Chard Flooding Update
The Lead Specialist – Strategic Planning introduced the report which updated members on the contents of Section 19 report produced by the Local Lead Flood Authority at Somerset County Council following the extreme weather event in and around Chard on 28th June 2021. She advised that a multi-agency meeting was being set up to look in more detail at the recommendations and the findings of the report. She highlighted that the Lead Local Flood Authority at Somerset County Council were looking for feedback on the draft Section 19 report and asked members to email any comments to LLFA@somerset.gov.uk.
During the discussion, various comments were made by members which included the following:
· The Chard Area Resilience Group (CARG) had done an immense amount of work since the flooding events last year and should be congratulated on this. It was noted that they were prepared to work constructively with the Lead Local Flood Authority and this should be taken on board.
· It was important to feedback on the report as evidence based facts were key.
· It was acknowledged in the report that mitigation measures could be undertaken but this would not prevent a similar event happening in the future.
· Riparian owners not being aware of their obligations was a key issue that needed to be addressed.
· The way forward was for local action by local people.
· The direct affects that people have suffered needed to be looked at by the multi- agency team to try and prevent it happening again as some people had still not moved back to their homes.
· Substantial works were required to help with the mitigation in Chard and the surrounding district.
· There was a need to rectify issues with regular drainage maintenance by the Highway Authority.
· There were issues with developers taking responsibility for repair and maintenance for drainage systems.
· What was the likelihood of the recommendations being adopted and backed up by government and law?
· It was noted that there was a great pulling together of services and all those organisations involved needed to be prepared for future events with mitigation measures put in place to try and stop damage in the future.
Councillor Sarah Dyke, the lead member at Somerset County Council for Environment and Climate Change noted members’ comments and confirmed that she would take the issues raised forward. She commented that climate change mitigation was a priority for the new Somerset County Council administration and with the introduction of a new portfolio there would be much more focus. She would ensure that the recommendations in the Section 19 report would be taken forward and acknowledged that it was vital for a multi-agency approach to be taken.
At the conclusion of the item, members agreed the recommendations of the report.
That the Committee noted and provided comment upon the draft Section 19 investigation report into the flooding in and around the Chard area during June 2021. In particular, members noted:-
a.The recommendations for improving the communication flow between the public and multi-agencies in an event such as this to avoid duplication of effort as set out on page 34;
b.The work that is required on the culverts, gullies and other assets as set out on page 35;
c.The future local planning policy standards for flood risk on page 36 will need to be factored in to future Strategic Flood Risk Assessments and the Somerset-wide Local Plan and;
d. That South Somerset District Council will continue to provide support to the LLFA regarding on-going investigations and any associated actions not mentioned above.
That the public are encouraged to comment on the draft Section 19 report directly to LLFA@somerset.gov.uk by 15th July 2022.
- Area West Chard Flooding Update Report v2, item 11. PDF 305 KB
- S19 Chard 28 June draft 5.0, item 11. PDF 5 MB