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This publication is available at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/a120-little-hadham-bypass-and-flood-alleviation-scheme/a120-little-hadham-bypass-and-flood-alleviation-scheme
Update: August 2018
The Environment Agency is working with Hertfordshire County Council to develop proposals for a flood alleviation scheme for Little Hadham in conjunction with a bypass on the A120.
Planning permission was received for the scheme in January 2017. Use reference no: PL/0744/15 to view the full application on Hertfordshire County Council’s website.
The two organisations are now working towards getting the land and rights over land needed to build the scheme. This could be by agreement with the landowners or by compulsory purchase.
On 21 July 2017 the Environment Agency made a compulsory purchase order to give a more certain programme for acquiring the land. The full set of compulsory purchase order documents can be viewed at any time on the A120 bypass pages on Hertfordshire County Council’s website. The objection period for the compulsory purchase order ended on Friday 8 September 2017. Since then the Environment Agency has completed negotiations with landowners on the land they require.
A public inquiry for the Hertfordshire County Council compulsory purchase order and side roads order was held at Little Hadham village hall on Tuesday 17 July and Wednesday 18 July 2018. The Environment Agency will update this page once the public inquiry decision is announced later this year.
The villages of Little Hadham and Hadham Ford have suffered from flooding from the River Ash and its tributaries on several occasions, including a number of events between 2001 and 2014. Environment Agency modelling indicates that 72 properties in Little Hadham and Hadham Ford are at risk from a 1% (1:100) chance of flooding in any year with 48 being at high risk and 24 at medium risk.
Following the flooding in October 2001, the Environment Agency developed the River Ash Flood Risk Management Strategy to examine the extent of flooding along the river and evaluate potential solutions for reducing flood risk. The study concluded that flood alleviation measures for the River Ash would not meet the minimum cost-benefit criteria for government funding at that time.
Hertfordshire County Council’s proposal for an A120 bypass allows the Environment Agency to revisit the opportunity to provide flood alleviation measures for Little Hadham and Hadham Ford.
In May 2011 the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs announced a new approach to funding flood risk management, called ‘Flood and Coastal Resilience Partnership Funding’. The new approach allows for contributions from central government funding to be made available to more flood and coastal risk management projects. The amount of government funding available to each project depends on the benefits delivered by the project. This new approach allowed the Environment Agency to consider the Little Hadham scheme again.
Hertfordshire County Council’s proposal for an A120 bypass around Little Hadham provides the opportunity to take forward a joint project incorporating flood alleviation measures. This would involve using the bypass embankment to create flood storage areas to reduce the risk of flooding to the 72 properties at risk in Little Hadham and Hadham Ford.
The Environment Agency is therefore working in partnership with Hertfordshire County Council to develop a flood alleviation scheme in conjunction with the bypass.
The flood scheme does not qualify for 100% central government funding as the benefits are not high enough. Under the partnership funding approach the Environment Agency needed to make up the funding gap with contributions from other sources, such as from partners and those that will benefit from the scheme, to allow the project to go ahead.
The proposed dual use of embankments to carry the bypass and manage flood water reduces the funding required to provide flood alleviation to Little Hadham and Hadham Ford, which together with a contribution from the Thames Regional Flood and Coastal Committee make the flood scheme affordable.
Funding for the flood alleviation scheme was first confirmed in 2014 and in conjunction with Hertfordshire County Council the Environment Agency held a pre-planning consultation between October and December 2014. This allowed all interested parties to express their views on the proposals.
Following this consultation, the Environment Agency and Hertfordshire County Council submitted a joint planning application in 2015, which was given consent in January 2017.
With the making of the compulsory purchase orders for the land required for the scheme, there was a period for objections to the compulsory purchase orders to be made. The objection period ended on Friday 8 September 2017. Subsequently the Environment Agency negotiated the withdrawal of objections to their compulsory purchase order for the land and rights needed for the flood alleviation elements of the project.
Find out more
Visit the A120 bypass pages on Hertfordshire County Council’s website to find out more about the project.
For any questions about the flood alleviation scheme please email the Environment Agency at firstname.lastname@example.org.