EXCLUSIVE: Cardiff Council operating without an operational manager for building control since at least September 2020

Building control staff are responsible for protecting people from cowboy builders and unsafe practices

Cardiff city centre from Penarth Moors, September 2020. Pic: Richard Szwejkowski

Cardiff Council has operated without a head of building control since at least September 2020, according to the latest published organisational charts for the local authority.

According to the Local Authority Building Control association, building control is important because:

“1. It helps check that buildings are built to building regulations standards
2. Protecting people from cowboy builders and unsafe practices
3. Educating and informing building professionals, contractors and trades people
4. There are penalties when a building or structure isn’t approved by building control
5. Approval from building control is important when selling or re-mortgaging a home
6. Promoting energy efficient and sustainable buildings
7. Making buildings accessible
8. Checking that sports grounds, stadiums and public venues are safe for crowds
9. Protecting the public from dangerous structures
10. Helps keep build quality high”

In answer to freedom of information requests from the Civic Society, Cardiff Council published its organisational charts for September 2020 and February 2021 on WhatDoTheyKnow.com. Both charts show that post of operational manager for building control as ‘vacant’.

A recent report by Unchecked exposed a huge ‘enforcement gap’ in Wales, with many regulators struggling to fulfil their statutory duties.  Unchecked describes itself as an organisation making the case for common-sense protections which help keep people safe and allow businesses to thrive. The report calls on Wales’ political parties to commit to maintaining and strengthening public standards and protections ahead of the 2021 elections

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