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'Poor workmanship': Highbury neighbours told 'not to smoke or use candles' due to serious fire safety hazards

PUBLISHED: 17:49 17 July 2019 | UPDATED: 17:49 17 July 2019

Fire breaches have been found in two Morea Mews homes, prompting a review of other properties. Picture: Joshua Hurston

Fire breaches have been found in two Morea Mews homes, prompting a review of other properties. Picture: Joshua Hurston

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Fire safety breaches have been identified at two private homes in Highbury where neighbours have allegedly been warned "not to smoke or use candles".

Fire breaches have been found in two Morea Mews homes, prompting a review of other properties. Picture: Joshua HurstonFire breaches have been found in two Morea Mews homes, prompting a review of other properties. Picture: Joshua Hurston

Cllr Caroline Russell (Green, Highbury East) has called on the council to stand in the way of developer Taylor Wimpey building any new properties in the borough until it has fixed flaws at properties at Morea Mews, in Aberdeen Lane.

This comes after a fire risk assessment found numerous hazards, including inadequate compartmentalisation - the concept where fire is contained in the flat where it starts - in two Morea Mews buildings.

Cllr Russell told the Gazette: "Basically they've identified two homes with about 60 faults each with fire stopping - really bad breaches like wires poking through without fire stopping around them, non fire proof furnishings on walls containing staircases and means of escape.

"We are not talking about minor stuff. It's so serious residents have been advised not to smoke or use candles in their homes. This is really worrying in terms of fire safety."

Fire breaches have been found in two Morea Mews homes, prompting a review of other properties. Picture: Joshua HurstonFire breaches have been found in two Morea Mews homes, prompting a review of other properties. Picture: Joshua Hurston

A Taylor Wimpey spokesperson said: "We have identified two homes at Morea Mews in which fire stopping measures have not been installed in line with our high standards.

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"The problems relate to poor workmanship by the main contractor appointed by Taylor Wimpey to construct the development.

"We are now working with all relevant parties including the contractor and the management company of the development to address the issues urgently and are in close contact with the residents involved.

Fire breaches have been found in two Morea Mews homes, prompting a review of other properties. Picture: Joshua HurstonFire breaches have been found in two Morea Mews homes, prompting a review of other properties. Picture: Joshua Hurston

"As a further precaution, we are assessing other properties at the development as a priority and remain in close communication with the management company and residents while this is taking place."

The contractor is Ardmore Construction Ltd and Morea Mews is managed by Aberdeen Lane Ltd.

An Ardmore spokesperson said: "Whilst we are unable to comment on an ongoing investigation, we wish to emphasise our enduring commitment to delivering projects of the highest quality, and we will continue to work very closely with our clients and residents in this regard."

An Islington Council spokesperson said: "We are aware and discussing information presented to us with the London Fire Brigade."

Fire breaches have been found in two Morea Mews homes, prompting a review of other properties. Picture: Joshua HurstonFire breaches have been found in two Morea Mews homes, prompting a review of other properties. Picture: Joshua Hurston

The failure of compartmentalisation contributed to the devastating fire which ripped through Grenfell tower in 2017, killing 72 people.

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