Stand Build Regulations
- Build Height Limits
- Ceilings on Stands
- Complex Structures
- Compressed Gas
- COVID-19 H&S Documentation
- Dividing Walls
- Doors & Vision Panels
- Double Deck Stands
- Early / Late Working
- Electrical Installations & Testing
- Emergency Exits & Direction of Escape
- Enclosed Stands / Walling in Open Sides
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 venue technical regulations can be downloaded here.
It is the exhibitors responsibility to remove all barriers to service and make their stand accessible to wheelchair users. Whatever the content of the stand is it needs to be accessible to all. 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. Please note the following when designing your stand:
- Stands with platforms that exceed 13mm should incorporate a ramp into their stand design.
- The ramp must fall withing the perimeter of the stand and not into the surrounding gangways
- Ramps must be designed in conformity with DIN 18024 or DIN 18040-1 with max. 6% gradient / incline.
- If a stand is a double-decker, then it is probably not practical to offer lifts. Therefore please ensure that any services offered on the uppder deck can be brought downstairs 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.
Build Height Limits
In certain parts of the venue, there are additional build height restrictions. It is the exhibitor's responsibility to check if their stand is affected. Please contact the Operations Team for a detailed stand plot of your location.
The height limit for stand fitting, including cladding of columns is 6m from the floor level, however there are height restrictions in certain areas of the halls. The minimum construction height is 2.5m.
Double Deck or two- storey stands must be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org with full working drawings, along with structural calculations, no later than Wednesday, 22 March 2023 for approval. For more information, please read the Double Deck section of the stand build regulations.
It is not permitted to obstruct access to permanently installed electrical junction boxes and other technical equipment.
Ceilings on Stands
The tops of all stands must in all cases be open, in order not to impair protection by the sprinkler system.
Definition of open ceilings:
The individual square metre must not be more than 50% under cover. Example ways in which this can be achieved:
- Through the use of textiles suitable for use with sprinkler systems with a mesh size of at least 2x4mm or 3x3mm.
- Through the use of lattice-type coverings with an opening size of at least 2x4mm or 3x3mm.
The textile cover must be fitted horizontally in a single layer. The textile covers should be taut and should not sag.
Flame-retardant materials in accordance with the DIN 4102/B1 norm must be used as a minimum.
A test certificate verifying the properties of the material and its suitability for use with sprinkler systems must be submitted to Ops Squad along with your stand plan submission before the start of assembly. This certificate must also be kept at the booth.
Closed ceilings may be permitted on certain conditions in the case of multi-storey structures, exhibits or blackout blinds. These cases must be approved by the organisers. The exhibitor shall bear the expense of the special permit.
A sprinkler system must be installed if more than 30m² of the booth surface is covered over in the halls. The calculation also includes the part of the booth covered by stairs. It must be connected to the hall sprinkler system and comply with the standards of the German Insurance Association (VdS). The sprinkler system at the booth must meet the relevant technical standards and may be installed by any professional firm. This can be arranged with the HMC Venue Customer Services team.
Sprinkler systems must be ordered by 9th May 2023.
It is not possible to install a sprinkler system anywhere in the CCH building therefore the covered areas must be below 30m².
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.
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
- Any structure, regardless of its height, which requires structural calculations
- Anything deemed by the organiser to be a complex structure
All complex structures, must submit technical drawings and structural calculations electronically to Ops Squad Stand Plan Team with all other stand plan submission documents.
Late submission of complex stand details or the failure to supply sufficient detail, including structural calculations may result in permission to build 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.
The use of liquefied fuel gases in compressed gas cylinders is prohibited in the buildings.
An exception can be made for compressed gas cylinders holding a maximum of 400ml or the use of compressed gas cylinders holding other gases (e.g. balloon gas, oxygen). Both require express premission from the Operations Team and HMC.
The relevant accident prevention regulations stipulate that precautions must be put in place to prevent compressed gas cylinders from being knocked, from falling over, from unauthorised access and from heating up.
If you require the use of compressed air or gasses, contact the Operations Team at least six weeks prior to the show.
COVID-19 H&S Documentation
Every stand exhibitor and their contractors must ensure that they have identified any risks with working onsite and what control measures they will put in place to protect both their workers and others from coronavirus e.g. cleaning & hygiene, staff procedures etc. These measures should be clearly displayed in your H&S Documentation. Every exhibitor is responsible for making sensible adjustments to their space and onsite activities to ensure we maintain a safe environment across the show for everyone who is onsite during build, show open and breakdown.
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
Demonstrations on stands during the event must be safe and without risks to health and safety and where necessary covered by a risk assessment.
Please click here for details of what demonstrations are permitted at the event this year.
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 is 6m.
Doors & Vision Panels
Where doors are present on your stand they must follow the below guidance;
- Emergency exit doors must open outwards in the direction of escape.
- Doors must not open directly on to a gangway.
- Doors must be recessed where they open on to public circulation areas, e.g. they must not open directly on to a gangway.
- Doors must be hinged i.e. swing doors. Revolving doors, doors with coded locks or sliding locks are not permitted on escape routes
- 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.
Double Deck Stands
Double Deck Stands will still be permitted as long as the following regulations are adhered to:
- If a Double Deck stand has not already been contracted with your Account Manager you will need to apply for permission to build a Double Deck stand. To apply for permission you must send a written request to the Operations Team by 5pm (BST) Wednesday, 8 March 2023. After this date permission to build a Double Deck stand will not be granted.
- Following your written application, the deadline to submit complete documentation is 5pm (BST) Wednesday, 22 March 2023. The stand submissions should be uploaded to the online Stand Check System.
- Stand submissions must include the following forms;
- Show Double Deck Stand Regulations can be downloaded here.
- It is your stand designer and/ or builders’ responsibility to read, understand and comply fully with the venue technical regulations. A copy of the venue technical regulations can be downloaded by clicking here.
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.
Early / Late Working
Early access and late work can be requested via the link below and is subject to prior approval from the Operations Team. Early access must be requested prior to;
WTCE 2023 - Early Access & Late Working Request Form
All extra working must be pre-approved by the Operations Team. The cost for access on Thursday, 1 June (0800-2000) is €665.00 per stand. Additional hours are charged at €124.00 per hour if confirmed and paid for before Wednesday, 3 May, or €243.00 per hour after this date including on site. Early access requests will close on 17 May, any requests after this date will not be accepted. Pre-event late working requests will also close on 17 May. After this date all late working requests will be taken onsite only and will need to be paid for via credit card.
If you have any questions regarding early access or late work please contact the Operations Team.
Electrical Installations & Testing
Exhibitors and contractors must comply with section 6.3 of the HMC Technical Regulations.
Electrical installations from the installation channel to the handover point to the exhibitor/contractor must be carried out exclusively by HMC and its official contractors. All electrical orders, including mains power supplies must be ordered through the HMC Online Service Centre.
Emergency Exits & Direction of Escape
- Booths with a surface area of up to 100 m² need an exit with a clear width of at least 0.90 m.
- Booths with a surface area of over 100 m² need at least two exits, each with a clear width of 0.90 m.
- Booths with a surface area of more than 200 - 399 m² need two exits, each with a clear width of 1.20 m.
- Booths with a surface area of 400 m² or above are subject to the regulations for emergency exit and escape route widths laid down in the regulations governing venues and meeting places in Hamburg (Versammlungsstättenverordnung Hamburg – VStättVO), as currently amended at the applicable time. The escape routes are to be marked in accordance with ASR A 1.3.
- Separate rooms ons tands must have a line of sight in the direction of escape and a clear view of the nearest emergency exit and escape route.
- Structures are not allowed which obstruct the line of sight in the direction of escape and the clear view of the nearest emergency exit and escape route or the access route to it.
Please see Double Deck Stand section for specific details regarding Double Deck emergency exits and escape routes.
Enclosed Stands / Walling in Open Sides
The inclusion of large enclosed areas within a stand can only be permitted with the organiser’s prior written permission.
Long runs of walling along open perimeters of stands are not permitted. Just 50% of any open side is permitted to be a solid wall (e.g. a 10m perimeter can have a maximum of 5m solid walling). If long section of walling are unavoidable and they exceed 50% of any open side they must be set back 1m from the open perimeter of the site.
Walling on open sides should be kept to a minimum but if unavoidable the outside of the wall must have suitable graphics and/ or have material texture changes, windows, plasma screens or any other elements to provide suitable relief to the neighbouring exhibition stands. Please remember that any additions to the walling, such as screens or lights must be kept within the perimeter of the stand and not overhang into the surrounding gangway.
We introduced this industry wide regulation to ensure all of our Exhibitors are given equal opportunity for footfall and visibility. If you have any questions about the above, please contact the Operations Team.
For details regarding enclosing stands with ceilings, refere to the Ceiling section.
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 technical 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.
Combustible waste must be safely disposed of and boxes and packaging must not be stored on the stand.
The venue will be providing fire patrols during all phases of the event. First aid firefighting equipment is provided in the halls by the venue and additional fire extinguishers required on stands must be supplied by the exhibitor.
We generally advise all exhibitors to keep suitable extinguishing agents on hand to fight fires. The provision of extinguishing equipment is mandatory, however, in any of the following cases:
- Use of naked flames
- Booth area >20m²
- Multi-storey structures (at least one per stairway)
- Use of stoves or electric heaters
- Other actions constituting a fire hazard
- Compulsory on the instructions of HMC
If fire extinguishers are kept at the trade fair booth, they should be water extinguishers complying with EN 3 or DIN 14406 standard. Carbon dioxide extinguishers (min. 5 kg) must be used in food preparation areas and equipment rooms, and a wet chemical extinguisher (min. 6 l) must be provided if a deep fat fryer is used, duly conforming to requirements set out in EN 3 or DIN 14406.
The equipment inspection intervals must be observed. The staff manning the booth must be briefed on the location and operation of the equipment and the relevant extinguishing agents. The location must be identified with a sign reading "Feuerlöschgerät" (fire extinguisher) in accordance with DIN 4844.
Floor Loading Restrictions
Please note the following floor loading limits below:
- Halls A1 & A4 - 5000kg/m2
If you are intending to exhibit heavy items, please notify the Operations Team and provide details of the exhibit.
If you are constructing a double deck stand, please check the Venue Technical Regulations.
Open space sites are not carpeted - exhibitors must provide their own floor covering.
Exhibitors with adjoining blocks of stands will not be permitted to place their own carpet in the gangways unless prior permission is given in writing by the organisers.
Nothing may be structurally attached to the floor of the Exhibition premises.
Carpet may only be fixed to the venue floor with approved carpet tape. All carpet tape must be removed and any charges for the removal of carpet tape left on the floor at the end of breakdown will be passed direct to exhibitors.
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 specific risk 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 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.
Permits must be request 2 weeks prior to the start of build but contacting the Operations Team.
Kitchens and food service areas must also comply with all existing catering and technical regulations from the venue.
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.
See the Badges & Passes section for full information on what is permitted this year.
Whilst enclosed meeting rooms are permitted we still recommend that you consider creating open spaces instead to help increase ventilation.
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.
There are pillars within the exhibition hall and it is the Exhibitors responsibility for checking the location and size of pillars on their stands. Please contact the Operations Team to request a detailed stand plot.
The Organiser will take care to indicate the exact dimensions of such elements as accurately as possible on the plans submitted to the Exhibitors, however, the Organiser cannot be held responsible for any slight differences, which may exist between the dimensions indicated and the real dimensions of the site.
If you have booked a space only stand with a view to using your own 'Pop-Up' stand the following criteria must be met in full to maintain the overall look of the event.
- A rear and any dividing walls must be built which is self-supported and full length.
- Diving walls must be a minimum of 2.5m high.
- The area booked must be carpeted to the dimensions of the space.
- A stand number must be displayed to ensure identification for the visitors.
- Your company name must be clearly visible
- The Pop-Up must not infringe any neighbouring stand and be within the height restrictions for your stand location.
Stand Plans must be submitted for approval via the stand plan submission system and will not be approved unless the stand complies with the above. If your stand does not comply with the above, you will be asked order a Shell Scheme stand.
Stands with a platform that exceeds 13mm in height should incorporate a ramp for disable access. See the Accessibility section for further information.
Areas accessible to general public that are on platforms of 200mm and over, need to be surrounded by railings. These must have a height of at least 1.10m and have at least a top, middle and bottom railing provided.
Evidence of structural soundness must be provided for platforms on request by the organiser.
Depending on usage, floor load must in accordance with DIN1055, page 3, table 1, be designed for at least 2.0 kN/sq m.
Platforms accessible by one step only are not to be higher than 20mm. Ladders, stairs and catwalks must conform to the accident prevention regulations.
Railings in areas accessible to trade fair visitors must be 1.10 m high in accordance with VStÃ¤ttV HH 2003. They must also withstand a horizontal load of 1 KN/m (DIN 1055-3). The construction of the railings must prevent them from being climbed over.
Stands with a platform that exceeds 13mm in height should incorporate a ramp for disable access. See the Accessibility section for further information.
Suspension of lightweight ceilings, advertising signs, banners, light fittings or lighting bars/gantries from the hall ceiling is possible using the fittings provided. This suspension facility is not available in all areas of the halls. Please contact the Uberkopft with details of the rigging required for confirmation of height restrictions on your stand area.
Please note that the Hamburg Messe no longer allows ground supported rigging. For more information, please view the venue's Rigging Technical Bulletin.
To order any rigging for your stand please contact HMC - UEBERKOPF GmbH directly.
Rigged items including the height must be included in stand plans when submitted.
The following limits are applicable in all cases, where technically possible:
- Stand construction: +6 m above upper edge of floor
- Advertising structures/banners: +8 m above upper edge of floor
- Suspended lighting: +9 m above upper edge of floor
Complex Rigging or Suspended Loads/Structures refer to rigged, custom-built/bespoke structures including items that have been constructed from non-modular materials, e.g. wooden structures and exhibits.
An onsite complex rigging sign-off is required for all stands with custom-built or bespoke suspended structures. Onsite all complex rigging or ‘suspended loads’ must be inspected by an Independent Structural Engineer before being hoisted or connected to any rigging points. It is the stand contractor’s responsibility to inform the onsite Health & Safety team when they are ready for the structure to be inspected.
All complex rigging must follow the following guidance;
- Bolts must be used on all joints and connections. Screws are not acceptable for joining members together.
- Rated, closed lifting eyes only are to be used; they must be integrated into the design and suitably bolted through the structure.
- Lifting points should be clearly identified and be suitable for the lifting operation.
- Materials used in construction must be of a suitable nature and quality for their intended use. See Fire Safety Regulations.
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.
- 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.
Stand Number Panel
A stand number panel must be displayed on every open side of the stand to aid visitor navigation. This is the responsibility of the Stand Space/Exhibitors.
Storage rooms are permitted on stands and if possible should not have a solid ceiling. If a solid ceiling is unavoidable due to an upper deck then consideration should be given to the ventilation and the capacity restricted to one person at a time.
Please note that only daily requirements can be stored in the hall. Packaging materials (easy flammable) has to be stored outside the hall.
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 Operations Team 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 seperate risk assessment detailing how the risk of bringing and displaying a vehicle in the hall is controlled. Vehicles with a combustable engine must have almost empty tanks.
As vehicles are enclosed spaces, consideration should be given to ventilation. They should remain as open as possible, keeping any doors or windows open to allow sufficient airflow. Exhibitors must also ensure sanitisation between uses if necessary.
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.
Please click here to view the venue regulations.
If you are intending to have a water feature on your stand please confirm the details in writing to the Organisers so that written approval can be given.
Water features that create mists and sprays such as fountains create the risk of the spread of Legionella bacteria in the air that can cause Legionnaire’s disease. Any such feature is a special risk requiring a separate risk assessment detailing how the risk is controlled through water treatment and testing.
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.
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.
For further advice on working at height safety, please contact the Operations Team.
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.