The forgotten 500: The implications of the major downgrading of flood defence investment in England

A TCPA briefing

(May 2024)

In January 2024, the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) revealed a major gap in funding for flood defences in England. The striking conclusion of the PAC report is that of the 2,000 flood defence schemes designed to protect communities at critical risk of flooding, 500 will no longer receive the necessary investment in the current funding programme (which runs from 2021-2027). There has also been no commitment to fund these projects after the current programme ends.

This TCPA briefing sets out the background to the major downgrading of flood defence works in England. It then uses Lowestoft as case study to explore the dramatic implications for those communities where strategic flood defence investment has been withdrawn.