Abingdon Tennis Club given green light at planning for flood mitigation plans

When Abingdon Tennis Club started planning to extend and improve its facilities for the use of the local community, the risk of flooding was rightly flagged up by the Council and local residents. The Club turned to Wilsham Consulting, as a local specialist in sustainable civil engineering design to review and advise on the flooding issues.

Some residents were concerned that the works could make the existing flooding worse, a genuine concern in relation to many similar multi use games area (MUGA) developments.

Tennis club FRA review


In the past impermeable asphalt was often specified, which resulted in runoff increasing causing ponding if not discharged adequately.

A professional flood risk assessment was produced by Wilsham Consulting which reviewed the risks of flooding to the facility and the development in relation to the existing situation.

A key element was consideration of an adequate depth of subbase to provide effective attenuation through a porous asphalt surface course, such that the development would result in a minor reduction in flooding.

With respect to the requirements of NPPF and the latest planning practice guidance, it was concluded that:

  •  The majority of the area to be developed is in zone 2 (medium risk) with a small section in zone 3 (high risk).
  • The waters back up slowly rather than flow through the flooded zone. As such the approach of flood waters will be obvious and slow allowing for safe closure of the facility.
  • The proposals are likely to provide more effective discharge to groundwater than is currently provided by the natural soils. The proposal should result in a slight reduction in flood risk.
  • The subbase and asphalt surfaces will be permeable, to a rate above the maximum intensity likely for this location, even including for considerable silting over many years.
  • The new surfaces will be at a similar level to the existing grass, so there will be no effective reduction in flood plain volumes.
  • The fencing will be open, so there will be no obstruction to flood or surface water flows.
  • The proposals are Water-Compatible Development so suitable at the proposed location as regards flood issues.

Wilsham Consulting's professional flood risk assessment (FRA) was reviewed and approved by the Local Authority as adequately addressing the flooding concerns.

At Wilsham Consulting we can often save clients considerable time and money, by producing professional flood risk assessments, sustainable drainage designs and MUGA designs.

Such an approch enables greater client control over budgets and costs, with a fixed approved design available for competitive tender to surfacing contractors and groundworkers. All to often clients approch specialist design and build contractors who lack the professional design liability insurance, design independence and due to the lack of competition can be poor value for money. Contact us to find out how we can save your community development money and time.