South Downs named in top flood risk areas for 2024

Following extreme weather and flooding across the UK, Thomson Environmental Consultants has predicted the top ten most vulnerable UK areas using historic flood alert data provided by the Environment Agency.
One of the beautiful views of Sussex.One of the beautiful views of Sussex.
One of the beautiful views of Sussex.

Since the start of January, Solent and South Downs have experienced numerous flood warnings and vehicle and property damage following the dangerous weather conditions caused by Storm Henk.

With this in mind, Thomson Environmental Consultants delved into Environment Agency data to predict the UK areas facing the biggest risk of flooding in 2024 based on the locations with the most flood alerts and warnings over the last five years.

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Thomson Environmental Consultants is one of the UK’s leading independent environmental consultancies supporting a range of businesses to comply with environmental legislation and helping them work towards the best outcome possible to benefit both them and the natural world.

The study revealed Solent and South Downs are in the top five most at-risk areas for flooding, with 1,789 flood warnings over the past five years. The worst affected area in Solent and South Downs is Eastern Yar (117), as the land holds the longest river on the Isle of Wight, which is prone to overflowing following periods of heavy rainfall. Other at-risk areas include Climping Seafront (79), Cuckmere River (58), Western Rother (56) and River Blackwater (53).

According to the new research, the top ten flood-risk areas in England are West Midlands (4107), Wessex (3397), Yorkshire (2608), Solent and South Downs (1789), Essex, Norfolk and Suffolk (1608), Kent S London and E Sussex (1456), East Midlands (1256), Cumbria (1195), Devon (1074) and Thames (1050).

Emily Trill, who is the Senior Hydrological Consultant at Thomson Environmental Consultants, spoke the importance of flood mitigation and how local authorities and property developers can significantly lower the impact of future flood events.

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She said: “Investing in critical infrastructure, regulating development in flood-prone areas, and fostering community awareness and preparedness can significantly reduce the impact of future flood events.

"However, collaboration among authorities, agencies, and environmental consultancies is vital to creating resilient floodplain management strategies that safeguard communities and natural defences against the growing risks posed by climate change.”