Guidance for architects, and developers on flood risk, drainage and phase 1 contaminated land reports is summarised below with links to the key summary documents.
Herefordshire is a predominantly rural county which lies along the Welsh borders.
Herefordshire Council’s contaminated land strategy is available to view online, though this does not go into detail on the phases a developer should follow during their planning application.
If we are to follow their own strategy, the process of risk assessment includes the development of a conceptual model of the land. This is developed through a staged approach of preliminary risk assessment, desk-based study; a site visit and walkover; a generic quantitative risk assessment and other stages of more detailed quantitative risk assessment if required. This is an iterative process which will be continued until such time as sufficient information is available to demonstrate whether or not the land meets the statutory definition of contaminated land.
GeoSmart recommend that developers seek specific advice from the council prior to any formal planning application if land contamination is likely to be an issue. GeoSmart can then assist with such a desk-based study, as mentioned above, if required.
If we are to follow their own strategy, a walkover will most likely be required for a desk-based study, though GeoSmart recommend that developers seek specific advice from the council.
Fluvial flood risk
The majority of fluvial flood risk in Herefordshire is associated with the main rivers that flow through the country, with the most extensive floodplains attributable to the River Teme, River Lugg, River Arrow, River Wye, River Frome, River Dore, River Leadon and Worm Brook.
Ordinary watercourses that are under the jurisdiction of Herefordshire Council also pose significant flood risk in many areas of Herefordshire. There are too many to list but those that tend to pose the greatest flood risk to properties in Herefordshire include the Yazor Brook and Widemarsh Brook, Red Brook, Back Brook, Brimfield Brook, Mill Brook, Dulas Brook, Humber Brook, Holly Brook, Wellington Brook, Little Lugg, , Rudhall Brook, Garren Brook, Willersley Brook, Folly Brook Millcroft Brook, Tan Brook, Wriggle Brook, Cherry Brook, Luston Brook, Preston Brook, Cradley Brook and Millhalf Brook.
The fluvial flood extents in Herefordshire are mostly contained within currently rural areas, reflecting the largely rural nature of the county. The most significant towns and villages that are indicated to be at notable risk of fluvial flooding from main rivers and ordinary watercourses include Hereford, Leominster, Ross-on-Wye, Kington, Leintwardine and Bromyard, as well as the villages of Hampton Bishop, Eardisland, Eardisley, Orleton, Brimfield, Mordiford, Fownhope, Withington Marsh, Steen’s Bridge, Five Bridges (near Bishops Frome), Hope under Dinmore, Yarkhill, How Caple, Ledbury, Little Hereford, Llangarron, Luston, Much Marcle, Ewyas Harold, Whitney on Wye and Wyson.
Other villages that are indicated to be at flood risk or are known to have experienced flooding in the past include Wellington, Letton, Whitchurch, Credenhill, Bosbury, Bodenham, Pembridge, Peterchurch, Bill Mills near Pontshill, Dorstone, Yarpole, Kingsland, Presteigne, Prior’s Court, and Stretton Sugwas.
Surface water flood risk
The most significant towns and villages that are indicated to be at notable risk of flooding from surface water sources include Hereford, Leominster, Ross-on-Wye, Kington, and Bromyard. Other villages that are indicated to be at flood risk or are known to have experienced flooding in the past include Stretton Sugwas, Tarrington, Lea, Hope Under Dinmore, Withington, Risbury, Much Birch, Yarpole, Welsh Newton, Sutton St. Nicholas, Wigmore, Richard’s Castle, Stoke Prior, Westfield, Bishop’s Frome, Colwall, Kingsland, Kingstone, Madley, Donnington, and Llangrove and Knapton Green.
Following the enactment of the Flood and Water Management Act in 2010 and the Written Ministerial Statement published on the 18th December 2014, Lead Local Flood Authorities (LLFAs) will be a Statutory Consultees on major1 planning applications as of the 15th April 2015. The designated LLFA is the Council. In brief, the LLFA will assess the proposed drainage designs for a development and provide comment to the Local Planning Authority.
The following is a list of the documents and information which the LLFA expect the applicant to submit as part of their planning application to the LPA. This information is what the LLFA will be using to assess the application against the above policies and standards in line with its Statutory Consultee duty.
Please see Ealing’s Approach to SuDS Assessments document below for a flow chart of the steps and timescales relevant when dealing with major planning applications.
Records of groundwater flooding in Herefordshire are limited. However, this is likely to be because groundwater flooding is often perceived as surface water flooding as is therefore not accurately recorded, rather than groundwater flooding not being a potentially significant source of flood risk. The large number of natural springs located throughout Herefordshire and that form many of the country’s ordinary watercourses indicates that groundwater emergence can be common.
Historic records of groundwater flooding held by the Environment Agency indicate occurrences near Clehonger, Newtown, Tarrington, Much Marcle, Westfield, Cradley and Stifford’s Bridge. The Council are aware of springs which pose a risk to Colwall (Evendine), Wetmore, Lea, Yarkhill and Peterchurch.