Theresa May admits initial response to Grenfell Tower was 'not good enough'

Posted On: 
18th June 2017

Theresa May has admitted the initial support offered to families affected by the Grenfell Tower tragedy was “not good enough”. 

Grenfell Tower in Kensington on fire
PA Images

The Prime Minister has become the target of anger over her response to the disaster, which has left 58 people presumed dead.

She initially visited the Kensington tower block to meet emergency services involved in the rescue operation but did not speak to the residents in the area.

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After hosting some of the families of the victims and community leaders in No 10 yesterday, Mrs May acknowledged the response from authorities had been inadequate.

“The response of the emergency services, NHS and the community has been heroic,” she said in a statement.

“But, frankly, the support on the ground for families who needed help or basic information in the initial hours after this appalling disaster was not good enough.”

She said the Government would offer resources beyond the £5m already committed to helping those displaced by the fire if necessary, and announced a deadline of three weeks for families to be found another home “nearby” to the Kensington area of the fire.

The Prime Minister also set out to reassure victims about the upcoming judge-led public inquiry into the fire.

Mrs May said: “The inquiry will be open and transparent. Government and ministers will cooperate fully. I anticipate the name of the judge will be announced within the next few days and that an open meeting will be held with residents to help shape the terms of reference. 

“It has been decided today that the public inquiry will report back to me personally. As Prime Minister, I will be responsible for implementing its findings.”

The Government has also announced that a minute’s silence will be held for the victims at 11am tomorrow.