Four years on, the Grenfell Inquiry has finished hearing evidence and will now move on to complete its second and final report. The Inquiry was created to examine the circumstances leading up to and surrounding the fire at Grenfell Tower on the night of 14 June 2017. Through two phases of work, the Inquiry examined the origins and development of the fire, the response of fire and rescue services and other emergency services, as well as the circumstances and cause of the fire.
Sir Martin Moore-Bick is the Chair of the Inquiry. He sat through every day of evidence since the Inquiry started in May 2018. He published his phase one report in December 2019 which included 46 recommendations aimed at London Fire Brigade, fire and rescue services and government. Those recommendations along with Dame Judith Hackitt’s independent review of building fire safety led to new primary legislation with the Fire Safety Act 2021 and the Building Safety Act 2022.
View from Lead Counsel
Richard Millet QC is Lead Counsel to the Inquiry. He summarised his thoughts on a LinkedIn post on the last day of hearings. “In the four years in between, as Lead Counsel, I and my brilliant teams of leading and junior counsel and solicitors adduced a total of some 400 days of oral evidence from some 250 fact witnesses and 14 experts, based on a bundle of 300,000 or so documents.”
Shining a spotlight on the work of the Inquiry, Mr Millett added, “We exposed in stark forensic detail the anatomy of that terrible night and unpicked the myriad decisions and errors that led to the fire and its consequences, which have changed the shape of public discourse about risk and governance in modern Britain. It took a hedge fund litigator and a Commercial Court judge to break the mould of public inquiries and turn ours into a serious and disciplined forensic exercise.”