Applicants and developers should be aware that since spring 2015, for all ‘major’ developments (10 or more dwellings, buildings of more than 1000sqm or development sites over 1 hectare), there is a legal requirement to incorporate SUDS drainage proposals into their planning applications including rural locations. These systems are seeking to avoid the loss of life and physical damage such as that caused by the 2007 UK floods when high levels of rainwater were channelled through traditional drainage systems and they were overwhelmed. SUDS measures such as ponds, reed beds, porous roads and swales allow for absorption and slower channelling of rainwater.
Developers are encouraged to incorporate SUDS for all developments where possible. There is online advice on SUDS design from the Flood Management Unit of North Yorkshire County Council.
Developers should ensure that written details of the future maintenance of the SUDS scheme for the post construction period are included with the application as this will play an important consideration regarding the acceptability of the design.