The LWF Blog

Fire Statements – Part Four – The Application Process & Advice

September 6, 2021 10:45 am

On the 1st August 2021, an amendment to the Town and Country Planning (Development Management Procedure) (England) Order 2015 was made, now known as Planning Gateway One. The planning gateway requires a Fire Statement to be submitted with any planning application for a development including a relevant high-rise building for fire safety purposes.

Part four of LWF Fire Engineering’s blog series will focus on the application process, by considering how the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) works with the applicant and the local planning authority (LPA). We will also look at what circumstances require the LPA to refer applications to the HSE.

The HSE is the statutory consultee for any planning application that may involve a relevant building, which is a building of 18 metres or more in height or with 7 or more storeys and which contains two or more dwellings or educational (student) accommodation.

Prior to submitting an application under Planning Gateway One to the local planning authority, applicants are able to contact the HSE for advice on fire safety matters relevant to the application. This consultation is actively encouraged in the guidance notes for Planning Gateway One, as early communication between developers and statutory consultees can help to avoid delays after an application is submitted.

The HSE will not be able to offer the following:

  • A full assessment of the contents of the Fire Statement before submission;
  • Advice on any other aspect of the plan;
  • Information on compliance with the Building Regulations.

Support from the HSE is offered by email (PlanningGatewayOne@hse.gov.uk) with a lead time of up to 21 days. The same email should also be used by the local planning authorities to submit and discuss applications.

The HSE is launching a new Planning Advice Web App to deliver its land use planning service and allow developers and other relevant parties to make enquiries related to any plot of land. Planning Authorities are also able to use the app to gain advice from HSE.

A local planning authority must consult HSE before granting planning permission in the following circumstances:

  • Where a development will or may involve the provision of one or more relevant buildings;
  • Development of an existing relevant building, except where the proposed changes would result in the building no longer being relevant;
  • Development within the curtilage of a relevant building, unless material changes in land use or buildings within the curtilage would not result in the provision of any relevant buildings.

LWF’s blog series on Fire Statements includes information on the type of buildings affected by the changes, details on what information must be included and provides an overview of the application process and form. Part five of this series will begin to consider the application form itself and look at how it should be filled in. In the meantime, if you have any queries about your own project or wish to discuss this blog series, please contact LWF on freephone 0800 410 1130.

 

Lawrence Webster Forrest is a fire engineering consultancy based in Surrey with over 25 years’ experience, which provides a wide range of consultancy services to professionals involved in the design, development and construction and operation of buildings.

While care has been taken to ensure that information contained in LWF’s publications is true and correct at the time of publication, changes in circumstances after the time of publication may impact on the accuracy of this information.

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