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Building Safety

Volume 710: debated on Monday 7 March 2022

The Government are ensuring that industry and those responsible pay to fix the current crisis. I refer the hon. Lady and the House to the letter I sent to the Home Builders Federation, published earlier today, which followed proposals sent to me by developers. While I welcome progress, developers have not yet gone far enough. I expect them to agree a fully funded plan to fix unsafe buildings by the end of this month or, reluctantly, we will have to impose a solution in law.

I have met dozens of freeholders and leaseholders in my constituency who are worried about the escalating costs of fire safety remediation. The Hyde Group recently billed tenants £9,000 a year for waking watch, although, thankfully, it rescinded it. Leaseholders from the Renaissance buildings may be liable for £500,000 of costs relating to external wall investigations and the building safety fund application. What reassurances can the Secretary of State give my constituents while they wait anxiously for the Government to decide who is liable for those huge bills?

I am grateful to the hon. Lady for articulating so clearly the concerns that so many of her constituents have. I am glad that the request for funding for waking watch has been removed. That follows on from the announcement that we made on building safety a little earlier this year. As she rightly points out, with regard to the allocation of costs and responsibilities, more needs to be done. I hope that by the end of this month the clarity that she seeks and the safe passage of the Building Safety Bill will provide the constituents for whom she speaks with the reassurance they deserve.