Housing firm blocked from Help to Buy over Grenfell concerns

·2-min read
Grenfell Tower (Jonathan Brady/PA) (PA Wire)
Grenfell Tower (Jonathan Brady/PA) (PA Wire)

A company linked to the refurbishment of Grenfell Tower has been blocked from the Government’s Help to Buy scheme following concerns over business practices.

Rydon Homes Ltd will no longer have Government support and cannot market its properties to first-time buyers with the offer of Government-backed loans, pending the outcome of the Grenfell Tower Inquiry

Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities Michael Gove announced on Thursday it was in the “public interest” to exclude the firm following what he called “extremely concerning evidence” heard by the Grenfell Tower Inquiry.

Rydon Maintenance Ltd, which falls under the same parent company as Rydon Homes Ltd and has directors in common,  was the lead contractor for the refurbishment of the Grenfell Tower before the 2017 tragedy in which 72 people lost their lives.

It is in the public interest to exclude Rydon Homes from the Help to Buy scheme with immediate effect given the extremely concerning evidence heard by the Grenfell Tower Inquiry about its sister company

Minister Michael Gove

Mr Gove has warned of consequences for those responsible for the building safety crisis and those who are failing to help fix it.

He said: “It is in the public interest to exclude Rydon Homes from the Help to Buy scheme with immediate effect given the extremely concerning evidence heard by the Grenfell Tower Inquiry about its sister company.

“The development and construction industry should be in no doubt: I will continue to go after those who put lives at risk, are responsible for the building safety crisis and are failing to play their part in fixing it. The Grenfell community and innocent leaseholders deserve better.”

Mr Gove has written to the chair of the Housing, Communities and Local Government Select Committee and to Homes England, which oversees Help to Buy, to inform them of his decision.

Rydon Homes Ltd has been approached for comment.

The ban comes just a week after the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 team decided it would be “not appropriate” to continue a sponsorship deal with building materials company Kingspan over its links to Grenfell.

Mr Gove previously said he was “glad” the two mutually ended the partnership.

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