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The Report: Kingspan and the Grenfell Tower Inquiry

Grenfell fire seen just before 5am on June 14, 2017, from Putney Hill in London. Photo by Cbakerbrian, CC-BY SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons. 

Between November 2020 and March 2021, eight Kingspan managers were called to testify and produce documents in the U.K. Government’s ongoing Grenfell Tower Inquiry. Seven others provided witness statements and additional documents. Our report, “Kingspan and the Grenfell Tower Inquiry: A Report for Architects, Specifiers, Project Managers and Fire Protection Engineers,” contains information from the thousands of pages of testimony, witness statements and related documents concerning Kingspan that became public. As documented in the report, the Inquiry has uncovered issues from 2006 to 2020 with Kingspan’s fire testing, certification and mis-marketing of its popular insulation product Kooltherm K15.

Adrian Pargeter, Director of Technical, Marketing, and Regulatory Affairs for
Kingspan Insulation UK, testifying at the Inquiry on December 8, 2020.

Inquiry: Does this exchange tell us that you were prepared to interpret ADB [Building Code] in a particular way in order to make sales?

Pargeter: Yes that would be true.

Inquiry: And that particular way was less safe, less conservative, and not ideal?

Pargeter: Potentially, yes.

Some of the issues covered in our report include:

The Inquiry revealed how, during this period of 14 years, numerous managers and executives were involved in discussions about these problems and decisions regarding the certification, testing and inappropriate marketing of the product, and several are still involved in the testing and certification of this product and others.

Kingspan ignored warnings from both inside and outside the company about these issues for many years.

November 2021: Kingspan’s demand that we cease distribution of the report

On November 1, Kingspan’s attorneys sent us a letter demanding that we discontinue circulation of our report based on what they called “inaccurate and libelous statements.” You can read our full rebuttal here.

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