Apply for a new bespoke permit for flood risk activities

You must apply for a bespoke permit if you're working on or near a main river and the activities do not fit within any exemptions or exclusions.

Check if you need to apply for an environmental permit.

Apply for a bespoke permit

Your application will need to include as a minimum:

  • plans showing the location of your works
  • detailed drawings showing what you wish to do, along with any calculations
  • details of flood and environmental management measures

Other information may be required to support your application which will depend on the specifics of the proposed activity. Please contact us prior to submitting your application if you are unsure of what additional information may be needed.

Applications for temporary work will also need to include a method statement with details of how the work will be carried out and any environmental protection/mitigation measures that will be put in place


The amount you need to pay will vary depending on the type of activity and location.

Charges are categorised into 3 bands:

  • Low - £270
  • Medium - £360
  • High - £540

Some discounts may be available for multiple flood activities, and applications where we have already considered the flood risk activity proposal at the planning application stage.

Your charges are calculated when you submit your application form and we will arrange payment with you.

Please note:

  • charges are subject to revision from time to time
  • there is no VAT applied to the charges for your application

You will find further information in our charging Scheme.

After you apply

When we receive your application for a flood risk activity permit, we check that:

  • you have completed your application correctly
  • submitted the necessary supporting information
  • submitted the correct application fee

If anything is missing we will let you know.

When your application meets these requirements, your application form is deemed to be ‘duly made’.

Decision about your application

When making our decision we will consider whether your proposed works are likely to have an impact on flood risk, land drainage and the wider environment. We will also consider other legislation, for example, the Water Framework Directive and the Habitats Directive.

You should bear in mind that receiving permission does not confirm:

  • that your proposals are of sound design
  • that your proposals comply with other legislation, such as health and safety legislation
  • that you have permission to carry out works on land or rivers that you do not own

It can take up to 2 months to grant or refuse your permit. If it's more complex the decision may take up to 4 months.

Appealing a decision

If we refuse your permit we will write to you to provide reasons for our decision.

You can appeal against our decision if you think it has been:

  • withheld unreasonably
  • or if it has been granted with conditions you feel are inappropriate

Please contact us if you would like more information about the appeals process.

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