Agenda item

Report of the Head of Planning, Transportation and Environment (PTE/21/6), presenting the Local Flood Risk Management Strategy for Devon and Annual Action Plan, attached.


An Impact Assessment is also attached for the attention of Members at this meeting and can also be found on the Impact Assessment Webpages.


(Councillors Biederman, Dewhirst, Greenslade and Hannaford attended remotely in accordance with Standing Order 25(2) and the Local Authorities and Police and Crime Panels (Coronavirus) (Flexibility of Local Authority and Police and Crime Panel Meetings) (England and Wales) Regulations 2020 and spoke to this item).


The Cabinet considered the Report of the Head of Planning, Transportation and Environment (PTE/21/6), presenting the Local Flood Risk Management Strategy for Devon and Annual Action Plan, circulated prior to the meeting in accordance with regulation 7(4) of the Local Authorities (Executive Arrangements) (Meetings and Access to Information) (England) Regulations 2012.


The revised Devon Local Flood Risk Management Strategy covered the period 2021-2027 and the Report also highlighted the achievements in flood risk management over the past year and detailed the investment proposed for the next financial year through its Annual Action Plan.


Over the past year the Flood & Coastal Risk Management Team had been working on the revisions, the main purpose being to set out how flood risk would be managed in Devon, including organisations / RMAs and relevant responsibilities. However, it had to align with the National Strategy, which the Environment Agency had updated and published in July 2020. 


A draft version of the Local Strategy was released for public consultation in August 2020, the final version having been amended to take account of the key points arising from the consultation. A copy was attached at Appendix A and of the Report and could be viewed at: The necessary assessments of its environmental and equality considerations had been undertaken.


Despite a highly challenging year due to COVID-19, a full programme of flood improvement schemes had been successfully delivered, including a major scheme at Ivybridge protecting 76 properties, the second phase of flood attenuation in the Northbrook catchment in Exeter, Stokeinteignhead Property Flood Resilience measures which were supported by additional Highway drainage improvements and in Sidmouth (through the first of two planned phases of work to protect 100 properties). Further schemes at Beeson, Broadhempston, Chillington and Colaton Raleigh were currently being investigated and developed for delivery.


In August 2020, residents of Barnstaple suffered flooding to 118 residential and 46 commercial properties. In response, a Section 19 flood investigation report had been produced and the list of highest priority communities had been amended to include Barnstaple.


A more detailed and illustrated paper describing the Team’s achievements had been produced to support the Report and could be accessed at


The ambitious programme of delivery was set out in the draft Annual Action Plan for 2021/22, attached as Appendix B.


An Impact Assessment had been circulated with the agenda for the attention of Members at this meeting and could also be found on the Impact Assessment Webpages. The Cabinet noted that all flood risk management activity would be assessed and prioritised based on risk and would be equally available to all, subject to cost benefit justification and approval of funding.


As a summary and in line with the Flood and Water Management Act, the Council had to maintain a Local Strategy through its cyclical review and updating. The revised and updated Local Strategy aligned with the Environment Agency’s National Strategy. It highlighted the highest priority catchments that would be considered during the next 6-year period. With the risk of flooding high across the County and set to worsen with the effects of climate change it was essential that investment in flood risk management remained a priority.


The matter having been debated and the options and/or alternatives and other relevant factors (e.g. financial, sustainability (including carbon impact), risk management, equality and legal considerations and Public Health impact) set out in the Head of Service’s Report and/or referred to above having been considered:


it was MOVED by Councillor Croad, SECONDED by Councillor Hart, and




(a) that the updated Local Flood Risk Management Strategy for Devon, attached in Appendix A to the Report, be approved and adopted; and


(b) that the Annual Action Plan, attached in Appendix B of the Report, with the proposed investment in flood risk management in 2021/22, also be approved.


(NB: The Impact Assessment referred to above may be viewed alongside Minutes of this meeting and may also be available on the Impact Assessment Webpages).

Supporting documents: