UK Housing Secretary Michael Gove has warned Mercedes that the government may consider changing advertising laws to ban the display of the Kingspan logo on team cars.
In a letter to Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff, Gove said there are “very real questions” over whether the UK Parliament will accept that the team’s partnership with construction materials company Kingspan “reflects the public interest.”
Mercedes’ announcement of a partnership with building materials company Kingspan sparked outrage from Grenfell United, a group of victims and families of victims of the 2017 Grenfell Tower disaster, in which a fire broke out in a residential block that killed 72 people. ,
The group described the sponsorship deal as “truly shocking”, citing evidence uncovered during a public investigation into the tragedy, which revealed that Kingspan’s management misled officials about the fire safety performance of its insulation materials. Maybe, those were installed in Grenfell Tower. Gove also expressed his disagreement about the deal on social media.
Wolff publicly responded to an open letter from Grenfell United yesterday, apologizing for any “additional harm” caused to the families due to the team’s sponsorship deal with Kingspan, and with the group to discuss these concerns. proposed a meeting of his own.
In response, Grenfell United stated that “only meaningful action against those responsible can lead to a legacy of change for which our 72 relatives will be remembered, not the horrific way in which they died.”
After Wolff’s letter yesterday, Gove offered Mercedes a second response, noting that the British government and parliament would likely consider taking action to address the concerns of the Grenfell families.
“It is important to note that, as Secretary of State, planning controls for outdoor advertising space in England is a statutory responsibility that falls upon me,” Gove said in a letter to Wolfe.
“At present, in general terms, advertisements displayed in closed areas, such as sports stadiums, or in vehicles are kept outside the direct control of the competent authorities. My cabinet colleagues and I are subject to continuous and rigorous review of this system. to ensure that the advertising system remains fit for purpose and reflects the public interest.”
“I know there are very real questions about whether Parliament would support a legal system that would allow a key participant in a public inquiry into how 72 people publicly advertised their products to millions of families across the country. lost his life to do it.”
Gove asked Mercedes to reconsider the deal with Kingspan, believing it could tarnish the reputation of the team and its driver Lewis Hamilton in the eyes of the British public.
“The achievements of Mercedes and Sir Lewis Hamilton in recent years represent a British success story of which we are all proud,” Gove continued.
“I hope you will reconsider this business partnership, which threatens to undermine all the good that the company and the sport are doing,” he said.
The second phase of the public investigation into the 2017 fires will resume next Monday.