Natural Flood Management

Organisation: Defra
Location: National
Type: Deliver

About the 2017 open competition

Following the 2016 Autumn Statement, Defra announced £15 million of government funding for natural flood management schemes across England.

The Environment Agency, together with Risk Management Authorities, Natural England and Forestry Commission, identified a number of projects at a catchment or coastal zone scale, and following consultation with the Flood Minister, have allocated funding to 24 projects. This programme can be found here. Please note that allocations and benefit information may change as the projects develop.

£1m of funding was also set aside for an 'open competition' for community projects, which was launched in March 2017.

These projects will provide an opportunity to evaluate the effectiveness of natural flood management, add to our evidence base and help to develop innovative solutions for the future by:

  • reducing flood risk, or coastal erosion risk, to homes
  • improving habitats and increasing biodiversity
  • contributing to research and developing NFM techniques and interventions
  • supporting and developing partnership working with and between communities

The community project proposals were evaluated in three stages:

  1. Catchment Partnerships and Environment Agency teams worked togeather to ensure that flood risk and environmental outcomes are realistic, using their local knowledge and expertise. They made sure that project proposals were consistent with local plans (e.g. Flood Risk Management Plans or River Basin Management Plans) and met the allocation criteria outlined above.Their priority proposals were then submitted to a National Panel.
  2. The area priority proposals were evaluated by a National Panel. The panel included representatives from the Regional Flood Committee, Environment Agency, Natural England, Forestry Commission and Defra. The National Panel reviewed proposals, and assessed them with a mixture of objective and qualitative assessment. They then prioritised the list for funding.
  3. The Floods Minister reviewed the prioritised list and made a decision on the successful projects for the competision.

A list of the successful 34 projects can be found here. Please note that allocations and benefit information may change as the projects develop.

A map of the locations for all both the Catchment Scale and Community NFM programmes can be found here.

Who to contact for further information

Further information please contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



The Catchment-Based Approach website is designed to showcase the work of catchment partnerships aross England and Wales and to encourage the sharing and adoption of best practice in stakeholder-led catchment managment planning, delivery and evaluation.


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