Building Regulations & Part L

Building Regulations and Part L

The Building Regulations specify how new buildings must be constructed to achieve a minimum level of acceptable performance. They typically cover health, safety, energy performance and accessibility requirements for buildings.

The Building Regulations only apply to new building work and there is no general requirement for all existing buildings to be upgraded to meet these standards. However, certain ‘material aterations’ can trigger the need to comply with Building Regulations for work to existing buildings.

Part L of the Building Regulations ‘The Conservation of Fuel and Power ‘ seeks to improve the energy effiiciency of all buildings. For existing buildings including historic buildings and those of traditional construction this means reducing heat losses wherever possible without damaging their special character or compromising their performance.

Part L was revised in 2002 and 2006 and further revisions have come into effect from October 2010.

Energy Conservation and Historic Buildings

Energy Conservation and Historic Buildings- application of Part L of the Building Regulations to historic and traditionally constructed buildings

This guidance has been produced to help prevent conflicts between the energy efficiency requirements in Part L of the Building Regulations and the conservation of historic and traditionally constructed buildings.The advice acts as ‘second tier’ supporting guidance in the interpretation of Approved Documents L1B and L2B that should be taken into account when determining appropriate enrgy performance standards for works to historic and traditionally constructed buildings.

The guidance supersedes English Heritage’s previous publication ‘Building Regulations and Historic Buildings: an interim guidance note on the application of Part L (2004) and covers the follwing areas:

  •  the background to the legislation and the need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions
  • an interpretation of the regulations themselves as applied to historic and traditionally constructed buildings
  • guidance on understanding the building  before carrying out upgrading works,
  • meeting the requirements of Part L and the thermal upgrading of various building elements


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