PEOPLE living in high-rise buildings in Glasgow may have to wait until next week before they find out if their home is wrapped in the same sort of combustible cladding as Grenfell Tower. The city council has been heavily criticised by ministers over its confusing and much delayed response to Scottish Government calls to check all buildings with cladding as part of nationwide survey following the fire that killed around 80 people in London.

News that dozens of privately-owned properties in the city may be clad in the same aluminium composite material (ACM) as the London high rise came out on Wednesday morning, when council officer Raymond Barlow revealed the situation to MSPs.

He told Holyrood’s Local Government and Communities Committee that combustible cladding had been found in private properties, but the local authority had not told residents, property owners or even Scottish Fire and Rescue Service.

The council later revealed that 57 buildings contained the material, but wouldn’t say which ones.

It is understood that the majority have a small amount while 12 have a significant amount of the cladding.

In a series of letters released by the Government yesterday, it was revealed the local authority had been badgered to carry out the checks, and provide the results.

Barlow and the authority’s planning department twice rejected government offers of help with what would have been a massive job.

Edinburgh, which was also offered help, accepted.

When Glasgow City Council did send information through, ministers said, it was incomplete and lacked detail. Yesterday, Housing Minister Kevin Stewart, wrote to the MSPs on the Local Government committee, confirming that council had now accepted Government help to “fully investigate and scrutinise the information they have shared so that they can reassure the owners and occupants of private high-rise domestic buildings that they are safe”.

Stewart said the information the council had given the ministerial working group on building and fire safety was “not sufficiently clear to be able to provide the necessary level of public reassurance”.

Stewart added: “This was esp- ecially important as depending on the type of ACM cladding, the extent of its use and how it has been installed as part of a cladding system there might be no cause for concern.”

Glasgow City Council leader Susan Aitken also wrote to Bob Doris, chairman of the committee, to say residents in affected buildings would be informed by the end of next week.

In a Holyrood first, using new powers for backbenchers following recommendations made by the Commission for Parliamentary Reform, Scottish Labour’s Pauline McNeill secured an urgent question at the Scottish Parliament. McNeill asked Communities Minister Angela Constance to guarantee the buildings affected were safe, adding: “If not, why not? And when will she meet the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service to ensure all the buildings are checked as soon as possible?”

Constance was unable to give that guarantee. She said: “We were not clear about the number of households involved and we did not have clear information about some of the buildings. It was not clear whether the material was aluminium composite material, where it was, whether it was used extensively, and whether plans had been retrieved to find it. All of that information is important to be able to reassure the public.”

Housing campaigner Sean Clerkin said residents were scared that cladding wasn’t safe. He said: “Wherever cladding has been put in samples have to be taken out and fire-tested.”