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Demolition guidance

Demolishing part or all of a building should preferably be undertaken by a professional contractor. However, it is your responsibility as an owner to ensure that demolition is carried out in a safe manner and all relevant notifications are given.

You must give our Building Control service at least 6 weeks' notice of any demolition work you are intending unless it is:

  • the result of a demolition order issued by the Council

  • an internal part of an occupied building that will continue to be occupied

  • a building less than 50m3 externally measured

  • a greenhouse, conservatory, shed or prefabricated garage even if it is part of a larger building

  • an agricultural building which is not adjacent to another building.

Serving a notice of intended demolition

Unless the proposed demolition meets the above criteria, you will need to serve us with a demolition notice under Section 80 of the Building Act 1984.

In order for us to process your demolition notice, you must provide:

  • a 1:1250 location plan clearly indicating the buildings to be demolished, all adjacent properties and existing drainage systems to be sealed

  • confirmation that you have notified service providers such as gas, electric and water by sending them a copy of the notice of intended demolition and the location plan. They can then arrange with you for their services to be safely disconnected.

You will also need to notify any occupants of adjacent buildings.

If the building contains any asbestos, you need to inform the Health and Safety Executive.

Once you have notified the relevant parties, you can complete our online Section 80 Demolition Notice. Alternatively, you can request a copy by telephone on 01483 444545 or email buildingcontrol@guildford.gov.uk

What happens next?

Within 6 weeks of receiving your completed demolition notice, we will issue a Section 81 counter notice. This will specify conditions that have to be met during the demolition works, in order to maintain public safety.

You may be required, after the completion of the demolition, to demonstrate that these steps have been followed.

It is an offence to commence demolition unless you have submitted a demolition notice to Building Control and either received a counter notice response or 6 weeks has elapsed since you gave us notice.

If you have any further questions regarding your proposed demolition, please contact our Building Control service.

Conservation area consent

Some demolition also requires prior approval and conservation area consent. If the building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990, you will also need Listed Building Consent before starting work.

Our conservation team can advise you if this applies to your building and they can be contacted by telephone on 01483 444667 or by email at conservation@guildford.gov.uk