• Initial sector-specific health and safety audit
  • Tailored policy and risk assessments, built around critical concerns surrounding safety in builders merchants 
  • Competent person role (required under the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations)
  • Assistance with accident investigations, including reporting under RIDDOR
  • Liaison with the HSE, conducted by our own ex-enforcement officers
  • Bespoke staff handbooks covering health and safety in builders merchants
  • Safety Cloud – user-friendly, web-based health and safety software
  • Access to a wide range of instructor-led and online training courses
  • Six-monthly safety audits and online reports
  • Free telephone advice from our sector experts


Our consultants push your approach beyond simple box-ticking, helping you transform standards and create a compliance-based culture. We start with a bespoke, business-wide safety audit based on your specific needs, as well as common issues of safety in builders merchants, then provide the hands-on expertise to ensure you meet legal requirements, and much more.

Our Safety Cloud software provides online access to every aspect of builders merchants safety management, empowering employees to work collaboratively in satisfying – and exceeding – compliance targets. Skills are constantly updated with e-learning modules and face-to-face training tailored to every job title, from head office employees to forklift operators and yard foremen:

- IOSH Builders Merchants Yard and Warehouse Safety Course

- Key Person Training for Builders Merchants course, aimed at branch managers

- Powerline safety, workplace transport, banksman, work at height and manual handling e-learning modules

Discover how smarter H&S management could benefit your business - submit your details, and we'll be in touch in 24h to discuss your compliance concerns.


  • Workplace noise assessments

Exposure to high levels of noise is key concern of builders merchants safety and can give rise to tinnitus and even permanent hearing loss if left unchecked. The Control of Noise at Work Regulations (2005) place an obligation on employers to perform a suitable and sufficient assessment of the risk to employees, and to reduce the risk to as low as is reasonably practicable. Our experienced consultants use the latest technology to accurately measure the level of noise present in your workplace through both personal dose monitoring and static area measurements. 

Generating a ‘workplace noise assessment’, we then advise on which areas or processes are creating the greatest risk to your employees and practical ways to reduce noise levels.


  •  Asbestos Surveys

The Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 require employers to assess and manage the risk of exposure to asbestos. In reality, this means ensuring you know firstly if your building contains any asbestos and secondly managing potential exposure. Failure to adequately manage the risks associated with asbestos often leads to heavy prosecution fines.

How do we help you?

We undertake a survey (called a management survey) to establish the facts. This will involve sampling any materials suspected to contain asbestos and results can be obtained same day if required. The next step is pulling together all of the data to compile a survey, which will include a site plan with asbestos register. Taking this a step further than other providers, we then work with you to produce a management plan to ensure you fully comply with regulations.

What about refurbishment or demolition?

If refurbishment or demolition is to be conducted, the area must be subject to a refurbishment and demolition survey. With an established track record of health and safety in builders merchants, we can often undertake this at short notice and rapidly turn around the required samples.


  • Workplace DSE Assessments

The Health and Safety (Display Screen Equipment) Regulations require an analysis of staff workstations to assess and reduce risk. Workstations must meet specified minimum standards. If a worker is suffering pain from poor workstation postural habits, injury or ill-health, disability or return to work from a long absence, a workstation assessment is strongly recommended as part of your builders merchants safety programme.

Our ergonomic assessors can conduct a seating analysis and workstation overview (typically known as a DSE assessment) for all office environments. Typically 30 minutes per individual with the worker at their workstation, these involve a case history, health and safety checklist, task analysis, postural analysis, environmental analysis, workstation adjustments, advice and completed display screen equipment risk assessment to ensure you are fully compliant with regulations.

  • Training

We offer both IOSH-approved Health and Safety training (IOSH Managing Safely, IOSH Working Safely and IOSH Builders Merchant Managers and Core Person training), First Aid at Work training and HABC Level 2 and Level 3 Food Hygiene accredited training courses.

We also offer tailor-made courses to suit you e.g. manual handling, work at height, asbestos awareness, fire warden etc.

Training courses can be held on your site or at a local training facility.

E-learning training is available via Safety Cloud and consists of a full range of sector-specific health and safety priority topics. Our e-learning platform can also offer client-specific bespoke training unique to your organisation.


  • Fire Risk Assessment

The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 makes business owners, and those responsible for business premises, ultimately accountable for conducting a fire risk assessment and making safe their places of work. As part of routine health and safety in business merchants, you need to appoint a ‘competent person’ to help if you don’t have the expertise or time to do the fire risk assessment yourself. Our consultants are qualified and experienced in conducting fire risk assessments across a variety of industries.

In brief, this process includes an assessment of:

- Emergency routes and exits

- Fire detection and warning systems

- Firefighting equipment

- Safe storage of dangerous substances

- An emergency fire evacuation plan

- The needs of vulnerable people, including the elderly, young children or those with disabilities

- Information provided to employees and other people on the premises

- Staff fire safety training

A fire risk assessment document and emergency plan will be produced, ensuring you fully comply with the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.


  • DSEAR Risk assessments

The Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmospheres Regulations 2002 (DSEAR) require employers to control the risks to safety from fire, explosions and substances corrosive to metals. A particular barrier to health and safety in builders merchants, ‘dangerous substances’ can be found in nearly all workplaces and include such things as solvents, paints, varnishes, flammable gases, such as liquid petroleum gas (LPG), dusts from machining and sanding operations, dusts from foodstuffs, pressurised gases and substances corrosive to metal.

Southalls will conduct a risk assessment to establish which dangerous substances are present and what hazards they present. We will then identify and classify areas of the workplace where explosive atmospheres may occur and what control measures are needed to remove or control the risk. 

We also provide training for staff to ensure employees are properly informed about and trained to control or deal with the risks from dangerous substances in the context of builders merchants safety.


  • Legionella Risk Assessment

Legionella causes Legionnaires’ Disease, a potentially fatal form of pneumonia. Failure to properly manage your water systems may expose your staff or customers to this risk.

As an employer or person in control of premises, you need to assess, prevent and control any risks of exposure to Legionella arising from your water systems. Compliant to the L8 approved code of practice, we will identify and assess the source of any risk of Legionella and produce a practical action plan to control the danger and strengthen your builders merchants safety procedures.



We chose Southalls based on recommendations from many NBG Members – not one bad comment received. Our experience of dealing with them has been excellent – Whatever has been promised/agreed has been strictly adhered to. 

PGR Builder & Timber Merchants

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