Housebuilder ‘offering our support to help remediate the damaged apartments’

Bellway has said it is co-operating with the investigation looking into the cause of the fire which ravaged more than 20 flats in east London over the weekend.

Firefighters tackle the blaze at De Pass Gardens,  Barking Riverside, on 9 June 2019

Source: London Fire Brigade

Firefighters tackle the blaze at De Pass Gardens, Barking Riverside, on 9 June 2019

The housebuilder said the fire at Samuel Garside House in Barking was “a very serious issue and we are working with all parties to establish how this happened”.

Bellway said it was working with Barking and Dagenham council to secure alternative temporary accommodation for affected residents and “offering our support to help remediate the damaged apartments”.

But it did not say how far this work had progressed or how many residents were being temporarily re-housed and for how long.

In a statement Bellway said: “We understand that the blaze was contained to the external envelope of the eastern elevation of the building, with initial reports suggesting that it was caused by a barbecue on a resident’s balcony.

“We are relieved that the fire protection measures within the building, which received all regulatory approvals, ensured that occupants were safely evacuated.

“Bellway continues to take the issue of fire safety extremely seriously and will work with all involved to ensure that affected residents are properly supported during this difficult time.”

Residents in the development have said they had previously warned Bellway about the fire risk to the flats, but had been assured by the housebuilder that the development was safe.

Meanwhile Bellway issued a trading update for the four months to 2 June, reporting what it called a “responsible approach to growth and high levels of customer satisfaction”, resulting in the company retaining its status as a five-star house builder as measured by the Home Builders’ Federation customer satisfaction survey.

The group said it had seen strong sales demand in the period, with a 4.7% increase in the reservation rate to 244 per week, plus a strong forward order book, with the number of plots rising by 2.7% to 6,312 homes.

The firm is due to unveil its annual results for the year to 31 July on 15 October.