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Building Safety Resident Engagement


We'd love your feedback on our draft Building Safety Resident Engagement Strategy. By participating, you could win one of three £50 vouchers for either Love2Shop or Amazon*.

 

In April 2023, the Building Safety Act 2022 became law. This was created following recommendations from Dame Judith Hackitt's 2018 review of fire safety and building regulations after the Grenfell fire.  

As part of this law, Karbon Homes must create, review, and share a Building Safety Resident Engagement Strategy with all high-rise building residents aged 16 and over.  

You can access the strategy by:  

  • Reading the strategy on this page
  • Downloading the one-page summary and full version 
  • Visiting the Byker main office
  • Visiting Mandarin Lodge office (St Oswalds)
  • Visiting your scheme office (Tom Collins House)
  • Asking your scheme co-ordinator for a printed copy
  • Viewing a copy of the strategy summary on your building noticeboard  
  • Emailing: buildingsafety@karbonhomes.co.uk 
  • Calling 0800 533 5442 (Byker customers) 
  • Calling 0808 164 0111 (Karbon customers)

The goal of this strategy is to involve residents in safety decisions about their buildings. We've been working with some residents through our Building Safety Panel, and now we want to hear from more of you.   

The consultation opened Monday, June 10, 2024, and will close on Friday, July 26, 2024. We want as much feedback as possible during this time. You can give feedback by completing this short online form

,Or requesting a paper copy from: 

  • Byker main office
  • Mandarin Lodge office (St Oswalds)
  • Your scheme office (Tom Collins House)
  • Your scheme co-ordinator
  • Emailing: buildingsafety@karbonhomes.co.uk 
  • Calling 0800 533 5442 (Byker customers) 
  • Calling 0808 164 0111 (Karbon customers)

*Terms and Conditions apply. 

Draft Building Safety Resident Engagement Strategy


The safety and wellbeing of our residents is our absolute priority.

After the devastating Grenfell Tower fire in June 2017, there has been a strong push for improved communication and engagement regarding safety with residents in buildings. The National Housing Federation highlights the importance of this:

“The Independent Review of Building Regulations and Fire Safety found that residents did not have a strong enough voice in the management of their buildings. The Building Safety Act requires that clear routes to resolve issues raised by residents about their safety are established, and residents have a chance to participate in decision making as well as have access to key building safety information.”

The Building Safety Act 2022 requires us to produce a Building Safety Resident Engagement Strategy for all residents and homeowners living in high-rise residential buildings (HRRBs). This is our first version of our strategy. We’ll update it as new regulations or guidance emerges.

Strategy requirements


This strategy aims to ensure all residents:

  • Are informed about the building safety information we will provide.
  • Understand what we may ask you about building safety and how you can contribute to it.
  • Know how we will contact you and use your feedback to influence decisions.
  • Understand how we will measure and review our engagement methods.
  • Feel safe in your home.

Who is this strategy for?

  • Everyone who lives in or owns a flat in a high-rise residential building.
  • Colleagues and contractors working with us that play an important part in doing the things we say we’ll do in this strategy.
  • Other stakeholders who have a role and interest in the building and keeping residents safe – for example the fire service, local authorities and the building safety regulator.

Which buildings are defined as higher rise residential buildings?

We own six buildings that meet the Building Safety Act definition of higher rise - residential buildings because of their height. These are:

  • Byker Wall (Dunn Terrace) - consisting of Tom Collins House, Wolseley House, Dunn Terrace, Graham House, Northumberland Terrace and Salisbury House
  • Byker Wall (Grace Lee) - consisting of Felton Walk, Felton House, Long Headlam, Headlam House, Shipley Rise and Rabygate
  • Byker Wall (Shipley Street) - consisting of Shipley Walk, Brinkburn House, Kendal House, Dalton Crescent and Gordon House
  • Harlequin Lodge, St Oswalds Court, Felling
  • Mandarin Lodge, St Oswalds Court, Felling
  • Merganser Lodge, St Oswalds Court, Felling

Equality, diversity, and inclusion


We’re working hard to collect the data to help us make sure that this strategy is meaningful and effective for all residents, whatever their needs, backgrounds, or characteristics (for example ethnicity, sex, age, disability, religion, or belief).

We’ll gather information about each building from various sources like surveys, in-person visits, lease agreements, and more. This helps us understand if there are any people or groups in these buildings who might be more vulnerable or may face difficulties if they don’t receive information or help in other ways. Once we know this, we’ll adjust our plans and actions to make sure we can help everyone according to their specific needs. Where individuals might need additional support to be safe, we will make referrals to our person-centred fire risk assessment (PCFRA) processes.

Efforts will also be made to gather information about all adults aged 16+ in each property. This is essential to fulfill legal obligations concerning the sharing of our strategy with everyone involved. All data collected will be processed and protected in accordance with data protection laws.

Where we know that an individual needs information in a different format, we will make sure that it is provided in a way that is understandable and accessible. We will review this information regularly through tenancy sign-ups, tenancy contact visits, surveys, and by acting on information we receive regularly.

Our approach


To ensure resident engagement and communications are well coordinated, we’ve outlined the groups below that will ensure this strategy:

  • Remains fit for purpose for all residents, staff, and all other stakeholders.
  • Encourages participation, empowerment and collaboration with residents and staff on all appropriate building safety matters, risk and decision making.
  • Complies with and is aligned to the relevant regulations.
  • Is regularly reviewed and improved where required.
  • Clearly defines what residents should expect, what this means, and how we will deliver it.

Karbon Residents Committee

Responsible for reviewing any feedback posed by Karbon residents and leaseholders, including feedback and actions from the Karbon Scrutiny Bank.

Building Safety Panel

The Panel is made up of customer representatives from Byker and Felling who work alongside colleagues from our Building Safety and Customer Engagement teams. They are responsible for acting as a sounding board and allowing two-way conversations between residents and Karbon. They discuss building safety related issues and help Karbon in meeting certain requirements set out in the Building Safety Act.

Karbon Group Customer Committee

The Committee has responsibility for overseeing customer experience and engagement and ensuring that customers have their voice heard. They are also integral in ensuring the needs and safety of customers are at the heart of the Board’s decision making; and that Karbon’s performance is monitored to strive for excellence across its services. They will be responsible for reviewing any recommendations in relation to building safety.

Byker Customer Committee

The Committee includes a minimum of four customers. They are responsible for overseeing the quality of services delivered by Karbon and ensuring the Community Pledge is delivered. Committee Members give their time, skills and expertise to help BCT achieve its strategic objectives.

Roles and responsibilities


We want residents to be safe. As the owner of the buildings and as the Principal Accountable Person (PAP), we have a responsibility to make sure that the building meets fire and structural safety requirements. Everyone has a role in keeping buildings safe, whether a resident or a leaseholder.

Every resident must:

  • Follow all the rules in their tenancy agreement or lease.
  • Avoid doing anything that might make the building unsafe.
  • Not damage or tamper with safety equipment like fire alarms.
  • Ensure that any waste is not left in communal areas at any time except for designated bin store areas only.
  • Ensure that any bulky waste is not left in the communal areas of buildings and suitable arrangements are made for prompt removal and disposal.
  • Provide access to your home for critical safety checks such as assessing fire doors.
  • Avoid allowing non-residents or unwanted visitors to enter into their building via tailgating or otherwise.
  • Provide household information that will enable us to identify where further support may be required and tell us if things change.
  • If Karbon asks for information to keep the building safe, it must be provided.
  • Promptly report any building safety concerns to Karbon.

Measuring and monitoring


We commit to share this strategy with residents and homeowners in our high-rise residential buildings that are aged 16+ and in a format that is accessible, clear, and understandable. Progress on the strategy will be reported annually to all residents.

We will measure:

  • Overall satisfaction that Karbon Homes keeps residents safe in their home.
  • Number of reports of building safety issues reported.
  • Number of complaints received about building safety.
  • Proportion of residents who state that if there was a fire in their building, they would know what to do. 
  • Proportion of residents who state that if they had any building safety concerns about their building, they would know who to contact.
  • Proportion of residents who state that they feel safe from fire in their home.
  • Proportion of residents who state that they feel happy that any building safety issues reported to Karbon will be resolved.

This strategy will be reviewed:

  • At least every two years.
  • After every consultation of this strategy.
  • After a mandatory occurrence report.
  • After the completion of significant material alterations to the building.

Complaints


We’re always listening and ready to work hard to resolve concerns straight away. If we are unable to resolve the problem there and then, we’ll undertake a full investigation to understand the facts. Complaints can be reported here.

Under the Building Safety Act 2022 a “relevant complaint” about building safety may relate to:

  • A building safety risk to a specific building.
  • The performance of an Accountable Person in fulfilling its duties under the Building Safety Act.

If a resident remains unhappy with the outcome of a complaint, it can be referred  to the Building Safety Regulator by either Karbon or the complainant. 

Related strategy documents


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Your feedback matters


We want your feedback on our draft Building Safety Resident Engagement Strategy. By participating, you could win one of three £50 vouchers for either Love2Shop or Amazon.

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