Mr Anderson’s evidence at the Grenfell Enquiry
On the 13th Oct, Mr. Mark Anderson the former Director of Property Services at the now defunct East Kent Housing, gave evidence to the Grenfell Inquiry.
He gave evidence for a little over five hours which can be seen here ⇒ on Youtube
Mr Anderson begun working full time for the Kensington & Chelsea Tenant Management Organisation (KCTMO), on 21st Mar, 2011. He left the KCTMO on the 8th Jan 2013. For that period he was the Executive Director of Assets and Regeneration.
His start date, March 2011, was just before preliminary work on the Grenfell refurbishment started.
In Jan 2012, it was he who made the recommendation to the KCTMO board to put the cladding on the building. The board approved his recommendation.
Earlier in phase two of the inquiry, the director of architecture firm Studio E, Bruce Souness, admitted that it would not have been appointed to the Grenfell project if it had gone out to open tender as it had no experience of refurbishing high rises or over-cladding residential buildings.
Studio-E (see page17) was effectively working for free and at risk towards the end of 2012 to early 2013 having billed all its invoices to the £174,000 ‘OJEU threshold’ by October. This was to prevent a tender being placed; and to allow the works on the refurbishment of the building to continue at pace, as a tender would have delayed the refurb by up to nine months.
However, this was not the most damning evidence to emerge, that came towards the end of the day.
Andrew Kinnier QC asked Mark about his recollection of a fire risk assessment which Mark says he saw fixed to a noticeboard when he was doing a walk around the Grenfell site, with consultants.
Mr Kinnier in the short video below examines this point adroitly.
The Fire Risk Assessment Mark says he saw between Mar 2012 and July 2012, was “valid” and had been carried out within one year prior to the day he noticed it. However, that turned out not to be the case as is made very clear in the video above.
Now fire risk assessments were an issue for Mark when he was at Circle Housing Group between Oct 2013 – Apr 2015 and also while he was at a East Kent Housing between July 2016 – June 2019. In both these jobs he was the man responsible for statutory compliance
Now there is evidence the Fire Risk Assessment for Grenfell Tower while he worked there Mar 2011 – Jan 2013 wasn’t “valid” either, plus he was the man who recommended the cladding be put onto the building.
You can draw your own conclusions as to Mr Anderson’s competences.
We note at the end of his evidence, he hoped his time at the inquiry had value for the 72 bereaved individuals and their families, many of whom he knew and met.
The Shepway Vox Team
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Clearly, he is a man with a lot to answer for.