Stand Build Regulations
- Electics & Service Supply
- Emergency Exits & Direction of Escape
- Enclosed Stands / Walling in Open Sides
- Equality Act
- Exhibitor Responsibilities Form
- Fire & Safety Regulations
- Floor Loading Restrictions
- Hazardous Substances
- Hot Works / Permits
- Live Edge Working Procedures
- Meeting Rooms
- Organisers Rights to Change Stands and Floorplan Layout
Stand Build Regulations
Below you will find stand build regulations which must be applied to your space only stand design. We have highlighted various general regulations which you may find helpful when designing your stand however please note that this is not a definitive list of regulations. It is the responsibility of the exhibitor and their contractor to ensure their stand design complies with all applicable stand build regulations detailed in the venue technical regulations.
Failure to comply with the regulations laid out below may lead to your permission to build being revoked and changes to the stand build being undertaken onsite or complete removal of the stand.
The eGuide can be downloaded here.
The venue technical regulations can be downloaded here.
Temporary Changes to Stand Build Regulations during COVID-19
Visitors will have got comfortable being in spaces like offices, shops and public transport before coming to exhibitions. They will have developed new behaviours and expectations of the design and cleanliness of any new space they enter and that includes exhibitors’ stands. All of us need to make sensible adjustments to the space we are responsible for managing at exhibitions to ensure we maintain a safe environment.
The new measures highlighted below are temporary for 2021 and we expect to remove them from future shows, as soon as the current situation has passed. We also do not want to impose additional cost on exhibitors by asking them to make substantial changes to their usual stand design. Therefore the aim of these changes is to:
- Simplify your design and create more open space for people move freely around. Simply leave elements out for this year rather than complete redesign.
- Double decks and enclosed meeting areas are not permitted to improve ventilation on the stand.
- Add cleaning and sanitisation measures for staff and customer use.
Please note that chipboard, particleboard and low-density fibreboard (LDF) is not suitable for construction and in particular of weight bearing structures. The H&S Manager and Structural Engineer will identify stands which do not comply during the build process and all necessary remedial work must be completed before the stand will be permitted to open.
Complex structures often, but not always, mean more elements to build. These can restrict space on the stand for visitors and exhibiting personnel. In addition complex structures require more staff to build them and often in close proximity. Complex structures are therefore permitted but only once the exhibitor and their contractor has demonstrated what additional COVID-19 measures they have implemented for build, the open period and breakdown.
A complex structure is any form of construction, either ground-based or suspended, that, through risk assessment has been found to present a significant risk.
The following are classed as complex structures:
- Double deck structures (not Permitted).
- Any structure, regardless of its height, which requires structural calculations.
- Any part of a stand or exhibit which exceeds 4 metres in height. See Build Height Limits for restrictions.
- Custom-built/bespoke suspended structures
- Platforms and stages over 600mm in height
- Anything deemed by the organiser to be a complex structure
All complex structures, must submit technical drawings and structural calculations electronically to our online stand design submission system (SCS) along with all other stand plan submission documents.
Late submission of complex stand details or the failure to supply sufficient detail, including structural calculations will result in permission to build over 4m in height or your suspended structure not being granted.
Technical drawings must show the form and dimensions of every structural element with appropriate general arrangement plan, sections and elevations, including full details of stairways if applicable. All calculations of loading and strength must be in English, and all drawings must be to scale.
Construction & Dismantle Phase Plan (CDPP)
As part of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 all space only stands, or shell scheme stands with construction, are deemed their own construction sites and the Construction & Dismantle Phase Plan (CDPP) is a compulsory document which needs to be submitted along with you stand plans, risk assessments and method statement. All Health & Safety documentation must also demonstrate all additional COVID-19 measures that have been implemented for the build, open and breakdown.
COVID-19 H&S Documentation
COVID-19 H&S Documentation should demonstrate that the following have been considered, and appropriate safety measures have been implemented and communicated;
- Cleaning & hygiene
- Staff procedures and welfare
COVID-19 H&S Documentation should include, but is not limited to:
- Exhibitor Responsibilities Form.
- A detailed risk assessment for show open, identifying any risks with working onsite and what control measures are put in place to protect both your workers and others from COVID-19. This does not need to be submitted but must be available if requested.
- A COVID-19 risk assessment for build and breakdown (only required from space only stands, or shell scheme stands who are building within their stand – submit via SCS)
- Any other documents you, or your contractors deem necessary e.g. COVID-19 Contingency Plan, Travel policies etc. We do not need copies of these documents submitted.
On divided sites, you are responsible for erecting and decorating dividing walls facing onto your stand area to a minimum height of 2.5m. Walls above 2.5m must be clad and finished on both sides, with the reverse side being decorated from 2.5m upwards by the Exhibitor who has erected them. Such walls overlooking adjoining stands must be finished in a neutral plain colour only. The minimum height for dividing walls is 2.5m.
The maximum height for dividing walls of single-storey stands is 4m. This is 4m from the venue floor to the top of the wall and not from the top of your platform.
Doors - Vision Panels
Where doors are present on your stand they must follow the below guidance;
- The required minimum effective clear width of a door is 800mm.
- Doors must have a vision panel with a zone of visibility spanning from 500mm to 1500mm above the floor. The exception to this is doors to small storerooms, where a small panel may suffice.
- Emergency exit doors must open outwards in the direction of escape.
- Doors must be recessed where they open on to public circulation areas, e.g. they must not open directly on to a gangway.
- Sliding doors are not acceptable as emergency exit doors.
There is zero tolerance on dust-creating activities in the halls to avoid additional hazards from coughing and reducing cleaning requirements. All dust must be extracted at source by mechanical means. MDF and chipboard must not be machined on site, as the dust produced is hazardous to health.
Electrical Installations & Testing
Exhibitors and contractors must comply with The Electricity at Work Regulations, the IEE Wiring Regulations, the EVA Electrical Regulations and the venue's electrical regulations.
All work must be carried out by competent and qualified electricians and all temporary installations must be protected by an RCD and inspected before power is supplied to the stand.
All electrical installations should be carried out by the official contractor. During the build up and breakdown, power must only be taken from the temporary supplies provided by the official electrical contractor and not from cleaners sockets or other hall sockets.
Please contact the Electrical Contractor to arrange a temporary power supply. Power will be switched off 1/2 hour following show close on each day, particularly on the last day of show as power will not be reconnected after this time.
There should be sufficient correctly installed and rated power sockets to preclude the use of extension leads and long trailing flexes. If essential, extension leads must be correctly fused and limited to one per socket. Multi-sockets must not be used.
IMPORTANT CHANGES THAT AFFECT EVERY STAND AT UK EXHIBITIONS
The regulations for temporary electrical installations in the UK have changed. This change affects your stand so please read the summary below.
Every electrical circuit in a temporary installation (such as at an exhibition) now requires additional safety testing when it is installed. This is a change that affects the whole UK and is not specific to the exhibition industry, our show or venue.
This is a significant change and the UK exhibition associations have worked together to create a new process for this testing that minimises the impact and cost on our exhibitors. The costs are solely to cover the labour involved in the testing.
These changes are described below:
Shell Scheme Exhibitors
Shell scheme installations are relatively simple, are installed by the official electrical contractor but there are a lot of them. Therefore we have been able to minimise the costs of testing any one installation. When shell scheme exhibitors orders any additional electrical item from the order form they will automatically be charged a one off flat fee of £15+VAT to test their stand.
This contributes towards the cost of the testing, the official electrical contractor will do the test and there is nothing else the exhibitor needs to do.
Space Only Exhibitors who use the official electrical contractor to install their electrics.
Most exhibitors building their own stand use the official electrical contractor to do the electrical installation for them. When the official electrical contractor quotes for the installation they will also automatically include the cost of the additional testing. This cost will vary depending on the complexity of the installation but it will be no more than £150+VAT.
Space Only Exhibitors who buy the mains only and use their own electricians to install their circuits.
A few large exhibitors buy only the mains supply from the official electrical contractor and their own stand builder's electricians do the installation. When they order this 'mains only' supply, the official electrical contractor already do some checks and approve them as being competent to do their own installation. This process will now be more rigorous and the stand builder's electrician will now need to be approved as competent to install and test their own installation.
If the stand builder's electrician cannot or does not want to do their own testing then the official electrical contractor can quote for that work.
PLEASE NOTE: Some electrics on stands are designed as 'plug and play' this means that often the stand builder's electrician who comes onsite is not a qualified electrician as they are only plugging items together. However, these electrics now need to be tested once they are all plugged together. If you have qualified electricians on your stand they will be able to do this testing themselves and there will be no additional cost to you. However, if your electricians are not qualified then you will need to ask your stand builder to bring someone who is qualified or get a quote for the testing from the official electrical contractor.
For more information please click here to access the e-guide.
Where your stand is located in the halls will determine if the electricity will come from the floor, from the pillars and also from above your stand. For more information please contact the Operations Team here.
Electrics & Service Supply
Please note that when ordering electrics, you need to complete the electrical grid form to ensure that the electrics are fitted as per your requirements. Should a grid not be submitted, the items will be positioned at the discretion of the contractor and charges may be levied for onsite changes.
During build up, initial connections to stands are made as early as possible but in some cases this could mean opening morning if the stand is not complete. The power to all stands will be switched off 30 minutes after close of the show each day. Please also remember to order 24hr power supply for the open period if required. On the breakdown power will be switched off 15 minutes after show close and will not be reinstated. if you require power during this time please ensure that you order this through GES.
Space only exhibitors and their contractors are advised to contact GES to arrange a temporary power supply for actual construction of stands if required.
Emergency Exits & Direction of Escape
Alternative escape must be available from any point within a stand or structure leading to a place of safety. Escape routes should have a minimum, unobstructed height of 2.1m, other than within doorways, which should have a clear height of not less than 2.06m.
The minimum permitted gangway width is 2 metres, except within stands of less than 100m2, where gangways must be no less than 1m wide.
There should be no obstruction that could impede the free flow of people using the escape route.
All floors should be even and have a firm, smooth and slip-resistant finish. Trip hazards should be avoided.
The maximum travel distance from any part of a stand to a gangway shall not exceed 50 metres. Where there is only one means of escape from the stand, this must be reduced to 20 metres. In either case, the maximum travel distance should be reduced by 25% where alcohol is being served.
Enclosed Stands / Walling in Open Sides
You should avoid enclosing areas of your stand as this restricts air flow. If enclosing larger areas of your stand you must have a COVID-19 management plan in place and approval subject to Organisers.
It is the exhibitors responsibility to remove all barriers to service and make their stand accessible to wheelchair users to comply with The Equality Act (UK Only). Where exhibitors have a platform on a stand over 13mm, a reasonable adjustment is to incorporate a ramp into the platform within the stand area. Whatever the content of the stand is, it needs to be accessible to all. Please note the following when designing your stand:
- Stands with platforms that exceed 13mm should incorporate a ramp into their stand design.
- Ensure that your stand incorporates enough space. The DDA requires 1.2 metres aisle width - though only 750mm for an internal door - suggesting that 750mm would be enough.
- The gradient of any ramp should be no greater than 1:12.
- If a stand is a double-decker, then it is probably not practical to offer lifts. Therefore please ensure that any services such as refreshments can be brought downstairs on a tray for those that need it.
- Serving counters should have a low access point no higher than 760mm or a lap tray should be provided for the convenience of disabled people.
Exhibitor Responsibilities Form
As an exhibitor, you have a legal duty of care for the safety of anyone on your stand who may be affected be your actions or omissions. You are ultimately responsible for all aspects of health & safety on your stand during the build, the open period of the show and during the break down. This form is required for exhibitors to confirm that you have complied with official guidance and updated regulations within the Exhibitor Manual, within our updated site rules and on all pre-show communication, on managing the risk of COVID-19.
The Exhibitor Responsibilities Form is a compulsory form that must be completed by all Exhibitors, as soon as possible.
To complete the Exhibitor Responsibilities Form please click here.
Fire & Safety Regulations
There are strict rules governing what materials can be used to build stands and these will be covered by the venue’s regulations. Exhibitors and contractors must ensure that they are followed. In general, you are not permitted to build your stand with anything that is flammable or non-flame resistant unless it has been treated.
All stand construction and displays must be made from fireproofed materials and installed to the satisfaction of the authorities.
Any goods attached to your stand will constitute part of your stand and will be subject to these regulations.
Timber Used in Stand Construction & Displays
- All timber under 25mm thick must be impregnated (pressure process) to Class 1 Standard. Treated materials will have BS 476 - PART 7 - CLASS 1 marked on them.
- Boards, plywood, chipboard etc must be treated in the same way if they are under 18mm thick. The exception to this is MDF, which is acceptable for use due to its density. MDF and chipboard must not be machined on site, as the dust produced is hazardous to health.
Plastics / Stand Dressing
- All plastics must conform to BS 476 - PART 7 - CLASS 1. Polucarbonate materials such as Lexan and Macralon are acceptable. PERSPEX MUST NOT BE USED.
- Artificial plants and flowers which are combustible and give off toxic fumes must not be used for stand dressing. Silk type flowers are acceptable providing they have been fireproofed to BS 476 PART 7 and are marked as such. Plastic security night-sheets must also conform to the above standard.
Fabrics Used in Displays
- Drapes, curtains, hangings etc. must be inherently or durably flame-proofed. Otherwise they may be treated with a proprietary flame retardant. Test certificates must be available for inspection for any materials intended to be used.
- Fabrics used for interior stand decoration must be fixed taut and/or in tight pleats (not loosely draped) to a solid backing, secured above floor level and not touching light fittings.
- Curtains on exit routes should hang 75mm clear of the floor, be parted in the centre and not conceal any exit signs.
- All glazing used in the construction of stands must consist of laminated safety glass with a minimum thickness of 6mm. Areas of glazing within 800mm of floor level and over 0.5m2, where the smaller dimension of the pane is greater than 250mm, must conform to the thicknesses shown below:
Nominal Thickness Maximum pane size dimensions
8mm 1100mm x 1100mm
10mm 2250mm x 2250mm
12mm 4500mm x 4500mm
15mm or thicker No limits
Combustible waste must be safely disposed of. Please do not store boxes, packaging or large amounts of literature on your stand.
Fire patrols will be present throughout all phases of the event. Firefighting equipment is provided in the halls and fire extinguishers of approved pattern and capacity will be provided.
If you have a hazardous substance on your stand, please confirm the details in writing to the Organisers so that written approval can be given.
Hazardous substances are not be brought into the halls unless essential. The use of hazardous substances must be subject to a COSHH assessment. Exhibitors must declare the use or display of hazardous substances as a special risk.
Hot Works / Permits
A hot work permit must be obtained from the organisers office prior to any work being carried out. The issue of the permit is subject to the advance submission of a suitable and sufficient risk assessment and method statement for the activity, with evidence of competency for the use of any specialist equipment.
At this time, exhibitors should only provide packaged food. This is available from the official catering provider and can be delivered to stands. As a result, cooking on stands and food preparation is not required and therefore kitchens are not permitted. Catering should only be provided by the official caterer.
See the Exhibitor Catering section for full information on what is permitted this year.
Live Edge Working Procedure
A Live Edge Working Procedure will be enforced for the construction and dismantling phases where applicable. Live Edge Working will be permitted onsite by the Safety Officer once the control measures described in the risk assessment and method statement and been verified with the construction team when they arrive onsite. Work will be stopped if the construction team are working without permission or if the construction team are found working unsafely and not following the procedures identified in the risk assessment and method statement. Any additional working hours required to make up lost time will be charged at the exhibitors / contractors own expense.
Meeting rooms are not permitted at as limited ventilation, this means that small enclosed meeting rooms are not practical at this time.
Exhibitors are permitted to have open meeting space that is partially screened to give some level of privacy. The exhibitor’s COVID-19 H&S Documentation should demonstrate sanitisation between uses.
Organisers Rights to Change Stand and Floorplan Layout
In the interests of the Exhibition as a whole, it may be necessary to remove or alter anything in - or forming part of - any stand. If we feel this action must be taken, this would have to be at the expense of the Exhibitor concerned.
The exhibition floorplan is subject to change at the discretion of the organisers. Please contact the organisers to obtain the latest version of the exhibition floorplan.
For those exhibitors providing their own flooring you may appoint a flooring contractor of your choice. if you require platform floors and additional floor coverings these can be ordered through GES.
Tel: +44 (0) 2476 380 180
For all platforms that exceed 13mm, a ramp should be incorporated into this for accessibility onto the stand.
Banners and/or signage are not permitted to be rigged higher than 6m (from the top of banner/signage). No custom rigging is permitted at IGTM 2021.
All rigging is subject to the Organisers approval.
Risk Assessment & Method Statement
All space only stands, or shell scheme stands with construction are required to submit a full risk assessment and method statement for the design, construction and arrangement of their stand with both documents being submitted along with stand plans.
All Health & Safety documentation must demonstrate additional COVID-19 measures that have been implemented for the build, open period, and breakdown e.g. staff welfare, venitlation, enhanced cleaning.
- Working Safely During the COVID-19 Outbreak Guidance
- Risk Assessment Guidance
- Risk Assessment Template
- Method Statement Guidance
- Method Statement Template
For further information, please contact the Operations Team.
Exhibitiors are also required to have a risk assessment for any stand activities taking place on their stand during show open and may also be required to produce a method statement for certain activites at the organisers discretion. These do not need to be submitted to the organisers unless requested, but a copy of these documents must be available onsite should they be required.
Signage and graphics are not permitted to overlook other stands where there is a dividing wall. Where illuminated fascia boards are used on stands, the lighting of them must be of sufficient power to light the fascia board only, and must not cause any spill of light onto neighbouring stands. No flashing lights will be permitted. We reserve the right to disconnect the electrical supply to any illuminated fascia which, in our opinion, is causing a nuisance to any other Exhibitor.
Drinks receptions for 2021 are not permitted. Social distancing is difficult to manage and these activities require visitors to take their masks off for a period of time which is advised against.
Vehicles for Display
If you are intending to have a vehicle (including Mobile Exhibition Units, Caravans or Trailers) on your stand, please confirm the details in writing to the Organisers so that written approval can be given.
Depending on the type, age, and use of the vehicle, you will be required to confirm a number of details and which may also require a separate risk assessment detailing how the risk of bringing and displaying a vehicle in the hall is controlled.
Venue & Local Authority Regulations
All work must be carried out in compliance with the regulations of the Venue and Local Authority. If an exhibitor erects a stand which does not conform fully and in all respects to the requirements of the organiser, Venue and Local Authorities, the organisers reserve the right to alter, demolish or reconstruct the stand at the exhibitors expense and to make it conform to the regulations and requirements. Local Authority decisions are final.
Work Equipment & Tools
Exhibitors and contractors have duties under the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations (PUWER) to ensure that all tools are fit for purpose and safe to use. All dangerous moving parts such as circular saws must be guarded with controls to prevent unauthorised use. The use of battery powered tools is strongly encouraged to reduce trailing cables and risk of electrical hazards. Power tools are to take power from the 110v centre tapped earths provided and not from cleaner’s sockets which are 240v. Those using mains powered tools must ensure that cables are not trailed across aisles. All portable electrical equipment must be subject to a suitable portable equipment testing regime.
In light of COVID-19 it is recomended that where possible, work equipment, tools and workstations are not shared between workers. Where this is not possible then equipment, tools and workstations should be cleaned after use.
During the coronavirus pandemic, businesses may have found it difficult to carry out their legal duty thoroughly examine and test equipment. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is therefore adopting a phased and proportionate approach to resuming proactive regulatory intervention in checking compliance with statutory requirements. As an exhibitor or contractor it is your duty to understand there requirements. Further information on this can be found here.
Working at Height
Working at Height is a high risk activity and close attention will be taken on working practices during the build and dismantling of stands. Where possible, working at height should be avoided and if unavoidable, should use work equipment or other measures to minimise the distance and consequences of a fall should one occur. Working at height is to be in accordance with LOLER and the Working at Heights Regulations. As such, all working at height is subject to risk assessment.
- All rigging is to be carried out by the official Rigging Contractor.
- All working platforms are to have a guardrail, mid rail and toe board. Tools are to be kept on lanyards so far as is reasonably practicable.
- Static and mobile access working platforms must be fit for purpose (see Working Platforms)
- A Live Edge Working Policy will be enforced for the construction and dismantling phases where live edges are present.
- Separate risk assessments are required for working on a live edge (before rails are in place). In such cases fall arrest equipment must always be used.
- Operatives working at height other than on a static working platform designed for that purpose (e.g. Scaffold) must be clipped on.
- Operatives working at height must have suitable head protection e.g. bump caps.
- Ground access to areas in the vicinity must be controlled to prevent persons accidentally walking directly under high works. Ground workers in the vicinity must not work directly under high works and wear suitable head protection e.g. hard hats.
All Mobile Elevated Work Platforms (MEWPS) must comply with LOLER and have had a Thorough Inspection (TI) in the previous 6 months. All working platforms are to have a guardrail, mid rail and toe board. Mobile access towers must be correctly constructed. Mobile access towers must be fit for purpose. Outriggers are to be used correctly with the correct height to width ratio (3.5 x shortest base width indoors and 3 x shortest base width outdoors). Mobile access towers may not be moved whilst in use and wheels must be locked off. Ladders must be footed or tied off and used in accordance with Construction (Health Safety and Welfare) Regulations. The use of domestic ladders and steps is strictly forbidden. All of the above are a summarised guide. For full details on any particular aspect, you must seek professional advice for instance look on the HSE website www.hse.gov.uk or feel free to seek advice from the Operations Team.