Banister Height

April 2024
Anton White

Navigating the specifics of banister height can be a crucial aspect of designing your outdoor space, ensuring both safety and compliance with UK regulations.

At Ovaeda, with years of experience in crafting outdoor decking and accessories, we understand that the ideal banister height is 1100mm above the pitch line of your stairs or the floor of your landing.

This article aims to delve deeper into the importance of getting this measurement right, not just to meet safety standards but to enhance the usability and aesthetic appeal of your outdoor areas.

What this article covers:

How Tall Should a Banister Be?

In the UK, the magic number is 1100mm above the pitch line of your stairs for external banisters. This isn't just a number we've dreamt up; it's backed by the UK's building regulations and Document K to ensure your outdoor space isn't just stunning but safe too.

But why this range, you ask? Well, after putting it to the test, we've found that this height strikes the perfect balance no matter what types of banisters you're using. It's tall enough to provide sturdy support for adults and children alike, yet not so towering that it feels like a fortress wall.

How to Measure Height for a Banister

Measuring up for a banister isn't rocket science, but it does require a tad bit of precision. Here's how we recommend doing it:

  1. Identify The Pitch Line: This is a virtual line that runs along the top of your stair treads. It's where the toes of your feet hit as you climb.
  2. Measure Up: From this line, measure straight up to reach the desired height of your banister, keeping it to 1100mm.
  3. Consider The Handrail: The thickness of your handrail can affect the overall height. For instance, if you're installing a chunky handrail, you'll need to factor this into your measurements to ensure the top of the handrail sits within the regulatory height range.


In the grand scheme of decking and outdoor spaces, the banister might seem like a small detail. But as we've seen, getting the height right is crucial for safety, usability, and overall aesthetic.

Whether you're a DIY enthusiast or planning to bring in the pros, keeping these guidelines in mind will ensure your outdoor space is not only compliant with UK regulations but also a safe, stylish haven for all your outdoor moments.

Explore Ovaeda's range of premium decking and outdoor handrail solutions to elevate the safety and style of your outdoor space today.

Banister Height (FAQs)

Are banisters required for stairs?

Absolutely! In the UK, if your stairs are over a certain height, a banister isn't just recommended; it's a must for safety.

Do you need a banister on both sides of stairs?

It depends on the width of your stairs. For those narrower than 1m, a banister on one side might suffice. But for wider stairs, it's wise to have a banister on both sides.

staircase banister height

What are the requirements for staircase treads and risers?

The size and height of your treads and risers play a big part in stair safety. UK regulations specify a maximum and minimum for both, ensuring a comfortable, safe ascent and descent.

Is it illegal to not have a banister?

For stairs of a certain height and length, lacking a banister can indeed run afoul of UK building regulations, emphasising the importance of installing one.

Can I remove my banister?

Removing a banister can be a risky move, both in terms of safety and legality. If you're considering this, it's crucial to check the regulations and perhaps consult a professional.

How far apart should my brackets be?

The spacing of your banister brackets is key to ensuring it provides sturdy, reliable support. There's a recommended distance to strike the right balance between strength and aesthetics.

If you want to learn more, why not check out these articles below: