New Levelling Up Secretary says contracts to solve cladding crisis have been sent out

The new Levelling Up Secretary, Greg Clark, has said contracts to turn building safety pledges into legally binding targets have been sent out and are to be signed within the month.

As part of the Building Safety Act, which came into force last month under Michael Gove, leaseholders were asked to sign a pledge committing to fund essential repairs in buildings over 11 metres.

In an article he wrote for the i, Mr Clark said these pledges will now be made legally binding and the 48 developers who committed to this will have four weeks to sign the contracts.

concrete building

He wrote: ‘My predecessor, Michael Gove, was absolutely right in his drive to ensure that companies should fix the buildings they played a part in constructing.

‘But it is time these commitments are put into force.

‘I will today publish the contract that will turn that pledge into legally binding undertakings.’

The Building Safety Act has seen a majority of the UK’s housing developers pledge an estimated £2bn overall.

Those who don’t deliver on their pledge could be restricted from building new homes as part of the £3bn Building Safety levy improving building owners’ rights to launching legal action against developers.

Despite criticisms from leaseholders over possible delays, Mr Clark said the money raised could fix buildings which have been abandoned by developers.

Rogue developers who have refused to commit to fixing building safety issues will also be targeted under the Building Safety Act by the government’s new recovery unit.

Writing for the i, he said: ‘I have instructed my department’s new Recovery Strategy Unit to target any individuals or companies – not just developers, but freeholders, product manufacturers, and contractors, wherever they register themselves – that do not step up to do what is required of them.’

There were concerns by those trapped in homes with unsafe cladding that there would be delays to remediation work, as previous Housing Secretary Michael Gove was sacked last week.

He left without sending out the remediation contracts, but his replacement, Mr Clark, has expressed his wish to progress with the plans made.

Photo by Scott Webb


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