Exeter Cathedral Yard Fire - Details of Requirements and Recommendations to Improve Fire Safety

The request was successful.

Dear Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service,

In respect of the Exeter Cathedral Yard Fire - Please would you provide the following information from the last 10 years:

1. Any requirements to improve fire safety served on the occupiers, owners or contractors relating to any premises that were involved in the fire.
2. Any recommendations to improve fire safety that were made to the occupiers, owners or contractors relating to any premises that were involved in the fire.
3. Any requirements or recommendations that were made to the local Building Control Officer to improve fire safety.

Yours faithfully,

Alan Cox

Freedom Of Information, Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Cox,

 

FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT 2000

 

Thank you for your request for information which was received on 5
December 2016.

 

I can confirm that we are dealing with your request under the Freedom of
Information Act 2000 and as required by the legislation, we aim to answer
your request within 20 working days from the date we received it.  If for
any reason we are unable to meet this deadline we will keep you fully
informed of the reasons for this.

 

Please advise in what format you would prefer our response?

 

If you have any queries about this please contact me via the details
provided.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Wendy Richmond
[1]Description: Information Officer
Description: Description:
DSFRS-FULL-COLOUR-BADGE_RGB t. 01392 87 2220  f. 01392 872300  w.
[2]www.dsfire.gov.uk  [3]@DSFireUpdates 
[4]Facebook   [5]Think Sprinkler
Devon & Somerset Fire & Rescue Service,
Headquarters, The Knowle, Clyst St George,
  Exeter. EX3 0NW

 

 

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Dear Freedom Of Information,

I will be happy to receive the information via email.

Yours sincerely,

Alan Cox

Dear Freedom Of Information,

I would like to receive a reply by electronic format.

Yours sincerely,

Alan Cox

Freedom Of Information, Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Cox,

 

Reference your request of 5 December 2016, please be advised that due to
the nature of your enquiry and the public interest we will be applying a
public interest test to your request. This unfortunately will take us over
the 20 working day deadline. However, under the Act there are provisions
to allow this. This is covered on page 14 of this guidance from the
Information Commissioner’s Office:

 

[1]https://ico.org.uk/media/1165/time-for-c...

A ‘reasonable’ time extension is considered to be an additional 20 working
days.

 

Unless you advise otherwise, we will assume you mean the properties: 18
Cathedral Yard, the Clarence, Costa Coffee and Laura Ashley.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Wendy Richmond
[2]Description: Information Officer
Description: Description:
DSFRS-FULL-COLOUR-BADGE_RGB t. 01392 87 2220  f. 01392 872300  w.
[3]www.dsfire.gov.uk  [4]@DSFireUpdates 
[5]Facebook   [6]Think Sprinkler
Devon & Somerset Fire & Rescue Service,
Headquarters, The Knowle, Clyst St George,
  Exeter. EX3 0NW

 

 

 

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Freedom Of Information, Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Cox,

 

In addition to the four properties listed below, we will also include the
Abode (café on ground floor of Clarence), and the Wellhouse Pub.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Wendy Richmond
[1]Description: Information Officer
Description: Description:
DSFRS-FULL-COLOUR-BADGE_RGB t. 01392 87 2220  f. 01392 872300  w.
[2]www.dsfire.gov.uk  [3]@DSFireUpdates 
[4]Facebook   [5]Think Sprinkler
Devon & Somerset Fire & Rescue Service,
Headquarters, The Knowle, Clyst St George,
  Exeter. EX3 0NW

 

 

show quoted sections

Freedom Of Information, Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Cox,

       

FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT 2000

 

I write in response to your request for information, which we last wrote
to you about on 15 December 2016.

 

Decision

The information you have requested is held by the Devon & Somerset Fire &
Rescue Service (DSFRS).

 

Please find below the detail of the information you have requested along
with our response, which we are releasing after considering the public
interest test.

 

Request

In respect of the Exeter Cathedral Yard Fire - Please would you provide
the following information from the last 10 years?

 

1. Any requirements to improve fire safety served on the occupiers, owners
or contractors relating to any premises that were involved in the fire.

2. Any recommendations to improve fire safety that were made to the
occupiers, owners or contractors relating to any premises that were
involved in the fire.

3. Any requirements or recommendations that were made to the local
Building Control Officer to improve fire safety.

 

Response
For the above request DSFRS have records pertaining to 4 premises which
were affected by the Exeter Cathedral Yard Fire.

 

These are;

1.    Castle Galleries - 18 Cathedral Yard, Exeter, EX1 1HB

2.    The Royal Clarence Hotel - Cathedral Yard, Exeter, EX1 1HB

3.    Laura Ashley -  41-42 High Street, Exeter, EX1 3DJ

4.    Costa Coffee - 43-45 High Street, Exeter, EX1 3DJ

 

Question 1

Any requirements to improve fire safety served on the occupiers, owners or
contractors relating to any premises that were involved in the fire.

 

Castle Galleries – 18 Cathedral Yard, Exeter, EX1 1HB – there are no
requirements recorded on file for this period.

 

The Royal Clarence Hotel - Cathedral Yard, Exeter, EX1 1HB.

 

For the period specified there are 16 records of communication between
DSFRS and the hotel management.

·         2 of these records relate to fire alarm actuations in 2008,
where advice was given on preventing false alarms.

·         One record from 2009 relates to a licensing matter which is
connected to the licensed activities carried out on the premises.

·         One record from August 2016 relates to a request from the new
General Manager of the hotel to liaise with fire safety staff for a
‘general chat’.

·         There is one record of a visit in July 2014 by a Business Safety
Officer to the premises following concerns raised by operational crews on
storage and means of escape. The matter was not deemed serious and was
dealt with by giving general advice on housekeeping.

The remaining records relate to fire safety audits and the follow up
activity these generated.

·         Fire safety audits were completed in 2008 and 2012, each of
these audits resulted in improvements to be made.

·         The 2012 audit resulted in an agreed action plan to be completed
by the hotel management;

·         points to be addressed in the action plan included

o   a ‘full review of the Fire Risk Assessment;

o   repair to or replacement of fire doors including intumescent strips
and smoke seals;

o   confirmation of fire resistant glazing on some (identified) escape
routes;

o   provision of fire marshal training to identified staff, including the
use of fire extinguishers;

o   adoption of a robust counting of persons on and off licensed premises;

o   and completion of repairs to provide suitable fire resistance in the
basement.

·         The Action Plan was deemed to be complied with by October 2013.

 

Laura Ashley -  41-42 High Street, Exeter, EX1 3DJ – the premises were
inspected in 2012 and matters related to means of escape from the premises
and storage were identified which required remedies. No formal action was
taken.

 

Costa Coffee – 43-45 High Street, Exeter, EX1 3DJ – none.

 

Question 2

Any recommendations to improve fire safety that were made to the
occupiers, owners or contractors relating to any premises that were
involved in the fire.

 

Castle Galleries – 18 Cathedral Yard, Exeter, EX1 1HB - 3DJ – none other
than general advice following a satisfactory inspection by operational
crews in 2103.

 

The Royal Clarence Hotel - Cathedral Yard, Exeter, EX1 1HB

 

This has been covered in the answer given to question 1.

 

Laura Ashley - 41-42 High Street, Exeter, EX1 3DJ

Following the inspection of 2011, recommendations to improve the fire
safety management at the premises were outlined in a letter. 

 

Costa Coffee – 43-45 High Street, Exeter, EX1 3DJ – none other than
general advice following a satisfactory inspection by operational crews in
2102.

 

Question 3

Any requirements or recommendations that were made to the local Building
Control Officer to improve fire safety.

 

Castle Galleries - 18 Cathedral Yard, Exeter, EX1 1HB

There have been several building regulation consultations which relate to
other parts of the premises, which were being converted at the time of the
fire. There are no final (or completion) certificates for these
consultations.

May 2016 - Conversion to 5 flats. The application included sprinklers.

Feb 2011 - Installation of dry riser in connection of previous Building
Regulations application (conversion into 5 flats).

Letter 17 Dec 2009 - Building regulations application – Conversion into 5
flats.

Letter 10 Dec 2009 - Building Regulations application ‘Installation of new
shop frontage, formation of rear stockroom, installation of EL, AFD,
Signage and lining internal walls with material noted in specification.
DSFRS commented that the proposals appeared to satisfy the requirements of
the Building Regulations for fire safety.

 

The Royal Clarence Hotel - Cathedral Yard, Exeter, EX1 1HB.

 

There have been no Building Regulations consultations for the period
specified.

 

Laura Ashley - 41-42 High Street, Exeter, EX1 3DJ.

 

There have been no building regulation consultations for this period
requested.

 

Costa Coffee – 43-45 High Street, Exeter, EX1 3DJ.

 

A building regulation consultation was completed in 2007. DSFRS commented
on the occupancy arrangements for the first floor and exit width,
requiring compliance with the Approved Document B. A final certificate
confirming compliance was submitted in 2008.

 

A second building regulation consultation was completed in 2011. DSFRS
commented that the proposals appeared to satisfy the requirements of the
Building Regulation for fire safety.

 

Review

You have the right to ask us to review this decision.  If you wish to do
this please set out your grounds for review in writing and send them to
the Information Officer at the Service Headquarters address or e-mail
[1][Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service request email].

 

Appeals

If you are still dissatisfied after a Service review you have the right to
appeal to the Information Commissioner at the Information Commissioner’s
Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Wendy Richmond
[2]Description: Information Officer
Description: Description:
DSFRS-FULL-COLOUR-BADGE_RGB t. 01392 87 2220  f. 01392 872300  w.
[3]www.dsfire.gov.uk  [4]@DSFireUpdates 
[5]Facebook   [6]Think Sprinkler
Devon & Somerset Fire & Rescue Service,
Headquarters, The Knowle, Clyst St George,
  Exeter. EX3 0NW

 

 

 

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