Henry Taunt's 1890 photo of flooding in Oxford
Henry Taunt's 1890 photo of flooding in Oxford © Historic England Archive
Henry Taunt's 1890 photo of flooding in Oxford © Historic England Archive

Flooding and Older Homes

Many older homes are in areas where there is a significant chance of river or coastal flooding. Even more are at risk from surface-water, groundwater or sewer flooding. Older buildings can be damaged after flooding by unsuitable drying out methods and  repair works, and sometimes historic materials and fittings are thrown away.

See our advice on understanding flood risks for your home, preparing for floods, dealing with flooding; and sorting out flood damage:

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.

Learn more

Understanding flood risk
It is important to understand the type and extent of flood risk to your home as flooding can come from a variety of sources.

Being prepared for flooding
Good and effective building and garden maintenance can help reduce make your home more flood resistant.

Making your home flood resistant and resilient
If your home is in a flood risk area or has been flooded in the past, there are measures you could consider to help reduce the risk of water entering your home or reduce the amount of damage.

After a flood
Good practice advice on how to sort out flood damage and minimise damage to the historic materials and fittings.

Historic England held a webinar in December 2018 to discuss flooding and the historic environment. Flooding has been identified as one of the principal risks for the UK associated with our changing climate. Past years have seen devastating flooding over large areas of the country and an estimated one in six properties in England are estimated to be in areas at risk of flooding. Flood water affects our historic environment and can cause harm to heritage assets, however if looked after our traditional buildings may be far more able to cope than you might think.

View the 2018 flooding webinar. For the best experience, please use the Google Chrome browser or download Adobe Connect

How to treat and store objects after an emergency includes quick reference sheets on conservation treatments for salvaged books, ceramic and glass, furniture, metal objects, leather objects, paintings, paper, photographs, plastics, and textiles.

Ready for Rain Project

You can now follow a real-life property renovation to make a sandstone house ‘ready for rain’.

Cumbria Action for Sustainability are refurbishing a terraced house in Appleby to make it resilient to extreme weather, including flooding.

Find out more
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