Combustible cladding found at King’s College, North Middlesex and Sheffield Children’s Hospitals

Cladding panels on three hospitals have failed fire safety tests, which were ordered by health secretary Jeremy Hunt in the wake of the Grenfell Tower tragedy.

Buildings at King’s College Hospital in south London, North Middlesex University Hospital and Sheffield Children’s Hospital were discovered to have combustible cladding.

Health service watchdog NHS Improvement said: “The three providers that have failed ACM tests are taking all necessary steps to ensure the safety of those buildings and occupants, in line with updated fire safety guidance that we’ve issued.”

At King’s College Hospital, cladding has been removed from an office building operated by the trust after it failed an ACM fire safety test, while Sheffield Children’s Hospital is taking down similar cladding from one of its buildings. Samples from a building used by North Middlesex University Hospitals NHS Trust have also failed a combustibility test.

NHS Improvement said it had identified 38 trusts that needed “to carry out urgent checks to ascertain if they had cladding similar to that used on the Grenfell Tower”.

Besides the three trusts found to have flammable panels, a further five are still awaiting combustibility test results from the Building Research Establishment.

Of the other 30 trusts, 19 have had fire safety inspections and are not required to take any further action, while 11 found that their cladding was not aluminium composite material (ACM), NHS Improvement said.

All of the 38 trusts have started 24-hour fire warden patrols, it added.