Inspection of Premises

We work to ensure that work premises are safe for employees and visitors to them and that accidents are prevented wherever possible. Inspectors from the Health and Safety Team inspect:

  • Offices
  • Shops
  • Warehouses
  • Places used for leisure activities
  • Other non-industrial premises 

The Health and Safety Team will:

  • Inspect places of work on a routine basis, visiting high-risk premises more frequently to ensure compliance with health and safety law
  • Investigate relevant workplace accidents to employees or others within one working day of being notified
  • Respond to requests for advice or information regarding health and safety within two working days (response to letters and emails within five working days)
  • Licence particular premises (including skin piercing or sex shop establishments)
  • Advise other departments about health and safety at locations with a Public Entertainment Licence, such as cinemas or theatres
  • Work with Planning and Building Control Officers to advise on the health and safety implications of new developments
  • Advise customers and all stakeholders on health and safety issues
  • Work with other health professionals locally and nationally

The Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 is the key act which affects all commercial concerns, whether self-employed or an employee. You can find all the details about the act on the Health and Safety Executive website.


On finding a breach of health and safety law, the inspector will decide what action to take. The action will depend on the nature of the breach. In most cases these are:

  • Informal Action - For minor breaches of the law. Guidance or advice may be offered by talking employees, taking photographs and samples. Information about anything causing concern requiring attention will be given. Following the inspection, a report detailing contraventions and recommendations will be written
  • Improvement Notice - Where the breach of the law is more serious, an improvement notice may be issued with instructions of what needs to be done, and when by to comply with the law. The time is given to make improvements will be at least 21 days to allow an appeal. Further legal action may be taken if the notice is not complied with within the specified period
  • Prohibition Notice - Where a risk of serious personal injury is present, a prohibition notice may be served, with activities only allowed to resume once the action has been taken. The notice will explain why the action is necessary
  • Prosecution - In some cases it may also be necessary prosecute if there has been a failure to comply with an improvement or prohibition notice. The prosecution can carry a fine of up to £20,000, six months imprisonment, or both. Unlimited fines and in some cases imprisonment may be imposed by higher courts
Last updated 19 December 2022
Do you need to get in touch with us? Use our contact form.