Resolution one

From the Barking Reach Residents Association committee to the emergency Residents Association meeting Thursday 13 June 2019, as amended and passed unanimously.

Displaced Samuel Gardside House residents

The Samuel Garside House fire was preventable!

This meeting notes with shock and sadness

  1. The fire in Samuel Garside House which destroyed 20 flats and damaged 10 more on Sunday 9 June 2019
  2. That due to the speed of the spread of the flames, if it had not been for the immediate urgent action of residents in the block and the surrounding area to sound the alarm to their neighbours, let alone if it had taken place at night, there would surely have been fatalities
  3. That this was entirely preventable.
  4. That the Barking Reach Residents Association contacted Barking Riverside Ltd and Bellway asking for a fire safety inspection just one month ago (May 6-8th) after a BBC shock revelation of Bellway building practices.
  5. That our chair phoned Bellway at that time due to the concerns about the amount of wood on the estate and discussed with John Enright, who assured him the estate was safe
  6. That residents have a legal right to full compensation for the value of their property and for the distress caused to them and their children.

We condemn

  1. Bellway’s use of untreated wood in the balconies which spread the fire through the block – just like the cladding that caused the Grenfell disaster exactly two years ago tomorrow.
  2. That Bellway refused our request to send an inspection team.
  3. That despite the abandonment of the “stay put” policy roughly 8 months previously, there was no audible fire alarm system in place and none sounded.
  4. That 12 months after the Grenfell fire, 120 families were still in temporary or emergency accommodation, and this must not happen here!

We believe

That Bellway and the others involved in the construction and management of the estate were negligent because they failed to address their minds to the obvious risk from the wooden constructed balconies and cladding despite previous concerns raised by residents.

We demand:

Relocation of the displaced residents in blocks C and D, and for those in A and B that want it also

  1. Satisfactory options offered to residents
  2. That a like-for-like exchange of flats across the estate is offered.
  3. That full compensation for the loss of value to homes, all personal losses and distress is facilitated and streamlined by all management bodies, including chasing insurance
  4. Transparency throughout from Bellway, Adriatic, RMG, Mace and BRL – openness and the involvement of the residents association
  5. The use of the Verde development where homes are not sold or occupied due for instance to setting aside for social housing.

Service charge and Rent

  1. Thatany Service charge or rent paid in advance by residents will be refunded, any due is now credited back
  2. That any direct or indirect costs associated with resolving the issues are not passed on to tenants and residents of Barking Riverside via service charge or rent.