Building Standards have the role of:-
· Securing the health, safety, welfare and convenience of people in and around buildings.
· Further the conservation of fuel and power, and
· Further the achievement of sustainable development.
This is achieved through the application of the Building (Scotland) Act 2003 and associated legislation, in particular the Building (Scotland) Regulations 2004.
The main principals of the Building Standards system in Scotland are
we wish to support development that shows compliance with the Technical Standards, so it is very rare that a warrant is ever refused.
Unlike England & Wales, the Scottish system requires that a building warrant is obtained before work starts.
What is a warrant required for?
A building warrant is required for the erection, alteration, extension, demolition or conversion of a building.
Examples – General farm buildings over 280sqm in floor area
Dungsteads and farm effluent tanks
Any building open to the public i.e. a garden centre, farm shop or café.
Any fence over 2m in height
Any wall over 1.2m in height
A hardstanding over 200sqm in area
Alterations and extension to farm office
Converting a farm building to another use i.e. to create sleeping or communal facilities for farm workers. To create an office or canteen.
Conversion of farm buildings to dwellinghouses.
What work is exempt?
The Technical Standards do permit some building operations to be carried out without consent. Clearly all situations cannot be detailed in a limited article but the following give some of the main types related to farming.
Examples- Polytunnels and agricultural greenhouses – provided they are not used for sales (including storage) or open to public display
Farm buildings less than 280sqm in floor area as long as they are 6m from a boundary and do not contain an office/ canteen or visitors centre.
Fences not more than 2m in height
Walls not more than 1.2m in height
Hardstanding less than 50sqm in area, for a hardstanding over 50sqm but less than 200sqm a building warrant is not required but it must be designed to comply with building regulations.
When it comes to the farmhouse, what you can and can’t do is made clear in a leaflet you can downloaded from the general information pages on Perth & Kinross Council Building Standards web pages www.pkc.gov.uk/Buildingstandards or from the Scottish Government website.
Finally it is important to remember that Planning Consent and Building Warrant are two quite different forms of approval. In some cases you will require both but this is not always the case so it is always best to ask you local Council before you start.
One other function of building standards is to deal with reports of dangerous and defective buildings so I would make a plea to you to ensure you have a maintenance program in place to look after your buildings and keep them safe.
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