Non-ACM Cladding at Winterthur Way

Current Status:

UPDATE 17/09/20

Ridge Consultants are visiting Winterthur Way for a site inspection on 18th September 2020, following this, tender documents will be finalised.

UPDATE 07/09/20

We are currently in discussions regarding the tendering process with Ridge Consultants and will provide a further update by 14th September 2020 on progress to date

14/08/20

  • The Fire Consultants have finalised the specification of works. This is currently being reviewed by the Building Surveyors who will shortly be issuing the tender documents. This is anticipated to be completed w/c 24/08/20.
  • Leaseholders have been issued with the s.20 “Notice of Intention” for the works. A reminder that comments or contractor nominations are due by the end of August.
  • We have now received 2 formal quotes and are awaiting the finalisation of a 3rd for the Fire Alarm system. We expect to report to the Board on this w/c 31/08/20.
  • We have now received the Reference Numbers for the registration of the Blocks for the Building Safety Fund these are as follows;
    • Block C (Cherry) 121-196 – “B6_NEW_Hampshire_10”.
    • Block D (Holly) 197-292 – “B6_NEW_Hampshire_9”.
    • Block E (Elm) 293-368. – “Basingstoke_1”.

The Issue: 14/07/20

Following Government advice investigations have been carried out to formally identify the cladding type on the top 2 floors of Cherry (C), Holly (D) and Elm (E) Blocks. We would point out at this time that the cladding is “Non-ACM”, meaning is not constructed of the highly flammable Aluminium Composite Material, such as that found at Grenfell. This cladding is HPL (High Pressure Laminate) type which the Government has advised is must be replaced if it is not the fire-retardant type. Formal investigations were undertaken to identify the cladding and material. This included onsite removal and assessment as well as contacting the manufacturers and installers. The result of the investigation is that the cladding is non fire-retardant type and as such will need to be removed and replaced.

What Action are we taking;

VHMC have appointed consultant building surveyors Ridge & Partners LLP and fire engineers VemCo Consulting to oversee the removal and replacement of the cladding. VemCo, as specialist Fire Engineers, will specify the works to be undertaken and produce a tender document. Ridge will then tender to procure a conactor for thr works for the works and oversee the removal and replacement project.

The fire engineers have also recommended undertaking interim mitigation works. This would mean the temporary installation of wireless firm alarm for the top two floors of each block and changing the fire procedures from “stay put” to “evacuate” for these floors only. VHMC are in the process of specifying and tendering for this work.

Whats this means for Residents;

The works will take place during the next 3-12 months. Initially, work will be required within the flats on the top two floors to install a temporary wireless fire alarm system and Chaneys will help coordinate this.

For the cladding works, the building will need to be scaffolded and the appointed contractor will have a site compound in the main Courtyard area. They will have access over the scaffold to the top two floors and balconies. The appointed contractor will have a resident liaison who will work alongside Chaneys to keep residents informed about the works and any disruption.

What this means for Leaseholders;

In June 2020 the Government launched its “Building Safety Fund” to cover the replacement of Non-ACM cladding. VHMC have registered the blocks for this fund in order that the burden of the cost of the works wont fall on leaseholders. This should mean that the cost of the removal and replacement of the cladding, along with the project management fees are paid for by the Government. We will keep you updated on the progress of the fund application.

Chaneys will shortly issue a s.20 Notice for the works, whilst it is anticipated that the Government will fund the works, the money has to be paid from the VHMC Account. Landlord & Tenant Act requires formal notices be issued and these will follow the finalisation of the specification.

The cost of the interim measures; the installation of a wireless fire alarm system, is not covered by the fund. We are in the process of getting quotes for this work and will report to you once completed.

If you have any questions about the project please email help@winterthurway.co.uk

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