Securing the future

As the UK went into lockdown in March 2020, forward-thinking businesses used the economic hiatus as a strategic opportunity to regroup, research customer needs, and develop plans to improve and extend their service portfolio to better meet their customers’ needs. Richard Bate, founder and technical director of Ukas-accredited provider of product testing and certification company Build Check, explains.

During lockdown it became evident that UK fabricators were looking for business partners that were not only experts in compliance testing but who were available on demand to reliably deliver a complete range of laboratory or on-site testing, and to help them deal effectively with the ‘new normal’.

One subject that arises frequently is security certification requirements for the buoyant new-build sector. Fabricators seem unsure of what they are required to do and how they should go about it.

In this, the first of a series of monthly columns addressing the dos, don’ts, whys and wherefores of compliance, I will look at the elements of fenestration security requirements for new build dwellings: Approved Document Q, PAS24 and Secured by Design.

The most common question is: what do I need to do to comply with Document Q?

Approved Document Q is the statutory guidance for the Building Regulation covering security in new-build dwellings in England and Wales (own version) and covers the minimum mandatory standards for doors and windows to resist physical attack by a burglar. It includes standards on being both sufficiently robust and fitted with appropriate hardware.

If your client’s requirement is compliance with Document Q, then all you need to do is pass the PAS 24 tests for each product you are going to supply.

Product Assessment Standard PAS 24 is a set of tests that assesses the security of doors and windows against the efforts of an opportunistic burglar. All that is needed to comply with Document Q is test evidence that you have passed the security aspects of PAS 24.

In our next columns we will look at what is covered by the tests and how we can help you optimise your testing and minimise your costs.

We will also explain Secured by Design in a subsequent column. SBD is a police initiative that improves the security of buildings and their immediate surroundings. It may be a client requirement for some projects. It is not, however, a requirement for Building Regulations (Approved Document Q) compliance.

Build Check will be pleased to help you with your PAS 24 journey and has prepared a simple ‘Guide to PAS 24’. If you would like a free copy then call 01494 452713 or email