Cover to cover: Balancing facade safety with aesthetics

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The public wants action on facade safety – and the industry must balance these concerns with the drive for sustainability

It is a year since the government banned the use of combustible cladding materials on new residential and other non-commercial buildings more than 18m high. The changes were a response to the catastrophic fire at Grenfell tower and the use of aluminium composite material (ACM) cladding on that building, which together with construction quality issues was deemed to have accelerated the blaze that killed 72 people. 

A consultation had shown wide support for the ban: some 62% of respondents agreed with banning combustible materials on external walls in buildings higher than 18m tall, while an even greater proportion (80%) said the ban should not be limited to high-rise structures but apply to all buildings.

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