Bradley Stoke builder ordered to pay over £11,000 for breaching building regulations

05.02.2019
News
Justice gavel

The following serves as a warning to companies who fail to comply with the building regulations, and homeowners who can find themselves dealing with unscrupulous or unprofessional contractors...

In January, South Gloucestershire Council prosecuted a local builder to the tune of £11,689 when he was found guilty of non-compliance with the building regulations. 

Ben Walker of Monkeyfist Construction was found to have ignored the regulations and carried out unsatisfactory work at a home in Yate, South Gloucester and was found guilty of five charges resulting in a £2,000 fine for each plus an amount for the council's costs and a victim surcharge.

Problems came to light after the householder brought in a second, independent building firm following a lack of progress, despite money changing hands. South Gloucestershire's building control team subsequently found that no building control application had actually been made.

Cllr Paul Hughes, Cabinet Member responsible for Communities and Tourism, said: "This case demonstrates the importance of ensuring the correct route is followed when undertaking any building work.

"Construction is a complex arena where unscrupulous individuals can take advantage of customers’ unfamiliarity with legislation, and profit from cutting corners. If a contractor, homeowner or member of public are not sure of their responsibilities then they should contact our Building Control team and we will offer help and guidance to all of our residents."

Advice for property owners and builders

For those carrying out work - whether that's home and property owners or builders, visit 5 steps to building regulations approval for advice on making a building control application and to gain an insight into what the surveyor will be looking for on their site visits.

Property owners - before you start work, get help finding one of the many professional builders and avoid the cowboys by reading How to avoid cowboy builders.

 

Comments

Building regs

Submitted 3 days 4 hours ago

We have a lot of problems with architects not informing clients of the need for Building Regs. When we ask if the application has passed, the homeowners don’t seem to know what we’re talking about. This has resulted in delays whilst Regs approval is sought.
We’ve just had one where it’s taken the architect over a year to get the plans through approval, only to find that they didn’t draw up Building Regs, because, ‘the client didn’t mention it’ Like the client would know what to do.

Building Regulations

Submitted 2 days 21 hours ago

Sorry to hear about your negative experience regarding Building Regulations compliance. Not all architectural firms are like this though. We actively inform our clients of the need for Building Regulations and what they are. We also organise the Building Regulations approval so everything is in place before building works start, even if we aren't appointed to project manage on site with a contractor. This help guide on our website may be of use to people considering a future project and what needs to be done - https://www.ikonografik.co.uk/services-building-regulations

Building Regs

Submitted 2 days 15 hours ago

If architects are negligent, they should be reported to the ARB by the homeowner. As an architect myself however, I find that many builders use architects as a scapegoat for shortcomings in their own work. I find that many small builders cannot or will not follow drawings and specifications which have been approved by the planning authority and building control. Quite often they will persuade the homeowner to change things to make life easier or to offer savings. I do not want to tar all builders with the same brush. Most medium sized builders are well organized and understand that the plans are there to be followed. Its the smaller builders who usually take on the smaller domestic jobs who cause the problems.

Building Regs

Submitted 3 days 2 hours ago

We find that architects are mainly at fault for not informing clients of the need for building regs approval . We’ve just started, delayed, a project that the architect has been working on for over a year, with out informing the client of the need to draw up building regs. We now have instigated a check box system for homeowners to make sure all paperwork is in order. I don’t feel it’s really our job but architects are being negligent in their professionalism

Building Regs

Submitted 2 days 23 hours ago

If that is the case, then you should report them to the Architects Registration Board who have disciplinary procedures for such misconduct. You can also check with the ARB whether these people are legally entitled to call themselves architects. If not, then they are not they are open to prosecution.
http://www.arb.org.uk/
Are they bona fide architects, these people you refer to?

Unscrupulous builders

Submitted 3 days 2 hours ago

We have just tendered for a contract which is in excess of £80000 plus vat. We submitted our estimate only to be told by the prospective client that they had received another price very similar to ours with no vat to be added on. This figure is above the annual vat registration limit. How is this legal?

Reply to: Unscrupulous builders

Submitted 2 days 22 hours ago

Hi there, thanks for your comment.

Sorry but taxation is not a matter for building control. It is for HMRC to investigate.

John, LABC

Building Regulations

Submitted 2 days 21 hours ago

Sorry to hear about the negative experiences regarding Building Regulations compliance. Not all architectural firms are like this though. We actively inform our clients of the need for Building Regulations and what they are. We also organise the Building Regulations approval so everything is in place before building works start, even if we aren't appointed to project manage on site with a contractor. This help guide on our website may be of use to people considering a future project and what needs to be done - https://www.ikonografik.co.uk/services-building-regulations

CONTROLLED SERVICES

Submitted 2 days 20 hours ago

As CEO of NACE (National Association of |Chimney Engineers) and an LABC approved partner I fail to understand how CPS (competent person scheme) fitters or anyone with a mobil phone, van and a hammer can carryout complex notifiable building works to chimneys, flues and fireplace openings that clearly are structural alterations requiring building control approval without reference to structural calculations and therefore correct load bearing materials used. This dreadful contravention of the Building Regulations continues wholesale and appears to be sanctioned by CPS providers and by their members who have little if any building/construction/ structural or engineering experience let alone qualification to carryout complex and calculable work placing the consumer at considerable risk, our case work and ongoing investigation confirms little if anything is being done to support our concerns, even when reported.

Of course eventually a collapse will occur and only then will this matter be looked at in more depth, we have cases of defective installation and alteration work so bad they defy logic yet nothing is done to protect the consumer, ours is a lone voice in view of the level of profit derived from this type of unauthorised work.

Matters are made worse when building control personnel who we know have suggested that any such alliteration can be carried out under CPS registration, have backtracked immediately when it was pointed out to them this is not the case, this type of 'bodge' building work continues without accountability placing the consumer at risk and ultimately calling into question building insurance cover in view of a related claim and the validity of those who continue to risk both consumer safety and the fabric of buildings.

Private and commercial landlords, private and local authority housing associations all appear to follow suit, unaccountable work to and on listed buildings and building of historical interest continues by CPS registrants as well as others without a shred of knowledge, technical skill or administrate nuance again placing the consumer at huge risk from enforcement action let alone structural and/or fire and safety issues.

Architects continue to design chimney structures that simply cannot work because they simply do not have 'hands on' knowledge and lengthy experience of appliance to controlled services comparability placing new build owners at considerable risk when appliances are commissioned and then used adding in some instances to the problem with air pollution, this continues unabated.

What would you suggest we do to avoid a similar tragedy to Grenfell occurring in our industry with non-notifiable work continuing to put consumers at risk.

Barry Island Funfair

Submitted 2 days 1 hour ago

We prosecuted Barry Island Fun Fair last year for non-compliance with Part A. They built a 850m2 portal frame extension to an arcade. We tried to help them and advise on what was required to comply but they kept saying it was a 'fairground attraction' and had no intention of complying. There were no cross bracing of the portals, the steels were over-spanned and there was a bouncy castle under the pad foundation as the whole structure was built on filled ground. They were ordered to pay £35,000 and correct the work.
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-42634051

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