Loads Road FRA

In November 2015 Phoenix Adam Limited was appointed by Chartered Building Surveyor Robin Barnett to undertake a Flood Risk Assessment to support a full planning application for a single dwelling and detached double garage on land in Holymoorside.



Above:  Proposed Development Site

A Flood Risk Assessment (FRA) is an assessment of the risk of flooding from all flooding mechanisms, the identification of flood mitigation measures and should provide advice on actions to be taken before and during a flood. In England and Wales an FRA is to be submitted alongside a planning application in areas known to be at medium or high risk, Zone 2 or 3.

The sources of water which would put a property or site at risk include:

  • Groundwater
  • Surface Water
  • Artificial Water
  • Rivers, streams or water courses
  • Sewers and drains
  • Coastal water

Flooding can also occur due to a combination of sources of flooding, such as high groundwater and an inadequate surface water drainage system.


Above:  Flood zones taken from the EA website

To gain a full understanding of the site, the topography of the area and the potential sources of flood water, a site visit was undertaken in which valuable information about the site was given from the site residents. From the site visit it was particularly noted about the proximity of the Loads Brook, a tributary from the River Hipper, bordering the north of the development site. A greater understanding of the flood water routing was gained from the topography of the nearby roads, which slope towards and passed the site. The potential flooding sources were categorises as low, medium and high, the outcomes are listed below. Sea/ tidal influence and artificial water were not considered a site hazard.

  • Ground Water                  – Low
  • Surface Water                 – Medium
  • Piped Drainage                – Medium
  • River &Watercourses      – Medium

Due to the proximity to a water source, the development site is shown on the EA flood map to border Flood Zone 2 (light blue) and Flood Zone 3 (dark blue), therefore the Flood Risk Assessment carried out was a Zone 3, the worst case scenario.


For a Zone 3 assessment to be passed a sequential test and an exception test need to be passed. The sequential test is performed by encouraging that the development is directed away from areas of risk to Flood Zone 1 wherever possible. There are 2 requirements for the Exception Test for those of high risk, the first is that the development provides wider sustainability benefits to the community that outweigh flood risk will be demonstrated in the full Planning Application by the client.

The report produced by Phoenix Adam demonstrated the second requirement of Exception Test, that the site will be safe in the event of flooding. This was demonstrated by the calculation of finished floor levels of the property from the site ground levels provided by the surveyor.

The report was submitted to the client within the deadline and we look forward to hearing of the conclusion to the planning application.


Above: Loads Brook behind the development site.



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