If new development and changes in land use are not properly controlled and managed they could increase surface water runoff during rainfall events and lead to an increase in flood risk.

The Lead Local Flood Authority is a Statutory Consultee for major planning applications and will scrutinise applications in terms of surface water flood risk and sustainable drainage.

When making planning decisions the Local Planning Authority and Lead Local Flood Authority work together to review development proposals to ensure that inappropriate new developments are prevented or directed away from high risk flood areas, and that appropriate drainage is to be provided. This includes a review of whether suitable consideration has been given to climate change.

In line with National Planning Policy, the Lead Local Flood Authority encourages a sustainable approach to surface water drainage.

We would encourage all developers to consider drainage and flood risk at an early stage and suggest that developers consider the Council’s Pre-application Advice service.

Any applications for development should consider the following guidance and legislation.

Surface water drainage guidance for development

West of England Sustainable Drainage Developer Guide (West of England Partnership, 2015)

This guidance document sets out the requirements for the design and approval of Sustainable Drainage Systems (SuDS). This guide is structured around the non-statutory Technical Standards for Sustainable Drainage Systems in conjunction with the National Planning Policy Framework and Planning Practice Guidance.

Bath & North East Somerset Council’s Surface Water Management Plan 

This study includes Infiltration Potential Maps that can provide a valuable desk-top indication of the viability of infiltration-based drainage systems.

Non-statutory technical standards for sustainable drainage systems (Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs, 2015)

Planning Practice Guidance (Department for Communities and Local Government)

Environment Agency Local Flood Risk Standing Advice for Bath & North East Somerset (Environment Agency, 2014)

Bath & North East Somerset Council’s Strategic Flood Risk Assessment

Surface water drainage policies and legislation for development

National Planning Policy Framework (Paragraph 103)

Sustainable drainage systems: Written statement (HCWS161) 18 December 2014

Bath & North East Somerset Council emerging Placemaking Plan: Policy SU1

Building Regulations Part H – Drainage and Waste Disposal (HM Government, 2010)

Bath & North East Somerset Council’s Core Strategy. Policy CP5 Flood Risk Management and CP7 Green Infrastructure

Waterproofing basements


 Many residents have chosen to convert their old coal cellars, vaults and basements into a more functional space. We are occasionally asked about leaks into these structures. This leaflet describes responsibilities relating to this issue

Waterproofing Basements (Pdf)

Related links

Bath & North East Somerset Council's planning pages

Historic Vaults in Bath

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