The day after residents received letters informing them that the gas was going to be switched off and that they would need to decant in the coming weeks and months, the estate was a hive of activity with media and press onsite doing live news reports, interviewing residents and seeking answers from Southwarks Press Office on behalf of the residents, as to why these potentially deadly issues were not picked up on sooner.
ARUP's recommendation to Southwark Council to remove the gas supply indicated that, just like Ronan Point, a small explosion could potentially blow out the load-bearing end flank walls, leading to progressive collapse. Many residents were horrified to discover that they had been living in such danger, for many years. From the cracks in the walls posing a fire risk, the situation had now developed to include an unsafe gas supply and the question over the structural stability of the towers, given that ARUP had not found evidence of structural strengthening ever having been done.
Harriet Harman tells the media that she will be writing to the Department for Communities and Local Government for funding to fix the issues at the Ledbury Estate. We told Harriet Harman that we believed that there should be an inquiry as to how this situation happened, and why residents lives have been put in danger this way.
Several days later, each resident received a copy of Harriet Harman's letter to Sajid Javid.