Cellar trap door building regs

Discussion in 'Building Regulations and Planning Permission' started by Morninglory, 27 Oct 2021.

  1. Morninglory

    Morninglory

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    Hi,

    Thinking about changing my ground floor layout and using a trap door to access the cellar and getting rid of the normal door. It's not a habitable cellar and just has gas and electric meters down there. Building control will need to approve the broader changes I have in mind, but would they want to see some sort of handrail around it when the trap door is open? The websites selling them don't show it, but maybe they just don't tell building control on those installations.

    Thanks
     
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  3. HERTS P&D

    HERTS P&D

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    What will you be keeping in the cellar?..................The rest of the Family?

    Andy
     
  4. ^woody^

    ^woody^

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    Cousin Billy-Joe
     
  5. ^woody^

    ^woody^

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    If it's not a permanent access, then it won't require guarding under b/regs, but may under common law in case you cause an accident to any users.

    However, if this is a house, then it's a three storey and additional fire safety works may be needed, and you'll need to ask your inspector how he's going to treat the cellar and it's access.
     
  6. Tigercubrider

    Tigercubrider

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    Will a meter reader be able/willing to go down there?
     
  7. HERTS P&D

    HERTS P&D

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    The question is, would he come up again!!!!!! OOOOOOOOOOOOOH!

    Well it is nearly Halloween!!!

    Andy
     
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  9. Morninglory

    Morninglory

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    This is really useful, thanks. Sounds like a big grey area. The trap door suppliers won't give any opinions on building regs considerations. Building control inspector seems to have a lot of discretion here. Is the definition of permanent access clear in the building regs somewhere?
     
  10. ^woody^

    ^woody^

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    I don't think it's in the Approved Documents, but may well be in the actual Building Act or Building Regulations or past case law/circulars.

    The building regulations are not prescriptive and do allow discretion as to how they are met. But what catches lots of people out is that the compliance with building regulations (which is a base minimum standard) does not automatically mean compliance with other relevant law or duties of care, and in common law people can be deemed negligent even when they have complied with building regulations.
     
  11. big-all

    big-all

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    i was thinking you would have to pay for the gas meter to be moved to an accessible position as tigercubrider says for the meter reader
    and far more important, easy access for isolation off gas supply in the event off escape ??
     
    Last edited: 28 Oct 2021
  12. cdbe

    cdbe

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    If cousin Billy Bob, or anyone else living in the property, is disabled and can't reasonably access the meter or ecv then the utility provider is obliged to relocate - but obviously not if the situation is caused by you.
     
  13. Terrywookfit

    Terrywookfit

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    Fit a AECV
     
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