Image of houses flooded after the Severn burst its banks near Bewdley in Worcestershire

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Houses flooded after the River Severn burst its banks near Bewdley in Worcestershire © Paul Gendell

Being Prepared for Flooding

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

Things you can do:

Keep masonry pointing in good order and sealing gaps around pipes that penetrate the external walls.  Dry walls will be able to resist taking up water for longer and will be quicker to dry again afterwards.

  • Check any gutters, downpipes and drains regularly to make sure they are working properly.
  • Check neighbouring ditches and water courses for blockages, particularly after heavy rainfall.
  • Make sure external ground levels are as low as practicable and slope away from the building.
  • Remove extensive hard surfaces around a building as this restricts water absorption by the ground and increases run-off. Guidance is available from the Royal Horticultural Society on greening front gardens and using permeable paving as well as problems caused by waterlogging 
  • Prepare an emergency flood plan and flood kit. The National Flood Forum publication Ready for Flooding gives some ideas
  • Sign up for the government Flood Warning Service for free flood  alert messages
  • Make sure you have the correct insurance cover and whether you are adequately covered for repairs. Are there any special provisions for listed 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.

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