Grenfell residents’ lawyers block management move
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Moves to give Kensington and Chelsea council sole membership of the tenant management organisation overseeing Grenfell Tower have been stymied by residents’ lawyers, it was claimed yesterday.
The annual general meeting of the management organisation has been adjourned for 21 days to allow for further consultation with its members, according to lawyers representing victims of the blaze.
It emerged yesterday that in advance of the meeting, the management organisation’s board had proposed that it should terminate its agreement with the council. It was also proposed that on termination the council should become the sole member of the management organisation with the sole right to appoint its board.
According to lawyers, several existing members of the management organisation, including victims of the Grenfell disaster, were concerned that to do so would limit the management organisation’s accountability for the fire.
There were also concerns over giving the council control over the organisation’s participation in Sir Martin Moore-Bick’s public inquiry into the causes of the fire. Lawyers for the residents said that winding up the management organisation would inhibit any civil or criminal proceedings brought by former residents and victims’ families.
It also emerged that some some existing members had not received notice of the annual general meeting, possibly because their postal addresses had changed as a result of the fire.
The lawyers acting for the residents included Andrew Henshaw, QC, and Ben Woolgar of Brick Court Chambers. They were instructed by Shamik Dutta, a solicitor at the London law firm Bhatt Murphy, Paul Ridge, a partner at the fellow London practice Bindmans, and Lawrence Barker, also of Bindmans.