Current Flood Risk Policy
The National Planning Policy Framework (March 2012) requires planning applications to be accompanied by a Flood Risk Assessment if the development is located within the Extreme Flood Outline, commonly defined as Flood Zone 2 (medium flood risk) or Flood Zone 3 (high flood risk) or if the development site is over 1 ha (typically between 30-50 houses).
The National Planning Policy Framework and parts of the Planning Policy 25 (Technical Guide) for Development and Flood Risk detail what should be included in the Flood Risk Assessment. Crucially a Flood Risk Assessment should only be completed by qualified individuals who are chartered and are full members of recognised institutions such as ICE, CIWEM etc. Louisa Inch is a Chartered Environmentalist and a full Member of CIWEM satisfying this criteria.
We have a fully standardised Flood Risk Assessment format which is proven to be acceptable to both the Local Authorities and the Environment Agency. This looks at the risk of flooding from all sources and not just from tidal or fluvial, the likelihood, the severity, the likely depth of flooding, the duration of flooding and assesses any impact on the emergency services.
Case Study 1
Premier Water Solutions were appointed to undertake a Flood Risk Assessment for a redevelopment of an existing stone barn located within Flood Zone 3. The original planning application did not include a Flood Risk Assessment and the Environment Agency raised an objection on flood risk grounds and the application was consequently refused. We undertook a great deal of time liaising with the Environment Agency and addressing their concerns, which included changing the layout of the proposal, identifying a safe egress route and incorporating flood mitigation measures on the ground floor. The application was eventually passed in Nov 2012.
Case Study 2
Premier Water Solutions were appointed to undertake a Flood Risk Assessment to convert an existing mill from office use into 8 residential flats. Again the Environment Agency had concerns about whether the building would flood, but all concerns were addressed by us. This included the client having to structurally maintain and clear the vegetation in the mill race, incorporating living accommodation on the ground floor and flood proofing the building in the eventuality of a flood. This development was awarded planning permission in 2011.