After the Camberwell tower block fire there was much hand wringing over the absence of fire assessments and the buildings poor performance. Seems that it wasn’t just that block that was at risk and that the absence of fire assessments was widespread.
Now, the Tenant Services Authority who regulate Social Housing have announced
plans for a national register of social housing tower blocks in England . We must admit to surprise that none currently exists.
The proposed register of tower blocks would include all buildings of six storeys or more (excluding basements) that contain social tenants. [So that means if there is just one social tenant that the whole block will be registered]
The social housing regulator’s national register will hold details on ownership, the number of properties and the age of the tower block. It will also list the date of the last fire risk assessment and the date of the next assessment.
Phil Morgan, Executive Director Tenant Services said, “The health and safety of tenants is obviously of paramount importance to housing associations and their tenants. That is why the TSA is proposing to include health and safety in its new standards for social housing landlords, which come into force from April, and by developing a new national register of tower blocks.
“The register will be a valuable tool, allowing us to build up a comprehensive picture of tower blocks in England. It will allow us to work with landlords to ensure that they are fully complying with their responsibilities to carry out risk assessments and taking appropriate action so that tenants are properly protected from the risk of fire.”
The TSA wrote to all housing associations in July last year asking them to check the fire safety of their tower blocks following the fire at Lakanal House in Camberwell.
The TSA ‘s view, shared by CLG is that whatever the design of a building, the key issue is that landlords are fully meeting their responsibilities for carrying out risk assessments to ensure the safety of their tenants. The TSA will continue to work closely with CLG and other relevant organisations to ensure social landlords have appropriate guidance on these matters.
Generally we hold the view that over registration and registration of registration sake or registration as a means of backdoor data collection is a bad thing. In this case we think it is a GOOD thing!
Tenant Services Authority
Providing Practical Building and Service Charge Advice To Managing Agents, Landlords,
Freeholders, Tenants, Leaseholders and Right to Manage Companies in Kent & London
Regulated By RICS
call – 020 8295 1200