One of the rainscreen facade industry’s senior figures, Peter Johnson of Vivalda Group, has been recognised for his contribution to the sector, rebuilding trust and confidence in the wake of the Grenfell Tower tragedy.

Awarded by the professional leadership forum, West London Business, at an event in February 2023, the accolade was given to Vivalda’s longstanding chairman and founder based on his business’s first principle to supply exclusively safe cladding products to the UK construction industry.

The West London Business Award judges noted his personal commitment to effecting real change after the UK’s biggest housing disaster.  As well as donating non-flammable cladding to the rebuilt Grenfell Boxing Club, Vivalda has been an active force for good within the construction sector, encouraging open debate and contributing to the government’s cladding remediation group. Johnson was also instrumental in the production of an independent documentary, Behind the Façade, made by filmmaker Hamlett Films. The video was granted an industry award in 2022 for its contribution to education and training.

Accepting his award, Peter Johnson said: “My company had lost many specifications pre-Grenfell where our safe cladding was ‘design engineered’ out (due to cost cutting) and we didn’t want to get involved in a race to the bottom. That has now mercifully changed, but in accepting this award I would like to dedicate it in part to my superb staff, who always maintained their standards. A salesperson never likes to lose an order, which happened on many occasions, but when we did we lost it for all the right reasons”.

“Most of all, I’d like to dedicate this award to the people of Grenfell who lost their lives in the tragedy of June 2017, with a commitment from me that my company will go on working to ensure that such a tragedy never ever happens again.”

Presenting the lifetime achievement award to Peter Johnson, the judges of the West London Business Awards said: “Having founded and grown Vivalda locally with huge success, Peter has engaged in the industry debate and encouraged self-reflection on the Grenfell Tower disaster in a creative way. The constructive discussion he has fostered helps the whole community move forward and learn lessons from this terrible point in West London’s history.”

Vivalda Group is a nationwide company employing 165 people, distributing firesafe claddings from a dozen locations across the UK and Ireland. It also operates from two flagship bases in West London – Park Royal and Queens Park. 

Photo caption: Peter Johnson, chairman and founder of Vivalda Group.