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Storm Water Drainage (Local Authorities)

Volume 587: debated on Monday 10 November 2014

19. What recent guidance he has given local authorities on ensuring adequate storm water drainage in residential areas. [Official Report, 18 November 2014, Vol. 588, c. 1-2MC.] (905970)

There are strict tests in national planning policy to protect people and property from flooding, including from storm water. We made clear in planning guidance that we published in March that where those tests are not met, new development should not be allowed.

Quite right. In the past year we have seen businesses and homes damaged by floods in Bradford on Avon, Corsham, Melksham, and villages, including Holt. What role does the Minister expect local authorities such as Wiltshire council to play in preventing flood damage with sufficient storm water drainage?

We obviously expect local authorities to deal with such issues through their local plan. Some 94 local authorities act as the lead local flood authority and are expected to have in place a flood risk management strategy. Of those 94, 36 local authorities have not yet published or consulted on their strategy and, according to my information, Wiltshire is one of them. Perhaps as a diligent constituency MP, my hon. Friend will join me in encouraging Wiltshire council to come forward with that plan.