Documents suggest firefighters were shown the results of the £8.6 million project, suspected to be a factor in the inferno which claimed at least 80 lives.

London Fire Brigade (LFB) is under pressure to explain how much it knew about renovation works at Grenfell Tower just a year before the building was destroyed in a blaze.

It follows reports that LFB was consulted by Kensington and Chelsea Tenant Management Organisation (KCTMO) during and after the £8.6 million project last summer.

According to documents seen by the BBC , there was “close liaison” between the two which included firefighters being shown the “fire safety features of the building”.

However, a fire brigade spokesman denied that it gave any official approval of the work and explained that it did not have powers to inspect structural changes to buildings.

“We do not ‘sign off’ refurbishment and we only have legal powers to act where we see internal fire safety problems, such as compromised fire doors and combustible materials on staircases,” the spokesman said.

“ Firefighters regularly visit local buildings , to familiarise themselves with the layout and the firefighting equipment such as hydrants.

“This is not the same as making a detailed inspection of a building refurbishment, especially when many of the changes would sit outside of our powers.

“We are unable to confirm exactly what contact we had with the TMO regarding the tower because this is now subject to a public inquiry .”

The refurbishment of the tower is one area being considered by a public inquiry into the fire on June 14 , which left at least 80 dead .

During the renovation project, new cladding with a flammable core was wrapped around the tower, along with combustible insulation.

It is suspected the combination of these materials helped aided the spread of the inferno, which engulfed the building within minutes.

An independent review into building regulations and fire safety, led by Dame Judith Hackitt, was also announced last month.

The Department for Communities and Local Government said the fire “raised serious questions” about fire safety, centred on the use of flammable cladding in tower blocks .

The terms of reference for the public inquiry , which is being led by retired judge Sir Martin Moore-Bick , were announced on Tuesday (August 15).

It will examine the actions of authorities before the blaze, including Kensington and Chelsea Council , and how the aftermath was handled .

Sir Martin will also scrutinise the “adequacy” of building regulations, the recent refurbishment of the block and the causes of the fire.

The inquiry’s first hearing will be held on September 14, with an initial report to be delivered by Easter.

Source: getwestlondon

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