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Flooding and Historic Buildings

Our guidance is aimed at those who live in, own, manage, or provide advice on historic buildings that are threatened by flooding. The guidance includes advice on preventative measures, as well as on how to inspect, conserve and repair historic buildings after flooding.

We know the risk of flooding is likely to increase due to a changing climate and the effects of increased development.

Around 400,000 homes and 75,000 businesses in England are in areas where there is a significant risk of river or coastal flooding on an annual basis. Even more properties are at risk from ground, surface water or sewer flooding.

Many of these buildings were built before 1919 and are therefore likely to be of historic interest. They are not only at risk from flooding but also from the potential damage of recovery work and repairs using inappropriate materials.

Flooding and Historic Buildings

Flooding and Historic Buildings

Published 30 April 2015

This guidance is designed to assist those who live in, own or manage historic buildings that are threatened by flooding. Advice is provided on preventative measures as well as on the inspection, conservation and repair of historic buildings after flooding.

Historic buildings need careful attention

Although most historic buildings are very durable and relatively resistant to flooding compared with much modern construction, they can still suffer substantial damage.

Older buildings behave differently to modern ones and as a consequence need much more careful attention after flooding. They are often built with more permeable materials like timber, lime mortars and plasters and soft bricks. These will absorb water and so need to be able to dry slowly.

Repair works need to be considered in relation to how the building is constructed and the materials used. One solution does not fit all.

Please follow this link for more advice on flood risk and your home.

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