New cladding system proposed for blocks of flats in Poole

Posted on Friday 23 October 2020

A new cladding system for two blocks of flats, known as Sterte Court in Poole will be considered by councillors at Cabinet on 11 November 2020.

If approved by councillors, a £3.8M programme of work will start to remove the old cladding system from the outside of the two accommodation blocks and new cladding installed.

The buildings’ existing cladding system, which was replaced and completed in 2015, needs to be removed due to workmanship issues and because the materials no longer meet the current building regulations. A number of immediate safety measures were arranged following the conclusions of a recent Fire Risk Assessment to ensure residents’ safety and in line with the fire service recommendations and national standards.

Councillor Robert Lawton, Portfolio Holder for Housing, said: “The ongoing safety of all residents living at Sterte Court is paramount and together with Poole Housing Partnership, we are working closely with residents to ensure fire safety measures are in place to continue to keep people safe. It’s important that we now progress the work to replace the cladding to address the workmanship issues and ensure the new materials meet the current building regulations. Our proposal means this work would start as quickly as possible with the new cladding fitted soon afterwards, mitigating the need for the current additional fire safety measures in place at Sterte Court.”

The proposal outlines that the contract would be awarded to United Living who are currently carrying out works to blocks of flats in Poole town. Work to remove the cladding could start as soon as January 2021.

If agreed, the council would continue to progress an application to the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) for funding.

All costs for the works will be covered with no charges made to leaseholders at the properties.

There have been a number of fire safety measures put in place at Sterte Court to ensure the ongoing safety of residents and to meet the current requirements of the latest Fire Risk Assessment. These include:

  • Temporary change of fire evacuation procedure – to full evacuation if the alarm is raised
  • 24-hour waking watch
  • Sprinkler system currently being installed
  • Fire alarm systems fitted in communal areas and hallway of each flat

Once the cladding has been replaced the temporary fire evacuation procedure and 24-hr waking watch will no longer be required.

A report is being discussed by the Cabinet on 11 November 2020 before going on to Full Council.

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Notes to editor:

Sterte Court refers to two x 10-storey blocks of flats (114 flats) on the Sterte Esplanade that are owned by BCP Council and managed by Poole Housing Partnership on behalf of the council.