Wellend Villas is under 18m in height. When we refer to Wellend Villas here we are including all three blocks.
We know that the buildings were built at different times but we are dealing with all the blocks at the same time as part of our building safety programme. It is part of the second phase of the programme which is now underway. You can find out more about how our building safety programme works, general guidance for leaseholders who are looking to sell or remortgage and what to expect here.
What steps have we taken at Wellend Villas?
1. Completed preliminary investigations
Our experts have completed preliminary investigations into the building materials used at Wellend Villas and we have received the architect and engineer’s draft preliminary findings.
2. Review the preliminary findings
We have reviewed the initial findings. These have unfortunately revealed that we need to carry out some remedial work to the buildings to ensure that they comply with the Government’s guidelines. The exact extent of these has yet to be determined.
3. The need for more detailed investigations
The next step is to do more detailed investigations to establish how widespread the issues are, the scope of the work required, the likely timings and the estimated costs. Our initial estimate is that this will take about three months. We expect to be able to report further in May 2021.
This timing can change if we find that the detailed investigations are more complex for any number of reasons. We will keep you updated if this is likely to change. When the detailed investigations are with us we will prepare a summary of the extent of the remedial works required and a detailed programme of work for you to see.
4. The preliminary investigation showed that:
We need to install some horizontal and vertical firebreaks behind areas of the cedarwood timber wall covering.
We need to carry out remedial work to the cavity barriers around windows surrounded by the cedarwood because at least some of these have not been installed as recommended.
The cedarwood timber and insulation beneath will likely need to be replaced but we need to do some more surveys to understand the extent of that work.
In the meantime, what are you doing to ensure residents are safe?
While we carry out the more detailed investigations into the remedial work we have taken advice from the fire brigade and our fire safety engineers. This is to ensure that your homes have the right additional precautions in place to ensure your safety in the event of a need to evacuate the buildings.
This advice is that:
1. We should install additional smoke detection and alarms to supplement the existing system
Further to our update earlier in the month, we have now completed the installation of the communal fire panels across each of the three buildings, alongside installing the sensors and detectors required in most of the homes at Wellend Villas, although we still need to gain access to around 10 apartments.
2. Changing the fire evacuation policy to simultaneously evacuate While we complete the remedial works, we have changed the evacuation policy today from “stay put” to “evacuate” in the event of a fire. We have changed the signage in your building to reflect this.
More information on fire safety can be found here.
What happens next?
We are awaiting the results of a feasibility study. Once we have these, we will advise residents further as to the findings We will be investigating the remedial works required and producing a detailed programme of work for you to see.
We will be communicating regularly about progress - please make sure we have your most up to date email address so that we can send you updates.
We will keep this microsite updated with information as this becomes available.