Take flood action

Living With Water (Hull)
Flooding is the UK’s most serious natural hazard with one in six homes in the UK at risk. Only a third of people living in properties at risk of flooding are aware of that risk, and almost two thirds don’t believe it will happen to them. And yet, when floods occur, they can blight lives and livelihoods for years.

Effective communication is vital. We know that taking flood action will save up to 10 times the cost of doing nothing, so what can we do?
An increasing number of councils and their communities are looking together at Natural Flood Management, moving away from traditional, artificial flood defence techniques, to mimicking nature in slowing and storing floodwater. Creating wetlands, planting hedges and trees, restoring rivers, storing more water upstream (sometimes with the help of beavers) all create a natural solution to the issue, while also providing enhanced green spaces for local people to enjoy and creating a new habitat for wildlife.

The River Wye and Lugg Natural Flood Management project is using such means to reduce the risk and impact of flooding in Herefordshire communities. Led by Herefordshire Council, it's a partnership of communities, the Environment Agency, local flood action groups, parish councils and landowners in seven river catchment areas.

The city of Hull, situated in a natural bowl making it prone to flooding by tides, river and rain, has created the Living With Water Partnership, to address flood risks in a sustainable way that will provide resilience for businesses and communities for years to come.

You can form a flood action group in your community, working with key agencies to scope and manage your flood risk, create a community flood plan, and look at how to develop a community flood scheme.
Flood rescue Flood rescue
Start something new…

A great place to look for everything you need to set up your flood action group and reduce the increasing risks to health and home is The Flood Hub.

Interested in nature-based solutions? Check out more initiatives about land use, food & agriculture and biodiversity & nature.

… or join an existing community project:

Tackling flooding can be a specialist job often not suitable for volunteer involvement. However, many of the Wildlife Trusts around the UK are carrying out all sorts of habitat-focused projects, such as tree planting and meadow creation, which will help to soak up flood water further upstream from towns and cities in a natural way. The Wildlife Trusts always have lots of interesting and fun habitat management projects on the go which depend upon volunteers to make them happen. Why not contact your local trust and get involved in creating places which may not only help reduce flooding but will also create invaluable places for wildlife?

Every county in England plus Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have a local wildlife trust. Find out which is yours.

Don’t worry, you don’t have to be an expert in flooding or sustainability: a whole range of skills is needed to guarantee the success of projects like these and it’ll also be possible to learn as you go.

Other related community actions: Plant green infrastructure, Plant trees

What do we mean by community action?
23 community actions