Building Regulations exemptions

In general, the Building Regulations do not apply to the buildings described on this page, provided that they meet the conditions listed in each Class. Where this is the case, an application for Building Regulation approval is not required.

However, if work is carried out to a currently exempt building, which would mean that it no longer meets the conditions listed, then the Regulations will apply to that work.

For example, if it were proposed to extend a small-detached domestic garage such that its floor area would exceed 30m2 (see Class VI (1.)), the work would be subject to control under the Regulations. Additionally, if a building which currently meets the conditions for exemption, is altered, extended or has its use changed such that it would no longer meets the conditions for exemption, then the Regulations will also apply to that existing building to the extent set out in Regulation 6 of the Building Regulations 2000.

CLASS I
Buildings controlled under other legislation

1. Any building the construction of which is subject to the Explosives Acts 1875(c.17) and 1923(c.17).

2. Any building (other than a building containing a dwelling or a building used for office or canteen accommodation) erected on a site in respect of which a licence under the Nuclear Installations Act 1965(c.57, the only relevant instrument is SI 1974/2056) is for the time being in force.

3. Any building included in the schedule of monuments maintained under section 1 of the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979(c.46).

CLASS II
Buildings not frequented by people

A detached building -

(a) into which people do not normally go; or
(b) into which people go only intermittently and then only for the purpose of inspecting or maintaining fixed plant or machinery,

unless any point of such a building is less than one and a half times its height from

(i) any point of a building into which people can or do normally go; or
(ii) the nearest point of the boundary of the curtilage of that building, whichever is the nearer.

CLASS III
Greenhouses and agricultural buildings

1. Subject to paragraph 3, a greenhouse.

2. A building used, subject to paragraph 3, for agriculture, or a building principally for the keeping of animals, provided in each case that -

(a) no part of the building is used as a dwelling;
(b) no point of the building is less than one and a half times its height from any point of a building which contains sleeping accommodation; and
(c) the building is provided with a fire exit which is not more than 30 metres from any point in the building.

3. The descriptions of buildings in paragraphs 1 and 2 do not include a greenhouse or a building used for agriculture if the principal purpose for which they are used is retailing, packing or exhibiting.

4. In paragraph 2, 'agriculture' includes horticulture, fruit growing, the growing of plants for seed and fish farming.

CLASS IV
Temporary buildings

A building which is not intended to remain where it is erected for more than 28 days.

CLASS V
Ancillary buildings

1. A building on a site, being a building which is intended to be used only in connection with the disposal of buildings or building plots on that site.

2. A building on the site of construction or civil engineering works, which is intended to be used only during the course of those works and contains no sleeping accommodation.

3. A building, other than a building containing a dwelling or used as an office or showroom, erected for use on the site of and in connection with a mine or quarry.

CLASS VI
Small detached buildings

1. A detached single storey building, having a floor area which does not exceed 30m2, which contains no sleeping accommodation and is a building -

(a) no point of which is less than one metre from the boundary of its curtilage; or
(b) which is constructed substantially of non-combustible material.

2. A detached building designed and intended to shelter people from the effects of nuclear, chemical or conventional weapons, and not used for any other purpose, if -

(a) its floor area does not exceed 30m2; and
(b) the excavation for the building is no closer to any exposed part of another building or structure than a distance equal to the depth of the excavation plus one metre.

3. A detached building, having a floor area which does not exceed 15m2, which contains no sleeping accommodation.

CLASS VII
Extensions

The extension of a building by the addition at ground level of -

(a) a conservatory, porch, covered yard or covered way; or
(b) a carport open on at least two sides;

where the floor area of that extension does not exceed 30m2, provided that in the case of a conservatory or porch which is wholly or partly glazed, the glazing satisfies the requirements of Part N of Schedule 1.

An extension, which consists of a wholly or partly glazed conservatory or porch, must have glazing which complies with Part N of Schedule 1 - "Glazing- Safety in Relation to Impact, Opening and Cleaning".

The effect of this requirement is that it is not necessary to notify the local authority when constructing such a porch or conservatory provided that the glazing complies with Part N. If subsequently it is found that the glazing does not comply, then the local authority may be able to take action for a contravention under section 36 of the Building Act 1984.

The term 'conservatory' is not defined in the Regulations. However, for the purposes of Part L (Conservation of fuel and power), Approved Document L1 (Conservation of fuel and power in dwellings) says in paragraph 1.58 - "a conservatory has not less than three-quarters of the area of its roof and not less that one-half of the area of its external walls made of translucent material and is thermally separated from the dwelling by walls, windows and doors with the same U-value and draught stripping provisions as provided elsewhere in the dwelling". NB: Since changes in October 2010 for the conservatory to be exempt "the heating system of the dwelling is not extended into the conservatory"


Please note that the information on this page is not definitive and no responsibility for errors or omissions will be borne by Building Control at South Cambridgeshire District Council.

For more information visit:

Remember, it may be necessary in certain cases to obtain PLANNING PERMISSION under the Town and Country Planning Act and you are advised to make the appropriate enquiry to your own professional adviser or to contact the Council's Development Control section.

Contact Details

01480 388240

South Cambridgeshire District Council office

01223 457118

Cambridge City Council office