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New amendments to Approved Document M Vol 2

From January 2021, at least one Changing Places facility will be required in the following buildings:

  1. a) assembly, recreation and entertainment buildings with a capacity for 350 or more people; or
    b) a collection of smaller buildings associated with a site used for assembly, recreation or entertainment, such as zoos, theme parks and venues for sport and exhibitions, with a capacity of 2000 people or more;
  2. shopping centres/malls or retail parks with a gross floor area of 30,000m² or more;
  3. retail premises with a gross floor area of 2500m² or more; even if these premises are within a larger complex where a changing places toilet is also required.
  4. sport and leisure buildings with a gross floor area more than 5000m²;
  5. hospitals and primary care centres;
  6. crematoria and cemetery buildings.

The following buildings are defined as places of assembly, recreation and entertainment:

  • amusement arcades;
  • art galleries;
  • cinemas;
  • concert halls;
  • conference centres;
  • hotels that provide function, sport or leisure facilities;
  • libraries open to the public;
  • motorway service areas;
  • museums;
  • places of worship;
  • theatres;
  • Any other buildings or sites with similar uses and open to the public will be covered.
  • University and further education buildings open to the public are also covered (guidance on the provision of Changing Places facilities in school is expected from the Department of Education next year.)

The capacity trigger thresholds of 350 or 2000 for all these venues can be derived from the combined total of a building’s publicly accessible facilities. For example, a hotel’s capacity might be derived from the hotel’s function and sport or leisure facilities combined. Alternatively, the capacity number may be taken as the number of fixed seats provided, if the occupants of the building will normally be seated. Approved Document B volume 2 provides a method for estimating the capacity of a building where this is not known.

Diagrams courtesy

Changing Places - a Practical Guide
Download the Guide

Published date: 12th August 2020.

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