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CDM 2015 The Main Changes Explained

CDM 2015

The Construction (Design and Management) Regulations (CDM 2015) are the main set of regulations for managing the health, safety and welfare of construction projects. CDM applies to all building and construction work and includes new build, demolition, refurbishment, extensions, conversions, repair and maintenance. Previously this didn’t include smaller domestic works but now it does. We have put together the main changes that will affect us all have a read and ask yourself, Are you Protected?

As of the 6th April 2015 the revised regulations have come into force with the principal changes for the previous regulations identified below;

Proposed Significant Change Potential Impact
Structural simplification of the Regulations The HSE (Health and Safety Executive) proposes to make them clearer and easier to understand. This is largely aimed at small to medium projects which tend to use Small Medium Enterprise (SME’s) companies
CDM Coordinator role replaced by a ‘Principal Designer’ When the regulations come into force a Client will need to appoint a ‘Principal Designer’ for all projects involving more than one contractor (trade contractor) on site at one time. The principal designer must be of a position to modify design or specification. Any Designers appointed should not carry out any work beyond initial design unless the Principal Designer has confirmed that the Client is aware of their duties.Please note that an existing CDM-Coordinator cannot take on the principal designer role as they do not have a design role within the project, however there is a 6 month transition period for existing projects which must be handed over to a principal designer by October 2015.
Principal Designer and Principal Contractor appointed for all projects with more than one “trade” Contractor on site. The Client must appoint both the Principal Designer and Principal Contractor in writing, otherwise they are deemed to be carrying out these roles
Duties to be applicable to domestic projects. It is proposed for projects involving more than one contractor that the Principal Contractor will normally assume the Client duties. The domestic Client can choose to appoint the Principal Designer for the project. If, however, they do not make this appointment, the first Designer appointed during the pre-construction phase is the Principal Designer for the project. If so, the Principal Designer will be answerable to the Principal Contractor in their role as ‘Client’ for the project and will be responsible for liaising with them.
Construction phase plan is required for all projects. The Client is to ensure a Construction Phase Plan provided by the Contractor or Principal Contractor is in place before any works commence.
Threshold for notification. The Client will need to notify the HSE of projects before works commence if they will exceed 30 construction days with 20 or more workers working simultaneously or if the project exceeds 500 person days
‘Explicit competence’ requirements removed. The Client will need to ensure those that are to be appointed (i.e. Designer, Contractor or Principal Contractor and Principal Designer) can demonstrate appropriate information, instruction, training and supervision.
The current Approved Code of Practice (ACoP) will be substituted with HSE and Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) Industry Guidance. The latest proposal is that a mini ACoP will be published after the legislation goes through on 6 April 2015. Meanwhile HSE Legislation Series and CITB Industry Guidance will be available from January 2015.
Information, Instruction, Training and Supervision (IITS) requirements. Anyone working on a construction project should be able to demonstrate capability and have the necessary resources to fulfil legal duties. They must provide sufficient information in relation to the preparation, provision and, where necessary, revision of health and safety information such as Pre-Construction Information, Construction Phase Plans and Health & Safety Files.


In essence the new regulations will put additional responsibilities on all members of the project team and that is why it is important to use reputable designers and builders who are up to date with the current legislation and can protect themselves and client for penalties from the HSE.

Here at GW Architectural we fully prepared to carry out our roles as principal designer’s, so whether you are planning a project to your home or a builder preparing to start a new project please get in touch and see how we can help. Give us a call on 0191 2696 963 or drop us a line on and we will be more than happy to have a chat.