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Grenfell Tower fire: public inquiry to open
©Natalie Oxford/Wikimedia

Grenfell Tower fire: public inquiry to open

14/09/17Government

A public inquiry into the Grenfell Tower fire, which killed at least 80 people in June, opens later today (14 September).

The inquiry will examine the cause and spread of the fire, high-rise regulations, and the actions of the local authority.

Retired judge Sir Martin Moore-Bick, head of the investigation, will give a 45-minute statement that residents and victims will witness.

However, no evidence will be heard on the first day of the hearing and an interim report is anticipated to be released by Easter.

Kensington and Chelsea Council was criticised for its immediate response to the fire, leading to the resignation of former leader Nick Paget-Brown.

The full terms of reference for the public inquiry, which have been accepted by Prime Minister Theresa May, are: the cause and spread of the fire; design, construction and refurbishment of Grenfell Tower; and the scope and adequacy of the regulations relating to high-rise buildings.

Further areas which will be examined are: whether the relevant legislation and guidance were complied with for Grenfell Tower; the actions of the local authority and other bodies before the fire; and the response of the London Fire Brigade to the fire and the response of central and local government following the fire.

The inquiry is yet to decide which witnesses will be granted with “core participant status”, which provides them with the entitlement to see evidence and suggest lines of questioning.

Since Sir Martin’s appointment, there have been calls from some of the survivors for the head of the investigation, chosen by the prime minister, to stand down.

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