Chloe Smith
MP for Norwich North

Flooding in Sprowston East

Author: Chloe Smith, Updated: 01 December 2023 09:03

Since visiting constituents affected by recent Anglian Water flooding and sewage issues particularly in the areas of Greenborough Road, Hammond Close and Way, I wanted to update you on action that I have taken.
I made enquiries about  water companies, in this case Anglian Water, and the extent of their involvement in large-scale housing developments and planning applications. 
At present, water companies are not statutory consultees on planning application - which means that water companies are not legally compelled to provide their views or respond to planning applications when a local authority is considering new or large scale planning developments.
You can read my written parliamentary question to the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities below:
Q: To ask the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, if he will take steps to make water companies statutory consultees in medium and large scale planning applications.   

A: The Government has made a commitment, as part of its reform package under the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill (now the Act) to consult on whether or not we should make water companies statutory consultees on certain planning applications, and if so, how best to do this. It will be important that water companies engage local planning authorities on their applications at the right time so they can input effectively and not slow down the application process.

Whilst water companies are statutory consultation bodies in the preparation of area local plans, which set the strategic framework for development in an area, they are not currently statutory consultees for planning applications and decisions.
Flooding is a harrowing experience for residents or businesses, and I am pleased to see that the Government is taking action on this point. 
In a growing city like Norwich, it is vital that key stakeholders such as Anglian Water input into planning decisions to ensure that appropriate infrastructure is considered, sewage capacity assessed and flood risks mitigated. 
 A risk of flooding be it from sewage or rain/river water should be a vital component of considering whether any development is suitable and sustainable, and I will be following this matter closely on behalf of my constituents.
If any Norwich North constituent continues to be affected by the recent sewage flooding, please do contact me on tel: 01603 414756 or email:
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