View of open fields - Eastern Urban Development Extension
Open Quote

The hedgerows of West Manley Lane are afforded protection under the Hedgerow Regulations 1997... this importance relates to the botanical diversity of woody species and the association of protected and / or rare species of animals

Devon Wildlife Consultants Report 2009

Open Quote

Tiverton Grand Canal and its environs with its walking and cycling leisure opportunities is of great importance giving pleasure to locals and tourists as well as providing biodiversity and economic benefits for the local community

Devon Wildlife Consultants Report 2009

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Planners to oversee sustainable urban drainage, government confirms 18 Dec 2014

By WMLCG - posted Dec 19th 2014 at 3:45PM


Planners to oversee sustainable urban drainage, government confirms

18 December 2014 by John Geoghegan , 2 comments

The government has confirmed that it will push ahead with plans to give local planning authorities responsibility for approving and maintaining eco-friendly sustainable urban drainage systems (SuDS), despite concerns raised by more than two-thirds of consultation respondents about the move.

SuDS: plan to increase implementation

Following the 2007 floods, the Flood and Water Management Act 2010 said that SuDS would become compulsory on all new developments from April this year.

New SuDS Approval Bodies (SABs) would be responsible for their approval, adoption and maintenance, the Act said.

However, last summer, the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) proposed in a joint consultation that, instead, the conventional planning system would be responsible for SUDS approval and maintenance.

In a statement yesterday, Pickles confirmed that both local plan-makers and decision-makers should "ensure that [SuDS] are put in place" for all residential developments of 10 or more homes and major commercial schemes, "unless demonstrated to be inappropriate".

The changes would take effect from 6 April 2015, Pickles added.

According to the DCLG and Defra consultation response, "71 per cent of respondents expressed the view that the proposed revision to planning policy, as set out in the consultation ... would not deliver sustainable drainage which would be maintained".

Most concerns focused on "uncertainty about the way in which [SuDS] would be maintained and the lack of technical expertise and capacity currently held by local planning authorities to approve and inspect [them]".

In response, the government said that, to access the necessary technical expertise, authorities "should consult the relevant lead local flood authority on the management of surface water".

Through the use of planning conditions or obligations, councils should make sure there are "clear arrangements in place for ongoing maintenance over the lifetime of the development", the reponse said.

The government further said it would "produce clear and straightforward planning practice guidance" on SuDS.

The DCLG and Defra consultation response can be found here.

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