Lympstone Flood Resilience


Who we are and what we do

The Lympstone Flood Resilience Group (LFRG) is a working group of the Lympstone Parish Council, that engages positively with the relevant Flood Risk Management Authorities. Since our formation in 2017 our objective has been to develop a more coordinated and strategic approach to flood risk management in the village.

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How we respond to the flood risk today

Lympstone remains at risk from tidal, river, surface water and sewer flooding. Our estuary and inland flood warden teams monitor flood risks and take ‘first line of defence’ actions in flood events. These actions include the safe operation of the estuary flood gates, clearing blocked road gullies causing surface water flooding, and, where necessary, using sandbags and our water pump to protect properties.

In the last two years, we have worked closely with the Environment Agency to improve existing defences in the village. The flood retention wall on the east side of Underhill car park has been rebuilt and strengthened. The highway pooling on Chapel Road has been minimised by the installation of an automated pump and the adjacent Brook trash screen is now more effectively monitored by a telemetry linked webcam.

Staying Safe in a Flood

In the event of a flood, we must put people before property, co-operate with the emergency services if told to evacuate the home, and be prepared to act quickly to get to safety.

  • Gather essential items together either upstairs or in a high place – have torches, medication and waterproofs to hand 
  • Fill jugs and saucepans with clean water 
  • Move your family and pets upstairs or to a high place with a means of escape 
  • Turn off gas, electricity and water supplies when flood water is about to enter your home, if it is safe to do so 
  • Do not on any account touch sources of electricity when standing in flood water 
  • Keep listening to local radio for updates or call the Floodline on 0345 988 1188

Need a little more help?

If, for any reason, you are worried about protecting your property in a flood incident, feel vulnerable, or you have concerns for your own safety, please contact us. We would aim to provide priority attention. We will manage your personal information sensitively and in confidence. Our contact details are below in the ‘contact us’ section.

How to protect your property

Preparation is key. Find out if you are in an area at risk of flooding and Sign up for flood warnings by entering your postcode. You can choose to have the flood warnings sent to you by email, text or telephone.

Look into ways in which you can protect your property:

  • Flood boards: usually placed in vulnerable doorways, in pre-fitted channels
  • Sandbags or water filled bags. Put in place before a flood event.
  • Non return valves: can be installed to drains around the home to stop floodwater backing up. Also for installation in toilet pans to prevent foul water backing up.
  • Airbrick covers or self closing air bricks to prevent flood water entry

A comprehensive list of flood protection products and specialist fitting companies can be found here in the Blue Pages

You may be able to apply for a Property Flood Resilience Grant from Devon County Council to help with the costs of making your property more resilient. Details of the scheme, and the application process is here

And can you help us, and your community?

Managing our flood risk in Lympstone is a team effort, and there are several ways you can help:

  • If your land boundary is next to Wotton Brook, or one of the other watercourses in the village, you are a Riparian Owner. Please keep the banks clear of anything that could cause an obstruction and increase the flood risk, either on your land or downstream if it is washed away. A useful reference for Riparian Owners is on the website here: Owning a watercourse
  • If you see any activity that could cause water pollution or blockages which increase the risk of flooding, please report them immediately to Environment Agency’s incident hotline on 0800 80 70 60 (freephone, 24 hour response)
  • We are creating a comprehensive ‘Flood Hotspots’ map in the village; places that sometimes/often flood in prolonged wet weather; we hope to publish this soon, but in the meantime, please report to us any incidents of serious flooding or blocked drains. Photos and videos are always very helpful. Use the contact details in the ‘Contact us’ section below.
  • We have a great team of Flood Wardens, but it is a case of ‘many hands make light work’ and we always welcome new volunteers. It is not very time consuming, but it is an important community role, so if you would like to know more, or are interested in joining us, please get in touch with us via the ‘Contact us’ section below.

Our Partnership and Strategic work

We have built robust working relationships with the Environment Agency, Devon County Council, East Devon District Council, South West Water plc, West Country Rivers Trust, Lympstone and Woodbury Parish Councils, and local businesses. LFRG and our voluntary flood wardens work with and on behalf of you.

Our Lympstone Flood Risk Management Project takes a coordinated and strategic approach to the flood risk in the village. Following a start up period of consultation with the Environment Agency, a hydraulic survey of key watercourses in the catchment was undertaken. A computer model is now being developed which simulates the Wotton Brook and surface water flows in different weather, Estuary, tidal, and Climate Change conditions and over different periods of time. It also takes account of the catchment’s soil characteristics and the way the land is being used.

We are confident that the model will deliver a better understanding of the flood risk in the village and that, where needed, intervention measures may be identified for implementation.

Whilst the coronavirus pandemic has slowed the progress of the project, as the model and resilience opportunities mature we will be presenting them and consulting with the village. Our aim is to make Lympstone as flood resilient as possible!

Our local Risk Management Authorities, and contact information.

Environment Agency Flood warning information     Floodline telephone:  0345 988 1188       Report damage to the natural environment:  0800 80 70 60

Devon County Council Flood Risk Management    Report Highway flooding or blocked road drains: 0345 1551004

South West Water Sewer flooding    Report sewer flooding: 0344 3462020    Report a water leak: 0800 230 0561 

East Devon Flood Alleviation

Useful publications

Preparing for a flood, personal safety: Red Cross, Prepare for Flooding

Preparing your property for Flooding: Environment Agency, Property protection or The Flood Hub, Property Flood Resilience

Flood resources: Blue Pages

Contact us

Lympstone Flood Resilience Group

Phil Corcos Tel 07715 454726

John Brewer Tel 01395 708233

Lympstone Parish Council

Cllr David Young Tel 01392 876929

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