SQE Health and Safety

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Principal Designer Support

Since the changes to the CDM regulation in 2015 and the introduction of the new role, Principal Designer, there has been some ambiguity about the best way to fulfil the role and whose responsibility it should be.

There seems to be three main schools of thought.

The architect takes on the role of Principal Designer.

If the architect has the necessary skill sets in house then they will take on the role in its entirety.

The architect sources a CDM advisor to be Principal Designer.

This is where the architect does not take on the role but appoints another to undertake it in their stead (often a former CDM Coordinator).




The architect hires a CDM advisor to assist them in their undertaking of the role.

Here the architect will undertake the role of Principal Designer and often subcontract the health and safety aspects of the role (again often a former CDM Coordinator).

All three are acceptable and none is any better or worse than the other.

Whether you are a Principal Designer already or you are looking to undertake the role, not everyone has the necessary skills, knowledge and experience or the time to fulfil the role.

SQE assist the Principal Designer by compiling the Pre-construction safety information at the start of the project and delivering the health and safety file at the end of the project, freeing up the Principal Designers to focus on the design safety aspects of their role.

If you have a project you would like to discuss please contact us or call 029 2036 2033

T: 029 2036 2033 E: info@sqe.ltd.uk