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What are the Regulations for Wire Balustrades?

3 March, 2022

There are many different types of rope balustrade, and the regulations for each type can vary. Generally, the regulations will state that a wire balustrade must be able to withstand a certain amount of force, to prevent falls and injuries. That said, the overall strength of a wire balustrade is usually determined by the size and type of wire used, as well as the spacing between the wires. In some cases, a metal frame may also be required to provide extra support.


Research is critical

With regards to the current regulations, it's always important to check with your local council, as requirements will vary from one location to another. You also need to ensure any wire balustrade you install meets relevant safety standards. In the UK, these are set out in the Building Regulations (part K), which specify the dimensions and construction of guardrails and balustrades. That said, we can provide some guidance regarding an ideal height and thickness for residential projects.


  •        A guard or a balustrade must be fitted to an edge where there is a drop of more than 600mm.
  •        The height of the handrail must be a minimum of 900mm for all areas in internal residential applications.
  •          The height of the handrail must be a minimum of 900mm for stairs and ramps in external residential and commercial applications and a minimum of 1100mm for other areas (like balconies or floor edges).
  •         You should not be able to pass a 100mm sphere between any gaps of the wire balustrade.
  •         A minimum of 4mm diameter steel wire rope must be used for wire infill.


Can the wire run around corners?

Whilst it is possible (in some instances), we do not recommend running wire around large corners because it's difficult to maintain the necessary tension. It's better to start a new run at a corner junction because you will not compromise security or safety.


What is the best rope for the job?

We provide grade AISI 316 stainless steel rope and stainless steel cable, which complies with EN12385 and EN10264 standards, so you can be reassured of quality. One of the main advantages is its corrosion resistance, and AISI 316 stainless steel is the best you can buy, ensuring your cable balustrade will last for many years.


Is it possible to install a steel wire rope balustrade yourself?

You will find plenty of helpful information online, and with the right products, it's definitely possible to install a steel wire rope balustrade, however, it depends on your experience and confidence. In many cases, the key aspect of a balustrade is to provide optimum safety. Therefore, it's always best to consult with a professional installer so that you can meet all of the necessary safety standards.


Why buy your steel rope and balustrade fittings from Rope Services Direct?

We are the UK's leading supplier of rope balustrade fittings, and our products are manufactured to the highest possible standards. We also have a team of highly experienced professionals who can offer advice and support when it comes to selecting the right product for your needs. We specialize in galvanized steel and stainless steel rope and can custom make any assembly to your requirements, thanks to our own workshop and industrial pressing facilities. To learn more about us and how we can help you, please call 01384 78004.