Building Safety eBulletin - 2 August 2021

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Building Safety eBulletin

HSE is the new statutory consultee for building safety

Planning gateway One (PGO) graphic

On 1 August 2021, HSE became a statutory consultee for planning applications that involve (or may involve) a relevant building


Planning gateway one (PGO) is the first stage of the new building safety regime.  It will help to make sure that fire safety issues relevant to land use planning are considered by applicants and decision makers. It’s part of wider changes to the building safety regime for England. 


PGO has two key elements: 

  • to require the developer to submit fire safety information specific to the development with a relevant application for planning permission for development which involves one or more relevant buildings, and
  • to establish the Health and Safety Executive as a statutory consultee for relevant planning applications

Peter Baker, Chief Inspector of Buildings said:


“The introduction of planning gateway one is an important milestone in the journey to radically reform building safety so that residents are safe, and feel safe, in their homes.  


“It will ensure that fire safety is considered from the very beginning of a building’s life and that developments benefit from integrated thinking on fire safety.


“The Health and Safety Executive is now a statutory consultee for planning applications involving relevant high-rise residential buildings and will apply risk-based fire safety knowledge and expertise to evaluate planning applications. This will enable local planning authorities to make sound and informed decisions.”


Find out more about HSE’s statutory consultee role.


For further information on the changes that planning gateway one introduces, visit this link.


If you require further advice on PGO with regards to your development, please email

An update from Dame Judith Hackitt

Dame Judith Hackitt

The month of July was certainly a busy one for Building Safety. Not only was the Bill introduced into the House of Commons at the beginning of the month but it also had its second reading on 21 July.


This means that the level of debate has of course increased, but what comes through very clearly is the strong support for the principles of the Bill and the establishment of both BSR and the Construction  Products Regulator and much improved Resident engagement at the heart of the system.


Where there is criticism, it centres on where the proposed legislation doesn’t go far enough – most notably in relation to addressing issues associated with existing buildings and the funding of any mitigation measures required.


This is where principles of proportion, reasonableness and practicality need to be at the forefront. Earlier this week, I had the pleasure of sharing a platform with Tim Galloway, Deputy Director of the BSR to talk to a network of Housing Associations about the forthcoming regime and how they could prepare. Both of us talked about being sensible and proportionate and the message was well received by the audience. It is heartening to talk to those who want to do the right thing and are looking for advice and guidance on how to get it right.


Momentum is going to be sustained over the next few months with Planning gateway one coming into operation and the publication of the first set of guiding principles on preparation of a safety case for high rise buildings.


These are hugely important steps which will start to make the new regime real – and in the case of Gateway One will draw that important line in the sand which says “no more shoddy buildings proposals from now on”.


This is good news for those who are already changing their practices and those who want to get it right – and it’s also a warning bell to those who continue to hide and try to avoid taking responsibility.

Report on ‘golden thread’ published

The introduction of a ‘golden thread’ was a recommendation by Dame Judith Hackitt in her report, Building a safer future, to support dutyholders in designing, constructing and managing their buildings as holistic systems, taking into account building safety at all stages in the lifecycle.


On 21 July, the Building Regulations Advisory Committee (BRAC) golden thread working group published a report setting out a definition for ‘golden thread’ and the principles which will inform ongoing work and guidance. It also demonstrates how industry can support the government in delivering safer buildings.


View BRAC’s ‘golden thread’ report.

The Building Safety Levy

The government has launched a consultation on a proposed new levy for developers of high-rise residential buildings.


The consultation seeks views on the design of the levy, and evidence of possible impacts on housing supply and regeneration, and the housebuilding industry.


Read more on the Building Safety Levy.

In case you missed it...

On Monday 5 July, the Building Safety Bill was formally introduced in the House of Commons with its second reading taking place on 21 July.


The introduction of the Bill is an important milestone for the proposed reforms to building safety law. It also paves the way for the official formation of the independent Building Safety Regulator.  


Read more about the Building Safety Bill.

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