Update December 2019

A Consultation Report providing a summary of the feedback received is now available from the Summary of Results section below.

The revised policy, EqIA and consultation feedback was presented for consideration to the Environment and Transportation Cabinet Committee on 29 November. The Policy Statement will be adopted by the Cabinet Member for Planning, Highways, Transport and Waste in the coming weeks and will be available shortly. 

This consultation has now closed.

Kent County Council (KCC) is the Lead Local Flood Authority (LLFA) for Kent under the Flood and Water Management Act 2010. As Lead Local Flood Authority, KCC has a strategic overview of local flooding. Local flooding is defined by the Act as flooding which is caused by:

  • Surface water,
  • Groundwater, and
  • Ordinary Watercourses

As LLFA, KCC has a number of powers and duties for the management of local flood risk in the county. These powers and duties include the duty to publish reports of investigations into flooding. The Act does not set specific threshold for publishing a report under Section 19, it allows LLFAs to determine the criteria that requires one.

The current policy for publishing reports of flood events sets the threshold for an investigation at one property internally flooded. Our experience of exercising this power is that a formal report of the flood event is often not necessary or useful for small floods.

Producing the report is time consuming and resource intensive, which can delay the delivery of actions to mitigate future floods. The evidence for the report must be compiled from a number of sources and written into a report which needs to be consulted on with the parties referenced in it. This process can take several months, typically nine to twelve months from the flood to publishing the report, sometimes longer.

For smaller flood events, the formal report is not necessary, nor does it lead to a different outcome. The report itself does not provide KCC any powers to require risk management authorities to undertake works, it is only a public statement of the circumstances of the flood event. Formal, public reports of flood investigations are often not wanted by the victims of the flooding either, simple statements of the issues are usually all they require.

Reports of flood investigations remain valuable for flood events where a public statement of the flood event is useful. This includes occasions where several properties have been flooded, where there is no recent memory of flooding and where the flooding is complex and a public report is useful for explaining the causes.

Proposed Policy
KCC proposes to investigate events that flooded residential properties internally or that disrupted local services, where no other body is investigating or planning to investigate the flooding, but we propose that not all of these flood events should be followed by a published report.

KCC officers will continue to liaise with the subjects of the flooding and report to them the findings of the investigation, though not necessarily through a published report.

KCC proposes to increase the threshold for publishing reports of flood investigations so that they are used when they add value. The proposed policy for publishing reports of flooding is set out in the box below:

The consultation will run from 19 August until 30 September.


  • Opened
    19 Aug 2019 at 10:00
  • Closed
    30 Sep 2019 at 23:59
  • Response Published
    04 Dec 2019


Consulting Organisation Type
  • Kent County Council
Consulting Organisation Name Kent County Council
District / Borough areas affected by the consultation
  • Ashford
  • Canterbury
  • Dartford
  • Dover
  • Gravesham
  • Maidstone
  • Sevenoaks
  • Shepway
  • Swale
  • Thanet
  • Tonbridge & Malling
  • Tunbridge Wells
Consultation Topic
  • General interest
  • Environment and countryside
Consultation Methods
  • Online survey / questionnaire / forms
  • Other survey / questionnaire / forms
Contact Details

Land Drainage Policy Consultation
Kent County Council
Environment, Planning and Enforcement,
1st Floor, Invicta House
County Hall,
Kent, ME14 1XX

Email: flood@kent.gov.uk
Please add ‘Land Drainage Policy Consultation’ as the subject.