Plans have been submitted to urgently remove “dangerous and defective” cladding from a seven-storey block of flats for key workers in the town centre.

Combustible cladding will be removed from Mayer House’s façade and replaced with non-combustible material, along with works to ensure the Chatham Place building is watertight.

The works are being funded by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG), who say the works are to be undertaken as a matter of priority due to the fire risk.

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Housing association Catalyst Housing, which has submitted the application, said the works are subject to significant time pressures and asked Reading Borough Council (RBC) to approve the plans within its eight-week timetable.

Newsteer, planning consultants for the works, said: “The proposed development aims to increase the life of the existing building through the removal and replacement of the dangerous and defective cladding and façade currently in place.

“By retrofitting the existing building to replace the defective parts, the proposal accords with policy CC2 which seeks sustainable design and construction, preserving the buildings’ structure and removing only the necessary elements.

“The weatherproof materials proposed will further improve the longevity of the building while providing a consistent finish to the building which will be unaffected by weathering.”

Reading Chronicle: PICTURED: The cladding at Mayer HousePICTURED: The cladding at Mayer House

The new materials will be as close as possible in design to the current cladding.

The £14.5 million block of affordable flats for key workers was built in 2008.

It is the 17th tallest building in Reading according to high-rise data researchers Emporis.

The building is one of many in the town that need works to replace dangerous cladding, including buildings in the same area.

The council has approved plans to replace cladding at the following apartment blocks:

  • Q2, Watlington Street
  • The Honister and Hewitt buildings at Chatham Square, 20-40 Alfred Street
  • The Hunsaker, Hermitage, Halcyon, and Haywards buildings at Chatham Place, Alfred Street
  • The Meridian apartment block on Kenavon Drive

Works have also been submitted to replace cladding at Queens Wharf, on 47 Queen’s Road in Reading and at two hotels in the town centre.

READ MORE: Dangerous cladding to be removed from town centre hotels

There are also four buildings in Reading which were found to have Grenfell-type cladding.

The cladding has been replaced at three of these buildings:

  • Lawrence House (social housing)
  • Queen’s Court (student accommodation)
  • Crossway Point (social housing)

Works still need to be finished at Hanover House (private flats), with planning permission granted in October 2020.

Reading Chronicle: PICTURED: Hanover HousePICTURED: Hanover House

The works at Hanover House started at the end of 2020 and are currently expected to be completed by the end of 2021.