External Timber Cladding and Fire Risk
Guidance to Amended Building Regulations – revised July 2022
In the wake of the Grenfell fire tragedy, the UK government has conducted a series of consultations into the use of different cladding materials
on high rise buildings. The results of the latest of these, published in late June 2022, confirm that timber, where necessary enhanced with
flame retardant, continues to be approved as a suitable material for external cladding and balconies on residential buildings, under Building
Regulations, for BUILDINGS BELOW 11 METRES in England, Wales and in Scotland.
WPA , TDUK and TDCA recommendations
These three industry bodies strongly advocate that an independent, professional fire risk assessment that considers building
design, use, materials and location is essential at the design stage for multi-occupancy and assembly buildings, such as
community centres and schools – regardless of height.
Furthermore, in multi-occupancy and assembly buildings, timber-based cladding and balcony components should be treated using a
quality assured factory-applied flame retardant to Euroclass B performance levels – the highest ‘reaction to fire’ standard achievable
for an organic substrate – unless shown NOT to be necessary by an appropriate risk assessment process. This principle of risk assessment
is embodied in the Construction Design and Management Regulations and is reinforced by the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local