Metropolitan Building Act 1855

JurisdictionUK Non-devolved
Citation1855 c. 122
Anno Regni VICTORI, Britanniarum Regin, Decimo Octavo & Decimo Nono. An Act to amend the Laws relating to the Construction of Buildings in the Metropolis and its Neighbourhood.

(18 & 19 Vict.) C A P. CXXII.

[14th August 1855]

WHEREAS it is expedient that the Laws relating to Buildings in the Metropolis and its Neighbourhood should be amended:' Be it therefore enacted by the Queen's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the Authority of the same, as follows; (that is to say,)

Preliminary.

Preliminary.

S-I Short Title.

I Short Title.

I. This Act may be cited for all Purposes as ‘TheMetropolitan Building Act, 1855.’

S-II Commencement of Act.

II Commencement of Act.

II. This Act shall, except in Cases where it is otherwise expressly provided, come into operation on the First Day ofJanuary One thousand eight hundred and fifty-six.

S-III Interpretation of certain Terms in this Act.

III Interpretation of certain Terms in this Act.

III. In the Construction of this Act (if not inconsistent with the Context) the following Terms shall have the respective Meanings herein-after assigned to them; (that is to say,)

‘The Treasury’ shall mean the Commissioners of Her Majesty's Treasury:

‘Public Building’ shall mean every Building used as a Church, Chapel, or other Place of Public Worship; also every Building used for Purposes of public Instruction; also every Building used as a College, public Hall, Hospital, Theatre, public Concert Room, public Ball Room, public Lecture Room, public Exhibition Room, or for any other public Purposes:

‘External Wall’ shall apply to every outer Wall or vertical Enclosure of any Building not being a Party Wall:

‘Party Wall’ shall apply to every Wall used or built in order to be used as a Separation of any Building from any other Building, with a view to the same being occupied by different Persons:

‘Cross Wall’ shall apply to every Wall used or built in order to be used as a Separation of one Part of any Building from another Part of the same Building, such Building being wholly in One Occupation:

‘Party Structure’ shall include Party Walls, and also Partitions, Arches, Floors, and other Structures separating Buildings, Stories or Rooms which belong to different Owners, or which are approached by distinct Staircases or separate Entrances from without:

The ‘Area’ of every Building shall be deemed to be the Superficies of a horizontal Section of such Building made at the Point of its greatest Surface, including the External Walls and such Portion of the Party Walls as belong to the Building, but excluding any attached Building the Height of which does not exceed the Height of the Ground Story:

‘The Base of the Wall’ shall mean the Course immediately above the Footings:

‘Owner’ shall apply to every Person in possession or receipt either of the whole or of any Part of the Rents or Profits of any Land or Tenement, or in the Occupation of such Land or Tenement other than as a Tenant from Year to Year or for any less Term, or as a Tenant at Will:

‘Builder’ shall apply to and include the Master Builder or other Person employed to execute or who actually executes any Work upon any Building:

‘District Surveyor’ shall mean every such Surveyor who is appointed in pursuance of this Act, or whose Appointment is hereby confirmed, and shall include any Deputy or Assistant Surveyor appointed under this Act:

In all Cases in which the Name of an Officer having local Jurisdiction in respect of his Office is referred to without Mention of the Locality to which the Jurisdiction extends, such Reference is to be understood to indicate the Officer having Jurisdiction in that Place within which is situate the Building or other Subject Matter or any Part thereof to which such Reference applies:

‘Person’ shall include ‘a Body Corporate.’

Limits of Act.

Limits of Act.

S-IV Act to extend to all Places within Limits defined by18 & 19 Vict. c. 120.

IV Act to extend to all Places within Limits defined by18 & 19 Vict. c. 120.

IV. This Act shall extend to all Places within the Limits of the Metropolis as defined by an Act passed in the present Session of Parliament, intituledAn Act for the better local Management of the Metropolis , and to all other Places to which such last-mentioned Act may be extended, unless such Places are, in making such Extension, expressly excepted from the Operation of this Act; but nothing herein contained shall affect the Exercise of any Powers vested by any Act of Parliament in the Commissioners of Sewers of the City of London for the Time being.

S-V Division of Act.

V Division of Act.

V. This Act shall be divided into Five Parts:

(1) (1.) The First Part relating to the Regulation and Supervision of Buildings:

(2) (2.) The Second Part relating to Dangerous Structures:

(3) (3.) The Third Part relating to Party Structures:

(4) (4.) The Fourth Part relating to Miscellaneous Provisions:

(5) (5.) The Fifth Part relating to the Repeal of former Acts, and to temporary Provisions.

I REGULATION AND SUPERVISION OF BUILDINGS.

PART I.

REGULATION AND SUPERVISION OF BUILDINGS.

S-VI Buildings, &c. herein named exempt from Operation ofPart I. of this Act.

VI Buildings, &c. herein named exempt from Operation ofPart I. of this Act.

VI. The following Buildings and Works shall be exempt from the Operation of the First Part of this Act:

Bridges, Piers, Jetties, Embankment Walls, Retaining Walls, and Wharf or Quay Walls:

Her Majesty's Royal Palaces, and any Building in the Possession of Her Majesty, Her Heirs and Successors, or employed for Her Majesty's Use or Service:

Common Gaols, Prisons, Houses of Correction, and Places of Confinement under the Inspection of the Inspectors of Prisons, andBethlehem Hospital , and the House of Occupations adjoining:

The Mansion House, Guildhall, and Royal Exchange of the City ofLondon :

The Offices and Buildings of the Governor and Company of the Bank ofEngland already erected, and which now form the Edifice called ‘The Bank of England ,’ and any Offices and Buildings hereafter to be erected for the Use of the said Governor and Company, either on the Site of or in addition to and in connexion with the said Edifice:

The Buildings of theBritish Museum :

The Offices and Buildings of the HonourableEast India Company already erected, and any Offices or Buildings hereafter to be erected, for the Use of the said Company, on the Site of or in addition to such existing Offices and Buildings:

Greenwich Hospital and the Buildings in the Parish of Greenwich vested in the Commissioners of Greenwich Hospital for the Purposes of the said Hospital:

All County Lunatic Asylums, Sessions Houses, and other public Buildings belonging to or occupied by the Justices of the Peace of the County or City in which the same are situated:

The Erections and Buildings authorized by an Act passed in the Ninth Year of the Reign of His late Majesty KingGeorge the Fourth, for the Purposes of a Market in Covent Garden :

The Cattle Market, with its Appurtenances, erected in pursuance of the Metropolitan Cattle Market Act, 1851:

The Buildings belonging to any Canal, Dock, or Railway Company, and used for the Purposes of such Canal, Dock, or Railway, under the Provisions of any Act of Parliament:

All Buildings, not exceeding in Height Thirty Feet, as measured from the Footings of the Walls, and not exceeding in Extent One hundred and twenty-five thousand Cubic Feet, and not being Public Buildings, wholly in One Occupation, and distant at least Eight Feet from the nearest Street or Alley, whether public or private, and at the least Thirty Feet from the nearest Buildings and from the Ground of any adjoining Owner:

All Buildings not exceeding in Extent Two hundred and sixteen thousand Cubic Feet, and not being Public Buildings, and distant at least Thirty Feet from the nearest Street or Alley, whether public or private, and at the least Sixty Feet from the nearest Buildings and from the Ground of an adjoining Owner:

All Party Fence Walls and Greenhouses so far as regards the necessary Woodwork of the Sashes, Doors, and Frames:

Openings made into Walls or Flues for the Purpose of inserting therein ventilating Valves of a superficial Extent not greater than Forty Square Inches, if such Valves are not nearer than Twelve Inches to any Timber or other combustible Material.

S-VII Application of Act, except Exemptions before mentioned.

VII Application of Act, except Exemptions before mentioned.

VII. With the Exemptions herein-before mentioned, this Act shall apply to all new Buildings; and whenever Mention is herein made of any Building, it shall, unless the contrary appears from the Context, be deemed to imply a new Building.

S-VIII Building, when deemed to be new.

VIII Building, when deemed to be new.

VIII. A Building shall be deemed to be new whenever the enclosing Walls thereof have not been carried higher than the Footings previously to the said First Day ofJanuary One thousand eight hundred and fifty-six: Any other Building shall be deemed to be an old Building.

S-IX Alterations of and Additions to old Buildings.

IX Alterations of and Additions to old Buildings.

IX. Any Alteration, Addition, or other Work made or done for any Purpose, except that of necessary Repair not affecting the Construction of any External or Part Wall, in, to, or upon any old Building, or in, to, or upon any new Building after the Roof has been covered in, shall, to the Extent of such Alteration, Addition, or Work, be subject to the Regulations of this Act; and whenever Mention is herein-after made of any Alteration, Addition, or Work in, to, or upon any Building, it shall, unless the contrary appears from the Context, be deemed to imply an Alteration, Addition, or Work to which this Act applies.

S-X Rebuilding old Buildings.

X Rebuilding old Buildings.

X. Whenever any old Building has been taken down...

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