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Building Control

Building Control

Important Notice: Dangerous Buildings

If you wish to report a building or structure that poses an immediate danger, please telephone
0161 342 2637 or 2638 during office hours or Telephone 0161 342 2222 or Minicom 0161 342 3009 out of office hours.

Notification of Amendments to Building Control Charging Scheme from 1 November 2012

In accordance with the Building (Local Authority Charges) Regulations 2010 take formal notification that Tameside Building Controls Charging Scheme came into force on the 1 November 2012.

Full details of the scheme can be viewed by appointment at the building control office.

Building Control is principally a service to ensure health and safety standards apply to building work, energy saving provisions are attained and premises are fully accessible for use, through the application of National Building Regulations.

An application has to be made to the Council for all building work, other than exempt works, refer to the 'Frequently Asked Questions' or complete our on line, "Do I need Building Regulations?" form to determine the exemption or required Building Control application.

Do you want to know if building works currently have building regulations consent? If so, you can now find out by using the Building Regulations Form.

Building work is:

  • The erection or extension of a building.
  • Material alteration of a building.
  • The provision or alteration of building gas installations, electrical installations, plumbing, cooling, ventilation, heating and hot water systems, including heating controls, known as controlled services or fittings.
  • Work to buildings where there is a change of use e.g. conversion forming a dwelling, flat, hotel, shop, public building, etc.
  • Work to buildings where there is a change in the numbers of dwellings or rooms used for residential purposes e.g. (rooms where people live and sleep).
  • The insertion of cavity wall insulation.
  • Underpinning of a building.
  • Replacement windows, doors and roof lights, where new frames and glazing are provided.
  • Alterations to a buildings thermal envelope e.g. roof / walls /ceilings/ ground floors etc.
  • Changing a building energy status e.g. heating a previously unheated part of a building / garage conversion etc.
  • Consequential improvements to a buildings thermal performance.

Building Regulations

These nationally applied standards cover the following areas and can apply to new buildings, extensions and existing building alterations.

  • Structure - controls building structural stability.
  • Fire Safety - provides for safe means of escape in case of a fire and other fire related issues i.e. fire spread control, fire resistance of construction and access for fire fighting.
  • Site Preparation and Resistance to Contaminants / Moisture - controls building on contaminated sites, methods of preventing dampness entering buildings and the prevention of condensation damage.

For further information on contaminated land related issues refer to our pollution control web pages.

  • Toxic Substances - restricts toxic substance use in buildings.
  • Resistance to the Passage of Sound - provides for minimum sound insulation provisions to both new and converted dwellings, residential premises and schools.
  • Means of Ventilation - requires adequate provisions to ventilate both domestic and commercial buildings.
  • Ventilation - requires adequate provisions to ventilate both domestic and commercial buildings.
  • Hygiene - requires minimum sanitary provisions to buildings.
  • Drainage and Waste Disposal - ensures both above and below ground level building drainage is effective and requires measures to be adopted to prevent water contamination.
  • Heat Producing Appliances - controls all forms of heating appliances i.e. gas fires / boilers / open coal fires etc (other than electric)
  • Stairways, Ramps and Guarding- provides for the safe design of stairs and ramps and precautions to prevent people falling out of buildings.
  • Conservation of Fuel and Power - requires minimum standards of thermal insulation, energy saving heating, cooling systems, ventilation systems and lighting controls.
  • Access to and use of Buildings - provides for reasonable provisions to be made for people to gain access to and use both domestic and non-domestic buildings.
  • Glazing Materials and Protection - provides for safety / safe breaking glass to prevent cutting injuries and provisions to prevent people walking into large glazed areas.
  • Electrical Safety - controls the design, installation and testing of electrical installations in dwellings.

How to Make an Application

There are two options through the Council when you choose to carry out work to which the Building Regulations apply;

Full Plans Option

(Download the Full Plans Application Form 80.76 KB PDF File)

This is the most widely known and used option, where scaled plans clearly indicating the proposed constructional details and where necessary supporting structural calculations, have to be submitted.

A Building Control Surveyor will check the plans for compliance with the Building Regulations. Any queries or problems will be conveyed to you or your agent (if applicable) at a time when they can easily be corrected and when these are resolved an approval notice is issued.

Full plans applications are subject to a maximum time period of 5 weeks, extendable on request to 2 months, by which a decision should be made.

A Full plans application approval is valid for 3 years from date of deposit.

Advantages of this system are that you receive a formal approval notice, which can be presented to financial institutions, solicitors, surveyors, etc when seeking loans or moving house. Also you have the assurance that provided the work is carried out in accordance with the approved plans the Building Regulations will be satisfied and this can save expensive mistakes.

After plan approval when the works start, Building Control Surveyors will carryout various Site Inspections to determine that the building works being undertaken complies with the Building Regulations.

Charges for the 'Full Plans' option are normally required in two stages.

A charge is payable when an application is submitted and a further charge is payable after the first inspection of the works on site (some minor works are paid fully on submission and are not subject to this second charge. See Building Control Charges).

To Submit the Application:

Complete the full plans application form and include at least two copies* of :

  • All detailed plans / specifications and calculations.
  • A 1:1250 scale location plan (block plan), showing the size and position of the proposal and its relationship to adjoining boundaries.
  • The appropriate charge payment (please have a look at the Building Control Charges page).

*An additional two copies of the plans are required for work to properties where persons are employed and / or are subject to a Fire Certificate under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 e.g. shops, factories, offices, public buildings etc.

Payment by Cheque

Please make your cheques payable to 'Tameside MBC' and if you are making a planning application at the same time, please ensure you include separate cheques for each application.

Building Notice Option

Under this option no detailed plans are required (see restrictions on it's use below) and once the notice has been submitted you have to wait 48 hours before starting the work. The total fee for the work has to be paid when the Building Notice is submitted.

This procedure is useful for carrying out smaller projects, such as bathroom installations, minor structural alterations and small domestic extensions, but this assumes that the person carrying out the work is fully conversant with the requirements of the Building Regulations which relate to the project and has the necessary construction skills to ensure the building is erected in accordance with these regulations. Should this not be the case then you are advised to have detailed construction plans prepared, showing full compliance with the regulations and make a Full Plans application.

As you are proceeding without approved plans, it is critical that your building work is undertaken with adequate supervision. Building Control Surveyors will attempt to establish compliance with the Building Regulations, but this service does not constitute total works supervision, as our visits are limited in scope and number. You are advised to seek the additional services of your own Architect, Surveyor of Clerk of works for a full works supervision service.

No formal approval is given for works covered by this Building Notice procedure, nor do you have the advantage of a Full plans application where plans will have been pre-checked before the work commences and gives yourself and your builder some comfort that the works you intend to carryout do indeed comply with the Building Regulations.

The whole process of making sure your work complies with the Building Regulations is carried out on site and should a problem be found by your Building Control Surveyor on his/her inspections, it will usually be after you have carried out a significant amount of work, which you may then have to undertake remedial works to bring into regulation compliance.

Also be aware under this option, we can ask for further information, which could comprise of architectural drawings or structural calculations are found to be necessary to enable building control to discharge it's functions. This information provision should not be confused with the full plans application process as no plans will be approved under the Building Notice process.

Please remember you are required to give 48 hours notice of your intention to commence work at least 24 hours notice before various stages of the proposals construction are reached (see site works notifications below) to give us opportunity to inspect the works as we feel is necessary.

Please note that under the Building Notice procedure the council are under no obligation to issue completion certificates in relation to Building Regulations and you will only receive a letter of the works completion.

If in doubt make a full plans application.

A Building Notice application is valid for 3 years from date of acknowledgement.

It cannot be used for premises where people are employed or where a Fire Certificate under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 is applicable e.g. shops, factories, offices, public buildings etc.

or

Where the proposals consisting of either underpinning, extensions or new build affects or is likely to affect access to or is built over a drain, sewer or disposal main indicated on the map of sewers kept by the sewerage undertakers.

or

Works involves the erection of any building fronting onto a private street.

In these two cases you must submit a full application under the Full Plans procedures above.

To Submit the Application:

Download the Building Notice application form, complete and return with the appropriate charge payment. This fee is equivalent to the combined "Plan Fee" and "Inspection Fee" which would be payable when making a "Full Plans" application. (please have a look at the Building Control Charges page).

Note: For New Build and Extensions - a 1:1250 scale location plan (block plan), showing the proposals size and position and its relationship to adjoining boundaries, together with a drainage plan indicating the proposals drainage discharges to the existing drainage systems, the position and depth of existing drainage runs must be provided.

Charges

Building Regulation work is subject to charges (please have a look at the Building Control Charges page).

Charges for the 'Full Plans' option are normally required in two stages.

A charge is payable when an application is submitted and a further charge is payable after the first inspection of the works on site (some minor works are paid fully on submission and are not subject to this second charge).

In the case of a 'Building Notice' option a single charge is payable upon submission of the notice. Note - because of the lack of detailed construction drawings for this type of application, the charges are slightly more than the combined "plan charge" and "inspection charge" that would be payable when making a "Full Plans" application to account for additional site inspection time that is involved.

Electronic Submission of Plans

You can choose to send your application and plans over the Internet through the www.submitaplan.com Link to External Website web site developed exclusively for Local Authority Building Control.

* Online payment engine currently being developed.

Online Payments

An invoice will be sent to the applicant or agent if applicable upon receipt of the application.

Should you require advice, help or assistance with the submit-a-plan process please contact:

Telephone Number 0161 342 2637 or Send Electronic Message Send us a Message.

Regularisation Certificates

It is quite common for alterations or extensions undertaken without building regulation approval to cause difficulties when you are selling a house.

This happens when the vendor cannot supply the purchaser with the appropriate approval notice and/or completion certificate. This calls into question the quality of building construction and the structural integrity of the work. However, you can now apply to Building Control for a Regularisation Certificate for work undertaken after 11th November 1985 which will assist this but you need to be aware that a fee is payable to the Council and breaches to the building regulations may need to be rectified. You can download the application form 35.22 KB PDF File and the Guidance Note on Regularisation Applications.40.81 KB PDF File

Replacement Windows

Are you thinking of replacing your windows? Read the new legislation.

Electrical Works

Are you thinking of having any electrical works carried out to your house / flat, in your garden or outbuildings or associated with any other building or alteration work? Read the new legislation and requirements in Part P Electrical Works Guide Note 20 281.31 KB PDF File

Self Certification Schemes

Similar to the schemes provided for replacement windows and electrical works, you can avoid having to submit a Building Regulation application for certain elements of work if you employ a 'Competent Person Scheme Member' to undertake such works.

Certain members of Government approved trade bodies are allowed to carryout works - they still have to notify the Local Authority, but this is done by their Trade association. The schemes coverage is explained in Guidance Note 26 - Competent Person schemes and exemption of minor works 71.2 KB PDF File.

Building Works

Do you want to make a complaint about building work or development in your area?

Click here to make a complaint and to find out what we do when we receive a complaint.

Starting Works

Choosing a Builder

See our useful advice on How to Choose a Builder 45.46 KB PDF File

Planning Permission - Important Note

Before works commence, you or your builder (where applicable) are advised to check the conditions that will have been set out on your planning approval (where one was necessary) - it is important to avoid future problems that all the conditions are complied with.

You will also normally have to agree samples of the external materials to be used with the planning officer before the work commences.

Should the site works deviate from the approved planning permission in any way due to site variations and problems, you must discuss these as soon as is possible with the local planning officer to avoid problems occurring.

If you have any doubts about planning related issues please contact the appropriate Planning Service.

Building Control

Irrespective of the type of Building Regulation application made, building work must be inspected during its progress and sufficient notice must be given to enable the Building Control Surveyor to arrange site visits.

Before works commence you or your builder are advised to check for any conditions that may have been set out on your Building Regulation approval - it is important to avoid future problems that all the conditions (where applicable) are complied with.

Site Inspections

Building Control can carry out site inspections to determine that building works being undertaken comply with the Building Regulations.

The number and nature of the site inspections vary according to the type of works being undertaken, the builders experience and past building control record.

You must give us a minimum of 48 hours before you commence the building work, this can be done by using the commencement notice provided with your approval or attached to the building notice form. You can download a copy of the Commencement Notice Form 19.38 KB PDF File or use the on-line Commencement Notice Form or you can obtain a copy from Building Control.

After we carry out our first inspection, you will be invoiced directly for a one-off inspection charge as laid out in the appropriate charge scales Building Control Charges (note - some works are not subject to this charge as it will have been paid on the applications submission).

Please be aware that if you have not obtained approval where the 'full plan' application option is followed, any works commenced will continue at your own risk until approval is granted and any works found to be wrong on the plan examination and carried out on site will have to be corrected by yourself or your contractor.

If you are undertaking works under a Building Notice application no formally approved plans exist and you must take further steps to ensure you or your contactor fully comply with the Building Regulations. If you have any doubt about your contractor's competency to work without full plans or the ability to manage the project without detailed plans and specifications, then you should consider engaging an architect or chartered building surveyor to supervise the works, in addition to the limited building regulation inspections the council undertakes.

You or your builder are then required to give us 24 hours notification of reaching certain stages in the projects construction, these are listed below for a typical domestic extension:

Please note that it is a statutory requirement that any work for which there is a statutory notification be left accessible to inspect for 24 hours from the midnight after the notice was given.

For domestic extensions the following statutory notifications have to be made to Building Control -

Inspection Comments
Commencement Gives you opportunity to discuss your proposals and next course of action with your Building Control Surveyor. If the project is relatively straight forward this can occur at the same time as the foundation inspection. For more complicated projects then a commencement inspection can be requested.
Foundations Allows ground conditions to be checked to ensure that the foundations are suitable to support the proposed works and must take place before pouring any foundation concrete.
Oversite Materials An inspection can be made before the area under the floor slab is covered over to inspect the damp proof membranes and floor insulation provisions.
Damp-Proof Courses and Membranes Wall damp-proof course's, floor damp proof membranes can be inspected prior to covering. Please check your approved drawing or consult with the Building Control Surveyor at the foundation inspection, as to whether a radon / methane barrier system is required, as it will affect your damp-coursing and slab construction.
Drainage Alignment and Fall Allows for the new drainage to be inspected for alignment and fall prior to covering over.
Pre-plasterboard A non-statutory notification which we can elect to undertake as it allows for the inspection of hidden structural members / roof timbers prior to plaster-boarding.
Prior to Occupation If you intend to occupy the building prior to fully completing the works, an inspection must be carried out before occupation. (Minimum 5 Days notice should be provided prior to occupation).
Completion * Notify us immediately the works are completed to allow this inspection to be carried out. (Minimum 5 Days notice should be provided prior to occupation).

* For projects involving electrical works see Part P Electrical Guide Note 20 281.31 KB PDF File for guidance on the testing required to be undertaken.

For commercial projects the we elect to carryout will vary depending upon the size and scale of the project being undertaken and these can be discussed at the commencement stage.

Please be advised that any inspections we carry out are limited in scope and purpose to check Building Regulations compliance which related predominantly to health and safety matters. This should not be confused with a full supervision service or a workmanship / quality check service, which would normally be carried out by your own Architect, Surveyor or Clerk or Works. You should seek advice from a suitable professional for this type of full supervision, workmanship and quality inspection service.

You can notify us of reaching the above stages by either using the downloadable Inspection Request Form 20.36 KB PDF File or the on-line Inspection Notice Form, alternatively you can Send a message to Building Control or telephone the Building Control office before 10.00am weekdays to arrange inspections. 24 hours prior notification is required as same day inspections cannot be guaranteed and please be advised due to the volume of calls received the phone lines can be very busy.

Unfortunately due to the nature of the inspection service and the need to be available to deal with dangerous building callouts timed inspections cannot be offered. Preferences for am/pm visits can be noted by the admin team but no guarantee can be offered that these will be possible to meet as the nature of the visit rota is area based.

Finally, you are requested upon completion to contact Building Control to arrange for a completion inspection (Where internal access will be necessary), please contact the Building Control during normal office hours on 0161 342 2637 or 0161 342 2638 or 0161 342 2376. You can use the completion notice sent to you or use the downloadable Completion Notice 15.38 KB PDF File or use the on-line Completion Form.

Please allow up to 7 days for this inspection to be made.

Peak Periods/Dangerous Buildings Incidents

At times of high workload each visit will be prioritised by risk assessment and you may be instructed to continue without an inspection. Regardless of whether it has been decided to inspect your work you are still required to notify Building Control at the above statutory notification stages.

During the working day the surveyors are responsible for attending to dangerous building incidents that come into the authority and the disruption to the inspection routine depending upon the severity of the incident cannot be planned.

Completion Certificates

Where you have used the ‘Full Plans’ application route, provided all plan approval conditions and all issues found on inspections are satisfactorily resolved, all statutory notifications have been made to building control and the required building services commissioning and test certification have been provided. Once the Building Control Surveyor has made a completion inspection and is satisfied that the work as inspected appears to comply with the Building Regulations, a "Completion Certificate" can be issued. This certificate is often now required for the sale of your property.

Again you are reminded that this certificate is considered as evidence (but not conclusive evidence) that, insofar as the authority has been able to ascertain, the works as described in the certificate are in compliance with the requirements of the Building Regulations. They are not a guarantee of a projects compliance with all building standards, nor of a projects workmanship quality.

For ‘Building Notice’ applications no completion certificates will be issued.

Late Completion requests - There is a legal requirement for the owner to give the local authority written notification a minimum of 5 days prior to occupation or completion of the works related to the Building Regulations application.

Where this has failed to be provided an the works are more than 3 years old from our last recorded visit our files are normally written off and no completion requests can be accepted due to the failure to comply with this legal notification request an the expiration of our statutory 2 year enforcement time period.

Provision of late completion inspection for jobs under 3 years from our last recorded inspection - due to the requirement to open up the archived files and verify its inspection history a request has to be put in writing to building control. If the case history is sufficient to allow for a completion inspection to be made and all necessary supporting test information is provided an additional charge as set out in our scale of charges will be required to be paid in advance of the completion inspection inspection. This process can take upto 28 days.

Completion certification can only be issued where the project is determined to comply with the Building Regulations requirements and should additional works to be found to be required on our completion visit all works will have to be corrected and re-inspected to verify compliance (additional charges may be incurred in accordance with our scale of charges hourly rates).

Note: Completion Certificates were and cannot be issued on projects completed prior to 1st January 2000.

If you have failed to comply with the completion/occupation legal notifications and no completion certificates exists and the property is to be sold you will have to discuss this matter with your legal representative.

Other Building Control Functions

Dangerous Buildings

Building Control has a statutory duty to deal with Dangerous Buildings and Structures throughout the borough.

Our objective is to safeguard public safety by dealing with any situation that may arise. We have the Statutory Authority to take legal action against the buildings or structures owner who does not take steps to remove any potential danger.

Our powers under dangerous building legislation do not however extend to dealing with dilapidated premises, which may be in a poor condition, but do not present a danger to the public.

Important Notice: Dangerous Buildings

If you wish to report a building or structure that poses an immediate danger, please telephone 0161 342 2637 or 2638 during office hours or Telephone 0161 342 2222 or Minicom: 0161 342 3009 out of office hours.

Information to be provided:

  • Address of Danger.
  • Precise description of what you consider to be dangerous and its location.
  • Any known ownership details/ access provisions that will assist Building Control in dealing with the complaint.
  • Your name and contact details so we can advise you of the action taken (optional).

Demolition

When intending to demolish a building, official notice must be given to Building Control, usually a minimum of six weeks prior to the intended start date. You can use the Intended Demolition online form or request the standard notification form. Alternatively download copy of the Intended Demolition Form 38.85 KB PDF File.

In order for us to process this application you must also provide a 1:1250 location plan clearly indicating the buildings to be demolished, all adjacent properties and existing drainage systems to be sealed, together with a copy of the demolition contractor's method statement indicating safe methods of demolition. We will also require evidence that a Refurbishment and Demolition Asbestos survey has been carried out and a copy should be sent to the contact address indicated below.

Within 6 weeks of receiving this completed application, we will issue a Demolition Notice setting out a number of conditions that have to be complied with during the demolition works necessary to maintain public safety and public amenity.

Building Control may also consult Environmental Health / Highways / Planning Departments and the GMC Fire Service prior to the issuing of a demolition notice.

You should also notify all service providers such as gas, electric etc by sending them a copy of the notification form and location plan, in order that they may arrange with yourselves for their services to be safely disconnected.

Planning Permission

The demolition works you are proposing may also require prior consent under planning legislation. You are advised to speak to development control early in your programming to determine the position with respect to this matter to avoid any delays.

Public Entertainments Licences

Building Control Surveyors provide technical support to the Council's Licensing Section, which is responsible for the issuing of Public Entertainments Licences.

How to Contact Us

Owing to the size of the area being covered and a more flexible approach to early morning and late afternoon visits being adopted, there will no longer be any set time that surveyors can be contacted in the office. The only way to speak to them direct will be to leave a message on 0161 342 2637/ 2638 for them to ring you back when they become available. Alternatively Send a message to Building Control.

Please also note due to the limited size of the building control team it is no longer possible to have surveyors dedicated to a specific area/project and you may see a number of different surveyors during the course of your project.

This will differ on major projects where named surveyors will be allocated.

If your enquiry is to seek advice regarding certain aspects of works requiring permission, the building control guidance notes page provides detailed advisory guidance leaflets to assist you.

There is no staffed reception service for Building Control and if you wish to meet a particular surveyor please contact the office to make a timed appointment when you can be seen.

Contact Information
Send us a Message Send us a Message
Contact by Post

Planning and Building Control
Tameside MBC
Council Offices
Wellington Road
Ashton under Lyne
OL6 6DL
Contact by Telephone
0161 342 2637 / 2638
Planning Permission:
0161 342 4460
Contact by Fax
0161 342 2563
Request this service online!

Page last updated: 23 October 2013