BSR ‘will be a regulator with teeth’

Philip White, HSE’s director of building safety (DoBS), has pledged that the Building Safety Regulator (BSR), which becomes fully operational during 2024, “will regulate with teeth”.

Philip White: leading from the front

White has been leading the work to establish fully the BSR in HSE since taking over from Peter Baker in April 2023. His position was made permanent in November 2023.

Writing in his latest blog, White said: “In our oversight for building safety in England, BSR is a regulator with teeth and will take proportionate enforcement action when dutyholders are found to be failing to meet the legal standards required by law under the Building Safety Act 2022. 

“I want to stress that the appropriate use of enforcement powers, including enforcement notices and prosecution, is important, both to secure compliance with law and to ensure that those who have duties under it may be held to account for failures to comply.”

Taking responsibility for risk

White pledged that the BSR would engage with industry to help navigate the new approach to enforcement law: “Our focus will be to ensure that those who create risk take responsibility for controlling that risk and comply with the law.

“And I will be leading from the front to ensure BSR evolves into a bold and effective regulator equipped to deliver on its remit.”

At the end of 2023 the BSR unveiled its three-year strategic plan which sets out how it intends to carry out its building safety functions in the first three years of operation – April 2023 to March 2026 – and what it aims to achieve. 

Strategic priorities include:  

  • ensuring consistent standards within the building control profession;
  • overseeing and driving improvements across the built environment;
  • regulating the planning, design and construction of new higher-risk buildings; and
  • regulating those who are responsible for managing risk in existing higher-risk buildings so that residents are safe.
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