Progress to remove dangerous combustible cladding following the Grenfell Tower fire has been "unacceptably slow," the Housing Secretary has said as he announces a series of planned cladding reforms.

Robert Jenrick told MPs on Monday that from next month, owners of apartment blocks who refuse to remove dangerous cladding will be named and shamed, all part of a new strategy to speed up urgent safety measures.

Back in April, the News Shopper reported that more than two dozen buildings in Greenwich were still wrapped in dangerous cladding, two and a half years after the tower went up in flames, claiming 72 lives.

The borough is thought to have one of the highest numbers of dangerously lined buildings in the country.

Making a statement to the Commons on Monday, housing minister Jernrick said welcomed progress, but said it had been "unacceptably slow," stating that "inaction must have consequences" as current safety issues mean there is still "risk of further loss of life."

In what he called the biggest change in building safety for a generation, the minister announced he was setting up a new shadow regulator within the Health and Safety Executive with immediate effect.

The Government also set out advice for building owners, a proposal to extend the cladding ban and to lower the height threshold for sprinkler requirements from 18 metres to 11.

And from next month, the Government will start naming building owners where remediation had not started to remove unsafe cladding from their buildings.

News Shopper:

Mr Jenrick said: "Progress on improving building safety needs to move significantly faster to ensure people are safe in their homes and building owners are held to account.

"That’s why today I’m announcing a major package of reforms, including establishing the Building Safety Regulator within the Health and Safety Executive to oversee the new regime and publishing consolidated guidance for building owners.

"Unless swift progress is seen in the coming weeks, I will publicly name building owners where action to remediate unsafe ACM cladding has not started. There can be no more excuses for delay, I’m demanding immediate action."

He added: "I expect the shadow regulator to be established within weeks and we will be recruiting the first national chief inspector of buildings."

In April, councillors were told that hundreds of Greenwich residents in 28 buildings continue to live in private homes lined with the dangerous material blamed for the spread of the fatal blaze in North Kensington.

At the time, Greenwich Council's director for regeneration and growth said the authority was working with building owners to ensure they have appropriate mitigation measures in place.

One development in Greenwich, New Capital Quay, is thought to be the biggest development in the country with the material.

Other buildings affected include the Novotel Hotel, for which work started in February.

In March 2019, residents in a number of private ACM-clad tower blocks – including Northpoint in nearby Bromley – created the UK Cladding Action Group, to help raise awareness of the issue.

Following the announcement, the group tweeted out calling progress "simply unacceptable," stating the Mr Jenrick and his department needed to "take ownership of their own failures."

Shadow housing secretary John Healey said the proposals are "too little, at least two years too late".

He said: "Thousands of people continue to live in unsafe homes, condemned to do so by this Government's failure on all fronts after Grenfell."