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Alex Hamer
Written by Alex Hamer

Principal Designer Duties

What are the Duties of the Principal Designer?


General Duties


  • The Principal Designer MUST have the Skills, Knowledge and Training & Experience (SKATE) to take on the role
  • If the Principal Designer appoints any other Designers or Contractors – Make sure they have the necessary SKATE
  • Co-operate with everyone involved in the project and make sure everyone else co-operates with each other
  • Report any Health & Safety issues, that they become aware of, to whom they are working for
  • When providing information or instruction – make sure it is comprehensible and provided in good time


Specific Duties

The Principal Designer must

  • Plan, manage and monitor Health and Safety in the Pre-Construction Phase, in particular, when;
  • Design, technical and organisational aspects of the project are being decided
  • Estimating periods of time required for programming the work
  • Assist the Client in providing the Pre Construction Information
  • Make sure that all designs take account of the General Principles of Prevention to identify and eliminate foreseeable risks to people building, maintaining, cleaning & using a structure where possible.
  • Control residual risks and provide clear information on these to other duty holders when it isn't possible to eliminate them
  • Ensure all other designers comply with their duties
  • Assist the Client in providing the Pre Construction Information & distribute this to all other duty holders
  • Liaise with the Principal Contractor in planning the Construction Phase and assist the PC in preparing the Construction Phase Plan.
  • Prepare the Health and Safety File during the Pre-Construction Phase, develop this during the construction phase and hand it to the client on completion.

Note - This page is for guidance only. Application on a project must comply with the official HSE issue of the Regulations