New £1 million flood competition to protect more communities
David McQuade - April 3, 2017

Environment Secretary announces new £1 million natural flood management competition, part of the government’s drive to reduce flooding by using a range of innovative techniques.

A new ground-breaking competition will allow flood defence projects around the country to apply for a share of £1 million to help protect even more homes and businesses, Environment Secretary Andrea Leadsom announced today, Monday April 3 2017.

This government funded competition is the first of its kind and will be open to innovative projects that plan to use landscape features such as ponds, banks, meanders, channels, and trees to store, drain or slow flood water.

Natural flood management already forms an important part of the government’s flood strategy and funding these new projects builds on £14m already committed to similar schemes across the country.

The Environment Secretary announced the new competition in Leicester, where a natural flood management scheme is already successfully in place reconnecting the floodplain with the river.

This scheme has not only reduced the flood risk to 1,200 properties, it has transformed public spaces along the river, with improved seating areas and cycle paths for the local community to enjoy. A total of 100 trees and 7,000 shrubs have been planted and wildlife such as grey heron and little egret are now regularly seen around the area.

The new natural flood management competition will give small-scale natural flood management projects around the country the opportunity to apply for funding, so they too can achieve similar results.

The deadline for competition entries is 19 May 2017 and the successful projects are expected to be announced by the end of June 2017.

Environment Secretary Andrea Leadsom said:

“I am delighted to offer more support for local communities looking to employ natural flood management measures to better protect their homes and businesses.

We now carefully look at flood risk across an entire catchment area from a river’s source to the sea – to make sure we have in place the best tailored mix of natural as well as concrete, engineered defences to better protect communities.”