Building Control

Welcome to Woking Building Control
A Member of the Surrey Building Control Partnership

What is Building Control?

The Building Control system exists to ensure that buildings are designed and constructed in accordance with the Building Regulations and associated legislation.

The Building Regulations are a national set of regulations made under the powers of the Building Act 1984. They provide guidance through Approved Documents, which provide a minimum standard of design and construction for new buildings, alterations and extensions.

These standards:

  • safeguard the health of people in and around buildings
  • conserve energy through insulation, and control usage and
  • promote access for all.

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How does the Building Control system work?

The first stage (known as the plan stage) involves the applicant submitting a Building Regulation application either in the form of a Building Notice or a Full Plans application. The applications will be examined by a building control surveyor to ensure that the submitted information fully comply with the requirements of the Building Regulations.

The second stage (inspection stage) starts when work commences on site. Following notification by the client or the builder, a series of site visits are made to check that the works on site are also carried out in compliance with the Building Regulations.

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Planning and Building Control: the relationship

Planning and Building Control are two entirely separate pieces of building law, and require separate applications.

The Planning Act deals with the correct use of land, the appearance of the proposed building and the effect that the development will have on the general environment and neighbouring properties.

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Building regulations

Building Regulations deal with the way that the building is constructed e.g. its structural stability, fire resistance, weather resistance, etc.

Works requiring Building Regulation approval:

  • erect or re-erect a building or part of a building
  • extending a building
  • carry out external or internal alterations to a building that affect structural, fire safety and disabled provisions
  • convert a roof space
  • recover roofs or re-clad buildings with different materials
  • carry out underpinning
  • change the use of a building or part of a building
  • replace windows and doors
  • insert cavity insulation
  • install unvented hot water systems and
  • provision, extensions or alteration of: washing and sanitary facilities and fittings; sanitary pipework; foul and rainwater drainage; sewage treatment plants and hearths; fuel storage installations; hot water storage and controls and;electrical installations to dwellings.

The above is for guidance and is not an exhaustive list. Guidance should also be sought from your local Building Control Service.