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Building works exemptions

Some building works are exempt from the building regulations.

Please note: The Government may revise this list and the criteria for exemption.

Class 1: Buildings controlled under other legislation

These include:

  • any building subject to the Explosives Act 1875 and 1923
  • any building erected on a site licensed under the Nuclear Installations Act 1965, provided it does not contain a dwelling, or is used as either an office or canteen
  • any building classified as a monument under section 1 of the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979

Class 2: Buildings not frequented by people

Buildings into which people do not normally go, or go only intermittently to inspect fixed plant or machinery, provided the building is at least one and a half times its height from a building frequented by people or the nearest boundary.

Class 3: Agricultural buildings and greenhouses

Buildings used for agriculture, horticulture or fish farming, provided:

  • they are not used for retailing, packaging or exhibiting
  • they are at least one and a half times their height from any dwelling and
  • they have a fire exit not more than 30 metres from any point in the building

Class 4: Temporary buildings

Buildings which are to be in place for no more than 28 days.

Class 5: Ancillary buildings

These include:

  • a building used only in connection with the sale of buildings or building plots
  • a building on a construction, civil engineering, mining or quarrying site to be used during the course of those works and not containing sleeping accommodation

Class 6: Small detached buildings

These include:

  • detached single storey buildings with a floor area of not greater than 30m2, and which is either built of substantially non-combustible materials or not less than 1 metre from the nearest boundary
  • detached buildings designed and intended solely to protect against the effects of conventional, chemical or nuclear weapons. Excavations for such buildings are to be as far away from any part of a building or structure as the depth of the excavations plus 1 metre
  • detached buildings with a floor area of not greater than 15m2 and not containing sleeping accommodation

Class 7: Extensions

The extension of a building by the addition at ground floor only of a conservatory, porch, covered yard, covered way or a carport open on at least two sides of not greater than 30m2. Glazing in conservatories and porches must satisfy the requirements of Part N of the building regulations (safety in relation to impact, opening and cleaning of glazing).

Get in touch

If you are uncertain if the works you intend to carry out are exempt, please contact us by completing the following form or call us on the telephone numbers below:

Contact us

Page updated on: 25 June 2019

Building Control Service


Hackney Service Centre
1 Hillman Street
E8 1DY

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