Assent Building Control Limited says discussions continue after regulator confirms work on higher-risk schemes must stop because firm did not register as approved inspector

The Building Safety Regulator has issued a clarification after an email alert that appeared to suggest a building control firm was not registered as an approved inspector.

A note sent out from the Building Safety Regulator (BSR), which is part of the Health and Safety Executive, ordered work on more than 50 “higher risk” schemes to stop because of issues with two private building control surveyors.

This included Assent Building Control, which the note correctly said had decided not to register as an approved inspector under the new building safety regime.

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The HSE said work being carried out by Assent Building Control on a series of higher risk projects would need to stop

But the note did not mention that the firm was the parent company of three entities which are registered building control approvers, LB Building Control, Oculus Building Consultancy, and Clarke Banks.

In a LinkedIn post yesterday, the Assent group clarified that it operates through the three licensed entities in providing building control services to in-progress higher risk building projects, which are primarily residential buildings over 18m in height.

However, it also said the unregistered parent company, Assent Building Control Limited, has been working with the Building Safety Regulator and its clients on a “small number” of higher risk projects.

The HSE has now confirmed that work on these schemes would have to stop immediately because of Assent Building Control’s decision not to register as an approved inspector.

>> See also: Regulator tells teams to down tools on 50 ‘higher risk’ schemes due to building safety issues

The regulator said: “Assent Building Control Limited chose not to register as a registered building control approver under the new Building Safety Regulator regime. As a result, it was no longer authorised to oversee higher-risk buildings.

“This decision meant that Assent Building Control Ltd had to immediately cease work relating to HRBs. Consequently, any HRB projects they were handling had to be transferred to the Building Safety Regulator for approval.”

The statement added that Assent Building Control Ltd can continue to provide building control services until the end of the transitional period for the new regime on 1 October, but only on non-higher risk buildings.

Assent Building Control said that the regulator is “fully aware” of the higher risk projects it had been working on with the regulator and its clients, and that “discussions continue”.

It added: “Our commitment to maintaining high standards is reflected in our workforce. All Registered Building Inspectors within the Assent Group will continue to serve our clients”.

The other firm mentioned in the HSE’s original note was AIS Surveyors Ltd, a registered building control approver which went into compulsory liquidation in May after it was taken to court by a creditor.

The note said the more than 50 projects affected would need to down tools until their building control applications had been validated by the HSE.

The new regime, which came into force last October, means that the regulator must sign off all higher risk buildings defined as being at least 18m, or seven storeys, in height and containing either a care home or hospital or at least two residential units.