• Gentoo has 26 high rise buildings located across Sunderland and its staff will be reassuring customers living in these buildings over the coming days

Updated Gentoo statement following tragic fire at Grenfell Tower

There is currently a huge amount of uncertainty and speculation with regard to the cause and spread of the fire at Grenfell Tower in London, which led to such devastating consequences.

At Gentoo, our main priority is to reassure our customers and their families, that the fire alarm equipment and procedures we have in place, are agreed and implemented with the full support of Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service (TWFRS) and are fit for purpose.

In addition to this, we have completed a face-to-face reassurance exercise with all of the residents living in our tower blocks across the city over the last two days.

I can confirm that none of the high rise blocks in Gentoo’s ownership have the same cladding and insulation as appears to have been used on Grenfell Tower.

In addition, I can also confirm that the contractors and sub-contractors referred to in the tragedy, have not been used in work on our high rise blocks.

Despite the comprehensive precautions we already have in place in our high rise buildings and with our residents, I have instructed our team to fully review our approach to fire risk management. Clearly, as verified details emerge from Grenfell Tower, we will of course further investigate and check to ensure that, if there are lessons to be learned, we will continue to work very closely with TWFRS to ensure that the safety of our customers remains our number one priority.

John Craggs                                                                                  

Chief Executive Officer, Gentoo Group