If you are in any doubt about whether or not you need either Building Regulation Approval, you should contact us before starting work, telephone: (023) 9244 6571 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you need to determine if you require Planning Permission, please contact the Planning Department, telephone (023) 9244 6015 or e-mail email@example.com.
Frequently asked questions
Building Control ensures that building works comply with the health, safety, energy conservation and access for the disabled requirements as laid down in the Building Regulations and Building Acts. Building Regulation Approval is the means by which the Building Control Service checks that building work is carried out to the correct standard.
In some instances you will find that you need both Building Regulation Approval and Planning Permission.
We process Building Regulation applications quickly, nearly all Full Plans applications are dealt with in less than 15 working days and Building Notices take only a few days. You can start work two days after submitting an application to the Local Authority.
There are two types of Building Regulation Approval:
This is the route that most people choose. It involves producing scaled drawings clearly denoting construction details and where necessary structural calculations. When these details are deposited the Building Control Surveyor responsible for that particular area will check them. Any queries are conveyed to you, or your agent, and when these are resolved an approval is issued. Site inspections are undertaken when work commences to ensure that the proposed work is constructed in accordance with the approved plans and complies with the Building Regulations.
Under this option no detailed plans are required. This is a simpler approach particularly suitable for smaller projects such as bathroom installations, minor structural alterations and domestic extensions. This option can be used for all work other than for buildings affected by a public sewer, or where mandatory means of escape regulations apply, or for which a Certificate under the Fire Precautions Act is required. This generally means that work relating to work places where persons are employed, for example, offices, shops, factories and public buildings cannot be carried out under a Building Notice. If the work involves an extension or a new building then a site plan and drainage plans are necessary. Under this option the Council can ask for further information on the construction at any time. No formal approval is given on a Building Notice procedure, nor do you receive the same protection afforded by detailed approved plans.
If you are in doubt, please discuss this with a member of the Building Control team by phoning: (023) 9244 6571 or e-mailing: firstname.lastname@example.org
Once a Building Regulation application has been submitted, you can normally start work 48 hours after notifying Building Control of your intended start date. However, if your application is a full plans type, then any works you carry out on site that are subsequently found to be incorrect upon a plan examination will have to be corrected.
Please note: If a planning application is also necessary, then work should not commence until this is obtained.
Options for notification to Building Control, are by a telephone call, letter or by e-mail. Telephone: (023) 9244 6571 e-mail: email@example.com
It is an offence to carry out works that are subject to Building Regulations without submitting an application. Should you be caught carrying out works you could be subject to legal prosecution and/or a continuing fine until the works are removed.
If you fail to remove the offending works, then the authority has the powers to remove and recover costs from the owner.
Building Regulation work is also subject to charges. Payments for the Full Plans option should be made in two stages: the first when an application is submitted and then after the first inspection of the works on site, when you will be invoiced.
In the case of a Building Notice a single charge is payable upon submission of the notice. This charge is equivalent to the combined Plan Charge and Inspection Charge which would be payable when making a Full Plans application.
The application is valid for 3 years from the date that the application was submitted.
If the council issues a Rejection Notice or imposes conditions on a Conditional Approval Notice, it will tell you why.
If you are unhappy or unclear about the reasons for the Rejection Notice or the conditions imposed, please contact the case officer who processed your application.
Where the council decides that your deposited plans do not comply with one of more requirements of the Building Regulations but you believe that they do, you will need to apply to the Secretary of State for a determination. Your application should be made in the form of a letter, with relevant enclosures as indicated below:
- The names and addresses of the parties involved, including any agents, the local authority, and the full address of where the proposed building work will be carried out.
- A statement setting out details of the building, the proposed work, and the matter in dispute.
- A statement setting out your case for compliance with the particular requirement of the Building Regulations in question.
- A copy of each of the plans of the proposed work and other documents which have been submitted to the local authority with your full plans application, and all of the relevant correspondence with the authority, including the 'notice of rejection of plans' if one has been issued.
- A copy of any listed building consent where the proposed work has required this. If relevant, a copy of any associated planning permission relating to the listed building should also be provided.
- A copy of any other documentation - whether commissioned by you or otherwise - supporting your case for compliance, including any calculations. Where appropriate, it may also be provided.
- A determination fee. A fee is payable for a determination and should be included with your application. It is calculated on the basis of half of the local authority's plan charge, excluding VAT, subject to a minimum limit of £50 and an upper limit of £500. Cheques should be made payable to "Communities and Local Government".
You should send your letter of determination and all of the relevant documentation to:
Department for Communities and Local Government
Building Regulations and Standards Division
Telephone: (020) 7944 5748/ 5742
Fax: (020) 7944 5739
Please note that you must apply for a determination before the work in dispute has commenced.
If the council refuses your application for a relaxation or dispensation of a particular requirement of the building regulations, then you have the right to appeal to the Secretary of State. Your application should be in the form of a letter, with the relevant enclosures as indicated below.
- The names and addresses of the parties involved, including any agents; the local authority and the full address of where the building work will be/has been carried out.
- A statement setting out details of the building, the building work, and the matter in dispute.
- A statement setting out your case for either relaxing or dispensing with the particular requirement of the Building Regulations in question.
- A copy of each of the plans of the building work and other documents which were submitted to the local authority with your relaxation or dispensation application and of all relevant correspondence with the authority involved, including the authority's 'notice of refusal'.
- A copy of any listed building consent where the building work has required this. If relevant, a copy of any associated planning permission relating to the listed building should also be provided.
- A copy of any other documentation - whether commissioned by you or otherwise - supporting your case for relaxation or dispensation, including any calculations. Where appropriate, it may also be helpful to include a location and block plan, and a few photographs of the building work to illustrate particular points.
No fee is payable for an appeal.
You should send your letter of appeal and all the relevant documentation to:
If you would like any further information on determinations or appeals please contact the Building Control service.