No charges are likely to be brought in the criminal investigation into the Grenfell Tower fire for at least the next two years.
The Metropolitan Police said it would be “wrong” not to wait for the final report of the Grenfell Tower Inquiry, the second phase of which is unlikely to begin before the end of this year.
Seventy-two people died in the blaze in west London on June 14, 2017.
The officer heading the Met’s investigation into the fire Detective Superintendent Matt Bonner acknowledged that the wait may be longer than some people had expected, but said police must “ensure all the available evidence is considered”.
But survivor Natasha Elcock said it is “extremely frustrating and disheartening” to have to continue to live “in a limbo with no individuals or organisations being held accountable”.
Ms Elcock, chairwoman of campaign group Grenfell United, said: “We wait month after month, our lives on hold, for some kind of justice and progress.
“It is extremely frustrating and disheartening to now be told this will be our way of life for years to come.
“We know the truth about what happened to us. We know the refurbishment of Grenfell Tower turned our homes into a death trap and we know that people, organisations and institutions that were meant to care for us didn’t and 72 people died. And yet no-one has been held accountable.”
The mother of three, who used bathwater to put out flames as their 11th-floor flat started to catch fire, said bereaved families and survivors “urgently need reassurances from Government that justice and change will come”.
She added: “It is now 21 months since the fire, thousands of people are still living in homes with dangerous cladding, people in social housing are still being mistreated by landlords and Grenfell families still wait for any kind of justice.”
Mr Bonner said: “We have always said our investigation will be thorough, exploring all reasonable lines of enquiry and examining all the available evidence.
“While the Grenfell Tower Inquiry and the police investigation are independent of each other, our timelines are inextricably linked.
“For our investigation to be considered thorough and complete, it must consider all relevant information and it would be wrong not to take into account evidence given to the public inquiry and its final report and findings.
“We are in regular contact with the bereaved families and survivors as well as the wider community, and have informed them of our projected timeline for the investigation.
“I know this is longer than some might have anticipated, but the police must ensure all the available evidence is considered before any file is submitted to the CPS.”
Scotland Yard said in a statement: “The publication of any final inquiry report will follow phase 2 hearings and so the Met’s assessment is that any file submission to the CPS (Crown Prosecution Service) is unlikely to be sooner than the latter part of 2021.”
The inquiry’s second phase will examine the wider issues surrounding the fire, while the first phase was confined to the night itself.