Changes to the Building Regulations are here!

As from the 1st October 2023 new legislation comes in to force affecting the Building Regulations process. The changes are to ensure that at each stage in building project duty holders are identified and roles, responsibilities and expectations are clear. This will ensure clients can consider and demonstrate how proposed work will meet the procedural and technical requirements of the Building Regulations. These changes are to align with the principles of the Building Safety Act 2022, which has brought the changes in to the Building Regulations.  

This introduces new duty holder roles for those designing and undertaking building projects of all types that fall under the requirements of the Building Regulations. There are 3 main duties:

  • Duty to ensure compliance with Building Regulation requirements etc -This duty applies to who initiates the building work and can include the building owner or a developer. It also includes the designer or Architect.
  • Duty to be competent -Duty holders should have the necessary skills, knowledge, experience, and behaviours for the design and work they undertake.
  • Duty to cooperate, coordinate and communicate between all involved parties -The new requirements place duties on the duty holders to work together in collaboration, maintaining effective clear lines of communication and share relevant information with all relevant parties in the process. This includes communication and information being passed to the regulator, which is either the Building Safety Regulator, the Building Control Authority (Local Authority), or a Building Control Approver.  

What has changed in respect of submitting a Building Regulations application?

You will notice when completing a Building Regulations application that the application forms are being updated to account for the new legislation.  These applications now include some additional information that will be required at submission stage:

Building Notice applications

  1. Where a Building Notice application is submitted for work to a building that does not fall under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 (RRO), does not affront a private street, and does not require consultation with the sewage undertaker
    • We will require a statement specifying the number of storeys including basements.
    • Where a Building Notice is given for the erection of a dwelling, or a building that is to contain one or more dwellings, we will require a connectivity plan to satisfy Parts R1 and R2 of the Building Regulations.

Full Plans application

  1. Where the applicant is not the client/owner (for example; where submitted by the agent/Architect), the name, address, telephone number and if available a contact email address for the client/owner.
  2. Where known at the date of the application, the name, address, telephone number, and if available a contact email address for the Principal Contractor (or sole contractor) and the Principal Designer (or sole or lead designer).
  3. Whether the building is a building to which the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 (RRO) applies or will apply after completion of the building work. (Note: The RRO applies to all building other than private dwellings).
  4. Where the work consists of work to an existing building, a description of the existing building including
    • Details of the current use and the proposed use of the building including the current use of each storey and details of the intended use of the building and each storey after the building work has taken place.
    • The height of the building before and after building work has taken place. The height is measured from the lowest external ground level to height of the highest floor level and aligns with the definition given in Approved Document B.
    • The number of storeys in the building both before and after building work has taken place. (As determined in accordance with regulation 6 of the Higher-Risk Buildings (Descriptions and Supplementary Provisions) Regulations 2023)
    • A statement setting out the date when it is proposed the work will reach the point when it is to be regarded as commenced in accordance with regulation 46A (lapse of building control approval: commencement of work).
    • Where the application is made by someone on behalf of the client, a statement signed by the client confirming they agree to the application being made and that the information contained in the application is correct.

What may be changing in determining Building Regulations compliance

It is reiterated through the changes in the Building Regulations, imposed by the Building Safety Act 2022, that the duty to show compliance with the Building Regulations is imposed on the Client, the Principal Designer, and the Principal Contractor. This applies whether a Full Plans or Building Notice application is submitted. It has always been the case, but this is now committed clearly in legislation that Building Control (the relevant authority) is to act as the Regulator and should not fall into the design processes of the proposed construction. The client and their design and construction team should make suitable arrangements, including the allocation of sufficient time and other resources, to show compliance with all relevant requirements of the Building Regulations. The client is also required to provide information to every designer and contractor involved on a project as soon as is practicable.

Useful links for further reading

The Building Regulations 2010 (

Building Safety Act 2022 (

Building Act 1984 (

Guidance on Collaborative Procurement for Design and Construction to Support Building Safety: An Overview