Flood risk areas must be protected

CONCERN has been raised by a Morpeth councillor that the Government is not doing enough to prevent development in flood risk areas.

Authorities across the country are being asked to take part in a consultation for the Department for Communities and Local Government’s draft National Planning Policy Framework.

On managing the risk of flooding, the document states: “When determining planning applications, local planning authorities should ensure flood risk is not increased elsewhere and only consider development in flood risk areas appropriate where informed by a site-specific flood risk assessment.”

But at a meeting of Morpeth Town Council’s Planning and Transport Committee, Coun David Parker said: “When reading through this I expected that the Government would be looking to beef up its policies in order to virtually rule out any future development in flood risk areas.

“However, I’m unsure whether these particular proposals will achieve this and I’m worried that we may not even see a reduction in the number of developments.”

The committee will discuss the document in more detail at a future meeting so it can put together a response before the closing date of October 17.