The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and associated Planning Practice Guidance for Flood Risk and Coastal Change, emphasise the active role Local Planning Authorities (LPAs) should take to ensure that flood risk is understood and managed effectively and sustainably throughout all stages of the planning process.
All LPAs are required to prepare a Strategic Flood Risk Assessment (SFRA) in order to assess the risk from flooding from all sources and as the basis for applying the 'sequential' and exceptions' tests to potential development sites identified for inclusion in the Local Plan and to inform strategic land use planning. Merton Council has undertaken a joint SFRA with the boroughs of Croydon, Sutton and Wandsworth.
The Level 1 SFRA (December 2015) assesses the flood risk in the borough using the most up to date readily available flood risk information for all sources of flooding and provides the information to enable each borough to apply the sequential test. The report contains planning policy recommendations and a site assessment database for the purpose of undertaking the 'sequential test on potential development sites.
The Level 2 SFRA (January 2017) provides the necessary information to justify the potential development of sites through satisfaction of the exception test and will provide information and recommendations on the suitability of SuDS and site specific flood risk mitigation measures. The report will be used to inform development management decisions. Therefore it is essential that developers have consideration to the SFRA when submitting site specific flood risk assessments (FRAs) and drainage strategies to support planning applications.
Both the Level 1 and Level 2 reports have now been finalised in liaison with key partner risk management organisations including the Environment Agency, Thames Water Utilities Ltd, Network Rail and Transport for London.
You can download the current Level 1 and Level 2 SFRA reports and appendices below.