Show Me the Bodies: How We Let Grenfell Happen

Date: April 20, 2024

This week, Sweet Projects welcomed author and journalist Peter Apps to present to our staff and Alliance partners about the story that he has been involved in for many years – the Grenfell Tower tragedy.

Peter Apps is a journalist and editor for Inside Housing ; a trade magazine that serves the social housing sector.

In his book ‘Show Me the Bodies: How We Let Grenfell Happen’, Peter explains how the biggest tower block fire in UK history was completely preventable.

Before the disaster unfolded in 2017, he was already investigating the dangerously combustible insulation and cladding used on British apartment blocks.

“On the morning of the 14th June 2017,” he writes in his book ‘Show Me the Bodies’, “when I woke up to the images of Grenfell Tower on fire, my first thought was ‘It’s happened’.”

He has since closely followed the lengthy public inquiry into the fire, sharing lessons learned, and followed the plight of those living in other buildings wrapped in materials similar to those that burned at Grenfell.

Peter kindly joined more than 50 of the Sweet Projects team and wider Alliance partners to discuss the book, and his experiences covering the tragedy and public inquiry.

“For me, it really hit home when I read ‘Show Me the Bodies’,” said Ian Dovey, HSQE Director. “For someone who has spent 40 years in construction, it was a really sad indictment of our industry.”

“Whilst we do not build residential properties, the wider learnings and key messages surrounding value engineering, quality, installing the correct materials, fire controls and the need for integrity from all involved in the design and build process was clear.”

“Many who work in construction will have read articles surrounding the Grenfell Tower fire and perhaps watched videos, or listened to parts of the Grenfell Inquiry.

“In my opinion, everyone working in construction or looking to join the industry should read the book. It is a powerful account of the 14th June 2017, the subsequent investigations and inquiry, and there is learning for all.”

A huge thank you to Peter Apps for sharing his knowledge and insight into Grenfell, and also to Alison Inman OBE for facilitating and Bobbie Hough for organising.