At MWA safety is, and always has been, our number one priority when we undertake a new project. Whether we are remodelling a client’s existing premises or setting the foundations and developing a new building we always emphasise the importance of safety in our designs and practices.
Although guided by our experience and in adherence with Health and Safety legislation, keeping abreast of changes is a crucial part of the business.
Recently the Government announced changes to Building Regulations, placing an outright ban on the use of ‘combustible cladding’ in the external walls of buildings.
Following a consultation period, the changes to the English Building Regulations, known as SI 2018/1230, update current legislation in light of the Grenfell Tower disaster and mean that planning permission will no longer be granted to buildings over 18 metres which use combustible materials in external cladding.
The changes became law as of the 21st December, meaning that new flats, residential care homes, student accommodation, hospitals and dormitories in boarding schools now have to seek alternatives in order to receive planning permission.
But there are exclusions! The new changes will not be relevant to offices and hotels which are over 18 metres as different evacuation strategies are in place and the associated risks are far lower.
Although the ban has not been applied retrospectively, the Government has handed Councils the power to rip down unsafe cladding and has set aside £400m to replace the material which has been identified on over 470 high rise social housing buildings up and down the country.
The building design and architectural industry is well adept at finding solutions to problems and sourcing alternative materials for their builds without compromising on safety, aesthetics or cost and this will be no different as we all strive to continuously and continually put safety first across all areas of our business.
To find out more information about current building regulations please visit: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2010/2214/contents/made or to speak with a member of the MWA team about the services we offer please call: 01924 464 342 or email us on firstname.lastname@example.org
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