Not what anyone wanted: Observations on regulations, standards, quality and experience in the wake of Grenfell
Christopher Gorse and John Sturges: Construction Research and Innovation, Issue 3
While many factors will have contributed to the catastrophe at Grenfell Tower, it is clear that the structure itself behaved in a way that no one could possibly have intended. In this article the authors sample the bewildering and sometimes apparently contradictory directions provided by building regulations, and review how fire safety precautions, while seeming adequate on paper, can be undermined on contact with observed on-site practice.
The standards and regulations of the UK construction industry are highly regarded internationally but the Grenfell Tower fire has called into question the industry’s procedures, their enforcement and the quality of UK construction. The events of 14 June 2017 led to an unprecedented loss of life. Without second guessing the enquiry, there are some obvious problems: the external facing materials including the cladding combusted too easily, the fire spread rapidly both vertically, laterally and through the building, there was little resistance to the spread of fire and it was difficult to extinguish. Almost every aspect of the industry’s safeguarding regulations and procedures appear compromised or overlooked. With hundreds of buildings considered to be at risk and the many cladding systems now condemned, it is evident that the industry is either unaware of the regulations and standards that apply or is neglecting responsibility for fire safety. Questions must be answered and the tragedy of Grenfell must be acknowledged to restore confidence in industry standards and processes.
Close up of Grenfell Tower on 16 June 2017 (credit: ChiralJon/Wikimedia Commons).
The full paper can be viewed at the following link
The winners of Leeds Beckett University’s annual RISE Awards, that celebrate research, innovation, sustainability and enterprise have been announced by the School of Built Environment and Engineering.
The RISE awards (#RISE2017 for the social media savvy!), organised by the Leeds Sustainability Institute were established in 2015 as a means of bringing together both industry and academia to highlight new sustainable initiatives, schemes, technologies and products being developed or in use today. Presented by Gaynor Barnes from ITV Calendar and sponsored by CITU UK, a leading low carbon homes developer, eighteen awards were handed out in front of an audience of over one hundred and twenty individuals at the Marriott hotel in Leeds last Thursday night. Winners came from a vast array of environments, specialisms and backgrounds with accolades awarded for best research, sustainable developments, social value, enterprise, collaboration and education and training amongst others. All entrants, highly commended and winners displayed the passion and dedication to do things better and to elevate the spaces around us to being fit for twenty-first century living.
The awards were a fitting grand finale to Leeds Sustainability Institute International Sustainable Ecological Engineering Design (SEEDS) conference held on the Wednesday and Thursday of that week at the Rose Bowl in Leeds. Chaired by Professor Chris Gorse, this international conference, now in its third year, explores how buildings and spaces can be designed to reduce negative impacts on the environment, with keynote speakers, workshops and presentations focusing on how to readdress the balance between the built and the natural environment.
The event included a rousing keynote from Jonathan Wilson and Kevin Gillespie (pictured) from CITU UK.
“The RISE and SEEDS events bought together industry and academia to engage in research and celebrate achievements though industrial impact. Industry innovation showcased at the RISE awards was of the highest quality and the SEEDS presentations delivered by professors and scholars, from across the globe, were thought provoking, leading edge and held the potential to shape our world for the better. This two day event represents everything that is good about Yorkshire, the conference brought out the best in people, working together to achieve significant and positive impact. It is an absolute pleasure to be hosting such prestigious events.”
Colin Jones (pictured), who entertained our guests throughout the evening with his fantastic swing and jazz repertoire
If you are interested in being involved in RISE awards or SEEDS going forward please contact Liz Schofield on 0113 812 1902 or via email to firstname.lastname@example.org . We look forward to hearing from you!
All the social media tweets and images from the RISE awards can be found at the following link
All the images can be found at the link below along with a list of winners
We are pleased to announce that following on from 2016’s highly successful event, the RISE awards are back for another year highlighting and rewarding the most pioneering initiatives in Research, Innovation, Sustainability and Enterprise. Hosted by Leeds Sustainability Institute at Leeds Beckett University we are inviting applications now for new and innovative products, technologies, processes, projects and schemes. If it challenges the status quo, we want to hear about it!
Completely FREE to enter, submissions are encouraged across 14 different categories. With awards for industry leaders in energy efficiency, new technologies social value, research and more up for grabs we are sure there is a category for you! Previous winners have come from a vast array of environments, specialisms, companies and backgrounds – what matters to us is that entrants display the passion and dedication to do things better, pushing our industry forward and driving up standards.
The winners will be revealed on 14th September at our prestigious RISE business dinner at the Marriott Hotel in Leeds.
The evening itself will be the perfect opportunity for you to showcase your initiative amongst your peers, maximising your exposure and bringing your expertise to a new audience. Our vision is that as well as celebrating achievement, the RISE awards will be a breeding ground for future successful industry, academic and third sector collaborations. There will be plenty of opportunities for entrants to have ongoing engagement with Leeds Sustainability Institute and the wider University community both at and beyond the awards.
All ticket prices include a networking reception with welcome drink, a three course dinner, our awards presentation and entertainment.