BRE IP15/03 – Research & Guidelines2018-08-03T14:53:43+00:00

BRE IP15/03 Research & Guidelines

Specification Guidelines

BRE has published an information paper (ref. IP15/03) entitled “Proprietary nosings for non-domestic stairs”. This paper provides guidance to designers and building managers on the best way to assess the types of proprietary nosings that should be provided on non-domestic stairs.

Gradus has combined the key findings of this report with in-house research and development, and as a result has developed the XT range of profiles.

Detailed below is a overview and summary of the key findings in the BRE IP15/03 information paper.


The study considered the dynamics of pedestrian stair use. Previous studies have shown that 80% of slips on stairs are likely to occur when users are descending the stairs. This usually occurs as a result of an overstep (i.e. when a substantial portion of the foot overhangs the tread). Therefore as the going (tread width) becomes narrower the likelihood of a slip incident becomes greater. Where the going is less than 300mm the risk of slip is increased. Most non-domestic stairs have a going of between 250mm and 280mm. The risk of slip is further increased if the tread surface is smooth, becomes wet or there is a lack of clear colour contrast at the step edge.

Diagram shows how a typical overstep situation can occur when the going is less than 300mm.



The application of a proprietary nosing may reduce the risk of slipping against the factors highlighted above. The proprietary nosing should incorporate a slip-resistant material that should extend to the point at which it meets the vertical face to minimise the risk of slip in descent. Proprietary nosings should all offer a colour contrast to clearly highlight the step edge.

Gradus recommendation

The XT range of stair nosings offers a new edge in safety for stairs and has been developed to take into account the latest guidance contained in the BRE information paper IP15/03, BS 8300-2:2018 and in The Building Regulations 2010 – Approved Document M.

  1. Extended insert design ensures maximum safety underfoot
  2. Locking mechanism secures insert in place
  3. Recess to accommodate floorcovering ensures secure fit of profile to step
  4. Backing points help to hold floorcovering in place

Extracts from BRE Information Paper IP15/03, Proprietary nosings for non-domestic stairs, copyright BRE, reproduced by permission. IP15/03 is available from IHS BRE Press, Bracknell RG12 8FB,