Can I build
scaffolding without a Licence?

We get asked this many times, how high can you build scaffolding without a licence? And the answer is, 4 meters – in fact scaffolding work is defined with a four-metre threshold for licencing purposes. This means in some cases a high-risk work licence may not be required to erect a scaffold, due to it being less than four-meter. However, there may still be needed for health and safety purposes.

mega new care home development in Soilhull - Can I build scaffolding without a Licence?

Scaffolding: The Rules

The trusted RG Scaffolding-Solihull team look at the regulations around using scaffolding without a licence, what you and your trader should actually know.

If you ask five different people about whether or not to use scaffolding without a licence and you’ll probably get five different answers. However, there is a common misconception that ladders and stepladders are banned when traders work at heights, but the law recognises that low-risk situations do not require a scaffolding licence. It’s more of a matter of using common sense.

mega new care home development in Soilhull, Warwickshire

When do you need scaffolding?

It is up to your trader to assess the level of risk and use the appropriate equipment. Fixing a single broken tile on a low roof would not be the same as installing solar panels 20 stories up. However, it really depends what work you are doing exactly, and the level of risk that involves.

Traders do need to ensure their staff are safe as they work on the property. This means working from the ground if possible. However, if they need to work at height, they must minimise the risk of falling by using scaffolding, which will require a scaffolding licence.

What sort of scaffolding is needed?

Most scaffold around residential properties will follow an established, standard structure. Supported scaffolding is built from the base upwards to set design.

Although, if it is not possible to use a straightforward standard configuration – a scaffolder or contractor must create a bespoke design to ensure the strength, rigidity and stability of the structure is steady while it’s being built, used and dismantled.

Scaffolding without a licence?

If you’re a builder or scaffolder needing to put up scaffolding within the boundary of a domestic property there is no need for a licence, but if the structure needs to be built on/near a pavement or road outside the domestic property, the scaffolder must get a licence from the local council – for instance, Solihull Council, West Midlands Council or Warwickshire council.

Also, if there is a risk to the public, you must schedule scaffolding work for quiet times or get a highway closure from the local council.

Scaffolding insurance

Scaffolders face a unique set of risks due to working at height. Builders or scaffolding firms need insurance that covers those risks, including public liability insurance to cover any injury to the public caused by falling items from the scaffold as well as employers’ liability insurance to cover their people if they are injured while working at height. It is worth checking that they have this insurance in place, before starting work.

When should you check scaffolding?

It is by law that the hirer or user of the scaffolding, must check the scaffold structure, to make sure it is safe to use and that it won’t cause any danger to the public. These are the following you should do:

  • Before any scaffolders/builders use it
  • Every seven days when it’s erected
  • After alterations, damage or extreme weather conditions.


It is also the law that any work done on a domestic property or corporate area where work is being done, should have a health and safety supervisor on site at all times, to reduce the risk of serious injury, falls, or death.

The Cost of Scaffolding and scaffold inspection in birmingham

We take immense pride in every job we undertake and hence we make sure we deliver the job with perfection and quality. Upon taking up a contract, we will visit the location first and prepare suitable Scaffolding design.

Health and Safety of our employees as well as other personnel on site is of paramount importance to us. We make sure we adhere to all security norms and regulations to be adhered during the scaffolding work.

checklist for scaffolding

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