Posted on 04 February 2020
The hard work has paid off and the end is in sight for the recladding of our 433 homes at Gosport Towers.
Work on Garland Court and Harbour Tower was completed just before Christmas 2019 and the recladding of Hammond Court and Blake Court is on schedule to finish at the end of February this year. Scaffolding on the fifth block, Seaward Tower, is being taken down, with work due to be completed in mid-March.
Cladding on all five of our Gosport Towers is being replaced at a cost of £8M, paid entirely by Hyde, as part of our response to improving the safety of our homes following the Grenfell tragedy. Testing commissioned by our Building Safety Taskforce revealed cladding on the towers had to be replaced to ensure resident safety.
Our contractor partner, Axis Europe, has pulled out all the stops to engage with residents, particularly the most vulnerable, and making sure they are happy with work on their homes. Axis even paid for the re-application of the towers’ top coat, which cost £250k, to ensure the best possible finish. We expect Axis will finish on site at the end of April.
Hyde Director of Compliance, Liz Oliver, explained our emphasis on community engagement has been key to the project’s success. “This is not an easy job. For example, the towers all face the Solent coastline, which meant covering them with protective sheeting to protect both buildings and workers. We also knew it would be a lengthy project, so it was really important to be clear, honest and supportive in our communications with residents.
“Not only did this demonstrate our commitment to going ‘above and beyond’ to ensure resident safety, but also meant we could resolve problems quickly, minimising disruption.”
The project has been held up as a best practice example of recladding work, with visits by housing associations, local authorities and government officials. It was also one of the winners of Inside Housing’s Resident Safety Campaign in 2019 and is a finalist in the 2020 UK Housing Awards for ‘Campaign of the year’.
“The new cladding will ensure residents’ homes are safe and secure for many years,” Liz said. “The towers are now seen as a positive part of the area’s regeneration, even forming part of Gosport’s Heritage Walk.”