What's happening with CDM in Northern Ireland?

19 August 2015

CDM in Britain

The Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 (CDM 2015) came into force in Great Britain on 6 April 2015 and replaced CDM 2007.

The new regulations have introduced a number of significant changes in the following areas:

  • Significant structural simplification of the regulations
  • Replacement of the Approved Code of Practice (ACoP) with targeted guidance
  • Replacement of the CDM Co-ordinator role with a new role, that of the ‘principal designer’
  • Removal of explicit competence requirements and replacing with a specific requirement for appropriate skills, knowledge, training and experience
  • Addressing issues regarding temporary sites for domestic clients
  • The threshold for appointment of co-ordinators.

What about Northern Ireland?

In Northern Ireland the CDM Regulations (NI) 2007 are still in force. The Health and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland (HSENI) closed its consultation on proposals to replace the 2007 Regulations on 23 March 2015. Since then HSENI has been reviewing the consultation responses and considering its options. This process included a stakeholder engagement event in June at which RSUA was represented.

HSENI is working towards bringing a proposed course of action to the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Investment by October 2015.

Regardless of what proposals are put to the Minister in the autumn it will take months before any changes to CDM take effect. It is likely that new CDM regulations will not be operational in Northern Ireland until late 2016.

What happens in the meantime?

As the CDM Regulations (NI) 2007 are likely to be in place for at least another year there are some issues that architects should be aware of.

From 6 October 2015 the transitional arrangements from CDM 2007 to CDM 2015 in Britain will come to an end. At this stage the CDM 2007 Approved Code of Practice (ACoP) will lose its legal status. RSUA believes it would be helpful to the local construction sector if HSENI formally endorsed the use the CDM 2007 ACoP in Northern Ireland after 6 October 2015.

RSUA plans to meet with HSENI in September to raise this issue and to further discuss the potential changes to CDM in Northern Ireland. Members will be kept informed of progress.

RSUA is keenly aware that many members are working in Great Britain and that those members need to be competent as a ‘Principal Designer’. To assist members RSUA is partnering with the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) to deliver a one day Continuing Professional Development event in early November entitled CDM 2015: The Principal Designer and Designer - Demonstrating Capability. Members will receive a considerable discount on the cost of this training. To register interest in this event, please contact Julia Leaker (Julia@rsua.org.uk).