Be part of the solution

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.

More related community actions

Young family being rescued by the fire service after the River Derwent burst it’s banks in the village of Old Malton in North Yorkshire in northeast England. 27th November 2012.