Party Wall
Apr 30, 2024

Party Wall Act Working Hours

The appointed surveyors have the power under section 10(12) of the Party Wall etc. Act 1996 to determine “the time and...

Award

The appointed surveyors have the power under section 10(12) of the Party Wall etc. Act 1996 to determine “the time and manner of executing any work” covered by a party wall award. This is an important feature of the Act aimed at avoiding unnecessary inconvenience to adjoining owners during construction. The party wall award must contain a clause restricting noisy works in relation to the party wall, party structure or party fence wall to specific hours.

Local Authority

Typical working hours set by Local Authorities for construction sites are usually 8:00 am to 6:00 pm on weekdays and 8:00 am to 1:00 pm on Saturdays. However, subject to legitimate reasons related to the construction project itself, these hours may be altered by the appointed surveyors without falling foul of their duty as described under section 7(1) of the Act which describes no causing unnecessary inconvenience.

Reasonableness

Striking a fair balance between what is required for a ongoing construction and what is preferred by the adjoining owners can sometimes lead to compromises being made – such as delaying noisy works during busy seasons or scheduling specific periods for noisy activities. In other words, it will depend on the circumstances of each case.

Breaks

In situations where highly noisy or disruptive works are taking place, surveyors might permit breaks over weekends or quiet periods during weekdays. The issue will depend on individual cases and findings based on individual circumstances.

Enforcement

Although the Act gives authority over “the time and manner” of executing works under section 10(12), enforcing an award lies with the owners rather than the surveyors themselves. If issues arise then owners can contact their party wall surveyor for them to try to persuade the building owner into complying with terms in the party wall award.