In the early hours of 14 June 2017, a fire broke out in a west London tower block; 72 people died in the resulting conflagration, many of them, tragically, because they had followed the official safety instructions to remain in their homes.
At the time the Grenfell fire felt like a turning point in Britain’s attitude to social housing. Two years on, though, precious little seems to have changed.
Stuart Hodkinson, an associate professor at the University of Leeds, has spent a decade talking to estate residents about their experience of regeneration and maintenance of social housing estates at the hands of private firms. He tells me how a disaster like Grenfell could have come to happen – and whether something similar could happen again.
Also this week: Paul Swinney of the Centre for Cities tells me about Sheffield’s world-leading Advanced Manufacturing Park, which brings experts from different industries together with academics from the city’s universities to undertake joint research. The park is already a leader in its field – so can it help pull Sheffield out of its economic doldrums?
Skylines is produced by Nick Hilton.
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