Taking out a wall and building regs...

Hi All,
We've finally found a place in Edinburgh, a colony upper in Leith, and moved in on Friday. We've started small, but I had some questions for the group about a possible future plan...
We have (what is to become) a dining room that is 'L' shaped because the stairs to the loft conversion occupy some of its original boundary. The door to the main hall (and the stairs to the loft conversion) is at one end, a door to the kitchen leads off at the other (the doors are in different planes but face the same way and are on the same side). The wall that runs between the dining room and the stairs is a thin stud wall, erected when the stairs were put in. The wall between the kitchen and the dining room is the original partition wall (and is not load bearing).
We would definitely like to take out the wall between kitchen and dining-room, to form a single space. We'd also like to consider removing the wall between the dining room and the stairs, making a single space between main hall and dining room. I suspect that the latter might, though, breach building regs with respect to fire protection beteen kitchen and stairs. (The door between hall and dining room has a closer on it, but does no appear to be a fire door; the door between kitchen and dining room is not in any way fire-protected).
How can I find out what the building regs are? I've never done this sort of thing before (taking out a wall) - what do you think I need to consider? Any usefull hints and tips?
Thanks in advance for help - Adam...
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From the chaotic regions of the Cryptosphere, adam snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Adam) wrote on 18 Aug 2003 05:21:42 -0700:

AFAIK, you suspect right. In England or Wales, I'd be sure, but I don't know enough of the Scottish Regs to be definite, but I expect it to be broadly similar.

The Scottish Building Regulations are at http://www.scotland.gov.uk/build_regs/, or ask at your local Council.
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From the chaotic regions of the Cryptosphere, adam snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Adam) wrote on 19 Aug 2003 05:45:21 -0700:

No; if a loft is converted, then the stairs have to be enclosed and lead either to a final exit or to two separate exits. Any existing doors can remain, but must be made self-closing. Any new doors have to be fire resisting. See http://www.bathnes.gov.uk/buildingcontrol/LoftConversions.htm.
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Hugo Nebula
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Is this the correct URL? Doesn't seem to go anywhere...
Colin Interested
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Congratulations Adam! We looked at a couple of colonies in Leith too (Parkvale Place and Rosevale Place) and they're great buildings. One of the biggest type of colonies in Edinburgh, with a lot of useable floor space upstairs (and a loft, unlike our new abbeyhill colony which has the bedrooms in the loft). Sounds quite a large flat actually with the loft conversion. Must've missed that one, would have liked to have seen it!
Completely unrelated to your question (sorry), wife and I will be looking for some period features for our new place (reclaimed mantle-pieces, that sort of thing), so is there anything you want me to keep an eye out for?
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It's actually the Lochend Road colonies, although they're almost identical (without the bay windows). We were very lucky - got to know the owners of a place we put in an offer on. We missed out by miles, but they put us in touch with their neighbour who was interested in selling. She had a price in mind, we offered it within 24hrs and it was never advertised...

Thanks for the offer, but not at the moment, no. We are restricting ourselves to cheap decoration at the moment...
Cheers - Adam...
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knew they were there! Are they a similar construction to the Leith Links ones, or are they Edin Co-op ones?
Leigh
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-8<- snip ->8-

Hi Leigh,
Edin Co-op? They are pretty much identical to the Links colonies, except that they radiate off a central road and, as I mentioned, don't have the bay windows. I think the deeds for ours said it was built in 1880...
Cheers - Adam...
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http://www.bbc.co.uk/dna/h2g2/alabaster/A624656
A little light history. Colonies built by the Edinburgh Co-operative Building Company. "The most well known of the colonies is the Stockbridge colony, named by the company as Glenogle Park. This is the best known of the colonies. The company also built on ten other sites, Hermitage Park, Restalrig Park, Abbeyhill, Hawthornbank, Ferry Road, Barnton Terrace, Saughtonhall, Dalry, North Merchiston Park, and Shaftesburgh Park. These were situated on sites around the city. "
When we were looking to buy one of the Leith Links colonies, we we told that they were built by a different company than the ones that built the Stockbridge ones, however I'm not so sure.
Leigh
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