Flooding and flood risk management

SuDS and new development

Advice note for planning applications with SuDS

For specific, local, guidance on what to submit with a planning application about surface water management to us, see the surface water advice note (PDF). This was updated in December 2021, following the adoption of our Local Plan and changes to section 14 of the National Planning Policy Framework in July 2021.

About SuDS

We expect that all development will be sustainable and, where appropriate, will contribute to the creation of infrastructure and communities that are safe from flooding for their intended lifetime through the use of Sustainable Drainage Systems (SuDS).

SuDS mimic natural drainage processes to reduce the effect on the quality and quantity of run-off from a development, and provide amenity and biodiversity benefits. They use a sequence of techniques that together form a management train. As surface water flows through the system, flow velocity is controlled and pollutants are removed. More information on this can be found on the Susdrain website.

When considering SuDS as part of a major planning application, local planning authorities need to satisfy themselves that the minimum standard of operation is appropriate for SuDS, and ensure through the use of planning conditions that clear arrangements are in place for their ongoing maintenance over the lifetime of the development.

All major applications submitted to Central Bedfordshire Council must include a 'Surface Water Drainage Strategy', which will set out the appropriateness of SuDS to manage surface water run off and provision of maintenance for the lifetime of the development which they serve. Major applications which do not meet this requirement will not be made valid. Minor applications should demonstrate surface water drainage arrangements and should give priority to the use of SuDS.

The Lead Local Flood Authority is a statutory consultee to the planning application process and will use the following documents as a basis for providing advice to the Local Planning Authority:

Contact us

For further advice please see our flood advice for developers page.