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London: Grenfell Tower remains ‘to be pulled down’ four years on from fire

Grenfell Tower has stood as a daily reminder of the tragedy for four years (Picture: PA)

Experts have recommended that the charred remains of Grenfell Tower should be pulled down, four years after a devastating fire killed 72 of its residents.

The Government is set to make a decision imminently on whether to demolish the burnt-out tower block which has stood as a constant reminder of the tragedy in Kensington, west London.

Some of those who lost loved ones in the blaze have campaigned for the ruin to be preserved as a memorial.

But others say it poses a safety risk as it is riddled with asbestos and has been flooded in the basement.

The devastating fire spread rapidly through the building in June 2017 after starting in a faulty fridge-freezer.

Dozens became trapped on the upper floors unable to escape as flames ripped through inadequate cladding.

Ministers have not yet made a decision on Grenfell’s future but bereaved families have been told to expect an update later this month, The Times reported.

The paper has seen a report by consulting engineer Atkins which concluded that the tower ‘should be deconstructed at the earliest possible opportunity, with deconstruction commencing no later than May 2022.’

It is understood that a nearby secondary school, Kensington Aldridge Academy, is thought to be at risk from the tower’s continued presence nearby.

The site passed into the hands of the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) after it ceased to be a crime scene in 2018.

The department has assured the families that the tower will not be pulled down before the fifth anniversary next year.

An MHCLG spokesman said: ‘We know how important and sensitive this decision is and no decision has been taken. Following important independent safety advice from structural engineers, we are engaging closely with the community as we consider the evidence, including the safety concerns raised, and what the future of the Grenfell Tower should be.

‘We have now published this advice to ensure those most affected have access to the information that will inform a decision on the Tower, before one is reached.’

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