High Rise Taskforce

Following the Grenfell Tower tragedy, Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham set up the Greater Manchester High Rise Task Force to provide fire safety reassurance, building by building, and get us to a point where we can assure all residents their homes are safe, as quickly as possible.

Led by Salford City Mayor Paul Dennett, the taskforce includes landlords of tower blocks across the city region in both private and public ownership, as well as representatives from every local authority in Greater Manchester and other specialist officers who can offer support to ensure every high rise is safe and receives the right fire safety advice.

The work of the taskforce will also inform a Greater Manchester response to the national public enquiry into the fire at Grenfell Tower. This will look at a wide range of issues but importantly will assess the level of resource that the Fire and Rescue Service has following the cuts of recent years.

What we are doing

Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service has carried out proactive inspections of all high rise residential premises to ensure all buildings comply with fire safety regulations and people feel safe in their homes. We are working with local authorities and housing providers, in the public and private sector, to reassure residents living in high rises across Greater Manchester.

As part of this work, GMFRS is also offering residents a Safe and Well visit in their home. During the visits, GMFRS staff will discuss health advice, crime prevention as well as fire safety advice. Call 0800 555 815 to book a visit.

If any resident is concerned about fire safety in their building or fire safety advice given they should contact us or their housing provider. 

Leaseholders can also get free, impartial, legal advice on residential leasehold law from LEASE, a government-funded independent body.

Government testing of cladding systems

Following the Grenfell Tower fire, the Government commissioned the British Research Establishment to carry out a series of large-scale fire safety tests on cladding systems as part of its Building Safety Programme. 

Specialist officers from GMFRS have carried out visits to identify any immediate issues which give cause for concern and have carried out a major joint inspection, alongside housing providers, in every building where the cladding has failed these tests. Working with the fire service, landlords of these buildings have put in place significant measures to minimise the risk to residents in the event of a fire, which includes evacuation plans and 24-hour security patrols in the buildings.

More information regarding the tests and advice from the Expert Panel can be found on the MHCLG website

The Greater Manchester High Rise Taskforce has also written to the Government urging ministers to commission large-scale tests of non-ACM cladding systems. This will provide further clarity for building owners and local authorities, and additional reassurance for residents. 

GMFRS will continue to work with housing providers and local authorities to reassure residents living in high-rises across Greater Manchester by ensuring every high-rise is safe and receives the right fire safety advice.

If you are concerned about a system installed on your premises you are advised to discuss with your housing provider who should be able to advise you on the type of cladding system used and the approvals process carried out by the relevant building control body.

If you have any concerns about the safety of your building you can get in touch with us by emailing highrise@manchesterfire.gov.uk or calling 0800 555815.

Further information

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High Rise Taskforce