Sustainable Drainage Systems (SuDS) mimic natural drainage patterns and seek to manage rainfall close to where it falls.

The benefits of SuDS include:

  • reducing the risk of flooding by slowing down surface water runoff and providing storage
  • reducing surface water pollution by treating runoff through natural processes
  • providing natural habitats for wildlife
  • providing areas of amenity

Examples of SuDS include:

How Sustainable Drainage Systems are designed

Early consideration of the movement of water is crucial to the success of SuDS and allows developers to maximise benefits.

If you are a developer, designer or consultant and want to know how to integrate SuDs into the master planning of small and large developments, our SuDS masterplanning document will complement guidance on SuDS design for different types of developments.

Our role in delivering SuDS

Lead local flood authorities were made a statutory consultee in respect of surface water for major development in 2015.

Through this process we advocate and audit the use of sustainable drainage systems for new developments in accordance with National Planning Policy Guidance and best practice industry guidance.

Statutory consultees have a duty to respond to statutory consultations within 21 days. Every year, performance reports are sent to the:

  • Ministry of Housing
  • communities
  • local government.

Download the local lead flood authority (LLAF) consultee reports:

Find out more

View our SuDS Masterplanning document

Find out more about flooding guidance, plans and policies