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January 10, 2018

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Fire safety

Safety upgrade work starts on Leeds student block

Work has started to remove external cladding from the Sky Plaza student block in Leeds, which was closed last year in the aftermath of the Grenfell Tower tragedy.

The building, which is run by Unite Students, was closed last summer as a precautionary measure, after it failed fire safety checks.

At the time, the West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service said five buildings in Leeds had failed cladding checks, including the Sky Plaza.


A spokesman for Unite Students said the building’s exterior cladding will be removed and replaced with cladding that has passed the latest UK building control tests.

Hob watchers will also be installed in the building to reduce the risk of hob fires and door “screechers” will also be installed to alert people if doors are left open in all kitchens.

The fire alarm system will also be completely upgraded.

And the building will also have a brand new sprinkler system and air circulation system installed.

The air conditioning and heating system will also be upgraded and new flooring and additional LED lighting fitted.

Student safety

A spokesman for Unite Students said: “Our highest priority is always the safety of our students, and this refurbishment continues to ensure Sky Plaza meets the most stringent health and safety measures whilst providing a comfortable and safe home for our students.

“The works are expected to be completed by the summer and will include the installation of a brand new sprinkler system amongst other health and safety features.

“We are currently taking bookings for September and look forward to welcoming students to Sky Plaza at the start of the 2018 academic year,” added the spokesman.

Earlier this week, it was announced the international auditing giant KPMG has quit the Grenfell Tower inquiry, after concerns were raised over possible conflicts of interest.

The announcement followed the publication of an open letter by campaigners and backbench MPs, which called upon the Government to cancel KPMG’s appointment to the inquiry.


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