Success for schemes in B&NES in the LABC West of England Building Excellence Awards 2017

Building projects in the B&NES area were successful in the LABC West of England Building Excellence Awards 2017 which were held in Bristol recently.

There were two winning schemes and one highly commended:-

Highly Commended - Best Extension or Alteration to an Existing Home: Hill Rise, North Road, Bath - Project Team: South West Contractors, SR Architects Ltd

Winner - Best Educational Building: University of Bath, Claverton Down, Bath - Project team: Vinci Construction UK, AWW Architects, University of Bath

Winner - Best Small Commercial Project: Bath Mill Lodge Retreat, Bath - Project Team: Inside Out Architectural Consultants Ltd, Tracy Park Golf & Country Hotel

Winners announced in the annual B&NES Building Control awards 2017

The winners and highly commended schemes for this year's Building Control awards were celebrated in the Banqueting Room in the Guildhall recently.

Building Quality Award Winners

Building Type



Domestic Extension

14 Hutton Close, Keynsham

Space Framing Ltd

New Housing

Carrisbrooke, Bathampton Lane, Bathampton

Donovan Construction


Vineyards Farm, Claverton, Bath

Woodpecker Carpentry & Building

Works to a Listed Building

5 Daniel Mews

Sachbar Ltd

Highly Commended – Building Quality

Domestic Extension

45 Gloucester Road, Bath

Blok Building Design and Construction


New Housing


1 Golf Course Road, North Road, Bath

Practical Solutions (Bath) Ltd





St Mary's VC Primary School, Old Road, Writhlington

Oakland Construction

Works to a Listed Building

Cleveland House, Sydney Road, Bath

Emery Brothers Ltd

Design Quality Award Winners

Building Type



Domestic Extension

Hayesbrow, Hayesfield Park, Bath

CaSA Architects

New Housing

Carisbrooke, Bathampton Lane, Bathampton

CaSA Architects


St Mary's VC Primary School, Old Road, Writhlington

BBA Architects

Works to a Listed Building

5 Daniel Mews, Bath

The Architecture Practice

Highly Commended – Design Quality

Domestic Extension

Garrow Cottage, Western Lane, East Harptree


New Housing

4-7 Somerset Place, Bath

ORMS Designers and Architects


Vineyards Farm, Claverton, Bath

dz architecture

Works to a Listed Building

Cleveland House, Sydney Road

Brewster Architectural Design


Customer Responses July 2017 - January 2018

At the completion of every project we inspect we send a short customer questionnaire card to the applicant to ask them about their views on our service. Currently this year 97% of the responses have stated they were either satisfied or very satisfied with our service. Below is a selection of comments made by our customers during this period. We are very grateful to hear from any of our customers about ways in which we could further improve our service.

July 2017

Planning process through to final completion and inspection all was of the highest standard, polite and helpful staff.

Paul Stevens is excellent always available on the phone (or returns call promptly) & very helpful.

Roland was very helpful and a good guy.

An excellent, helpful and supportive service.

Thank you.

Dawn Harvey has been brilliant – accessible, pragmatic and professional throughout.

Dawn Harvey proved to be excellent.

Steve Atkins was very professional and personable and couldn’t have been more helpful.

Dawn was a star for me from the word go and helped me focus on getting all the elements right. Her help and advice steered me through what, at times, was a difficult project. I think she’s a credit to your team and I would like you to pass on my sincere thanks to her.

August 2017

I didn’t speak to you very often as I used an architect, but you were always very helpful and efficient thank you.

Steve Atkins was superb throughout our build and subsequent visit on completion. Professional and friendly. Also huge praise and thanks to Chloe in the office – Went above and beyond for us.

Very Helpful and pleasant to deal with.

Excellent, efficient service on time.

We originally started with an Approved Inspector but found them very unhelpful and unwilling to provide any advice. Swapping to BANES was a great decision. Very Happy.

Very Helpful with prompt service.

Dawn is a wealth of knowledge and we would be happy to deal with her again.

All Excellent thanks

Extremely helpful service. Thank you.

September 2017

Always find staff very professionally and helpful and give great advice.

Very helpful and informative . Always swift and responsive with site visits. Excellent service.

I thought the service was good and advice was very good.

All done efficiently and helpfully

October 2017

Very happy with all of Julians work and professionalism.

Ms Harvey from Building Control was knowledgeable, polite and efficient, keeping us informed at every stage.

Many thanks to all. Thanks for all your help. Mr S Atkins (Brill)

Excellent keep it up.

Oliver Reed was very professional and helpful

Excellent Service, Thank you

November 2017

I phoned on Wednesday, Paul visited our site on Thursday and we had our regularisation certificate emailed through on Friday. You really can’t ask for a better service than that. Really outstanding. Thank you Paul and your team so much for taking some of the stress out of renovating an old house.

We are very pleased with the service you gave us.

December 2017


All staff of the department I dealt with were efficient and professional.

Great service from Paul Stevens and team resolving a historic completion certificate very promptly. Thanks Paul.

I am a plasterer, not a builder. Paul Stevens led me through the build and was on hand with his wealth of knowledge and guidance. Brilliant. Thank you.

We were very pleasantly surprised at how easy the whole thing was – from our very first telephone enquiry to actual inspections and advice given was very helpful. Thank you.

I always found Building Control Services and  B&NES to be very efficient, polite and helpful and professional.

January 2018

As always – Excellent service, thank you for your assistance.

Thank you for being so helpful during the build, it was quite a stressful experience but you have been a pleasure to deal with and made it as painless as possible to me.

It has been a pleasure

Dawn Harvey was excellent, she was extremely professional and explained exactly what the issues were and what options I had. She made the process much less stressful and answered all of my questions.


Housing Standards 

Last year the Govt. issued a Housing Standards consultation which looked at reducing the variance of technical standards that were encroaching into planning decisions with a view to bringing them more into the building regulations. These were in the main around water usage, accessibility, energy conservation and space standards. As a result of the consultation a number of these have been introduced into revised building regulations and Planning authorities have been restricted from  including bespoke technical standards into planning decisions.

With regard to water usage and accessibility the situation now is that if a Planning authority wishes to ask for higher than normal standards in these areas they need to incorporate this into their planning policies and Local Plan with an evidence based approach. If this is successful then the Planning authority can require the higher levels of water economy and accessibility for certain new dwellings. This will then be dealt with under the building regulation application.  The details are as follows:-

Part G – water usage

There is potentially a higher standard of water conservation that can be asked for. This is for 105 litres per person per day rather than the standard level of 125 litres per person per day. Details about how to comply and show compliance are given in the revised Approved Document G (G2)  -


Part M – accessibility

This applies to new dwellings and there are now 3 potential levels of accessibility standard that can be required by Planning authorities. These are:-

Category 1 – Visitable dwellings – which is a per the existing Part M standard.

Category 2 – Accessible and adaptable dwellings – buildings which are more easily accessible and can be easily adapted for disabled people in particular.

Category 3 – Wheelchair user dwellings – these are fully accessible dwellings.

The guidance on the revised standards is given in the new Approved Document M   Part M has been split into two volumes now with Volume 1 applying to dwellings and Volume 2 applying to buildings other than dwellings.

Space standards

The Govt decided after the consultation not to include space standards within the building regulations and this will therefore remain a planning issue. A nationally described space standard has been introduced but this will only apply if it has been included in the Planning authorities Local Plan.

Part L – Conservation of fuel & power

The Govt. decided earlier in the year to put on hold the zero carbon requirement for new dwellings which was due to commence in 2016.

Building regulations information

Recently revised Approved Documents and building regulation information can be found on the website.

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