Building Blocks: The Building Safety Bill - The Golden Thread


Following the Grenfell fire, Dame Judith Hackitt led an independent review of building regulations and fire safety. The report, Building a Safer Future, recommended a ‘golden thread’ of good quality information, for buildings to be designed, built and managed safely. The report suggests that those who commission building work or participate in the design and construction process must create and maintain a digital 'golden thread' of building information related to fire and structural safety that is accessible and up to date.

The government will be implementing Dame Judith Hackitt’s golden thread recommendations through the Building Safety Bill. The Bill is said to bring in 'ground-breaking reforms to give residents and homeowners more rights, powers and protections – making homes across the country safer'.

During Construction 

During the design and construction phase the golden thread should contain information required to demonstrate compliance with building regulations. During this time those responsible are called Dutyholders. When the building is occupied, the Accountable Person ( as defined in the Bill) will be responsible for coordinating the golden thread of safety information and ensuring it is updated, accurate and accessible.

Once Works are Complete

When the building works are completed the golden thread will be passed to the person responsible for the completed building, who is called the Principal Accountable Person.

In occupied buildings the golden thread should contain the information required for the safety of the building and its residents.


For buildings going through refurbishment, the golden thread will need to contain the relevant documents approved by the regulator under building control applications.

The information held in the golden thread will be critical to supporting Dutyholders, the Principal Accountable Person and Accountable Persons in their duty to ensure building safety.


Under the Building Safety Bill, building owners will be obliged to manage safety risks during the design, construction, completion and occupation of buildings.

The owners must consider safety at every stage of a building’s lifetime, from the earliest stage of the planning process to occupation.

Building owners will also need to prove that they have effective measures in place to manage safety risks. Those who don’t meet their obligations may face criminal charges.

This blog is part of a series published by Howard Kennedy LLP on the Building Safety Bill. For more information please contact Fiona Price, Sharon Stark or Stuart Duffy. For other blogs on the Bill, please click here.

featured image