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Local Development Framework evidence base for the environment

LDF evidence base: environment.

Strategic flood risk assessment

Lewisham Council commissioned a Strategic Flood Risk Assessment (SFRA) in 2008 to provide an overview of flood risk in the borough. The assessment followed the Government guidelines set out in Planning Policy Statement 25 (PPS25) and was carried out with the support of the Environment Agency.

The SFRA report (Jacobs, 2008) identifies flooding sources, provides an assessment of the level of flooding associated with those identified areas and outlines the constraints of flooding on future development proposals.

Since 2008, many changes have taken place. The Government introduced the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) in 2012 and the National Planning Practice in 2014. Two key pieces of legislation have also been introduced - the Flood Risk Regulations in 2009 and the Flood and Water Management Act in 2010. 

The primary objective of the SFRA was to inform the revision of flooding policies including the allocation of land for development, within the emerging Local Development Framework. However the SFRA has a broader purpose so the 2015 update provides a more detailed view of flood risk in the borough. 

Lewisham Council has also adopted a Local Flood Risk Management Strategy to meet its obligations under the Flood Risk Regulations 2009 (FRRs) and the Flood and Water Management Act (FWMA) 2010. 

Sequential test

The sequential test document seeks to ensure the most suitable sites are put forward in the Council’s LDF documents by considering flood risk as a determining factor in assessing the potential and proposed allocation of sites.

The general approach to the assessment follows the Government guidelines set out in PPS25 and has been carried out with the support of the Environment Agency. The SFRA was used to inform the preparation of the sequential test and both documents are to be used in conjunction with each other.

Sites of importance for nature conservation survey (SINCS) 2016

This study will be used to inform preparation of the new Local Plan. It includes an assessment of the status and condition of habitat sites across the borough.

Ravensbourne river corridor improvement plan

The Ravensbourne river corridor improvement plan has been prepared in partnership with the Environment Agency. The plan assesses the river environment from Catford to the River Thames at Deptford and identifies how development and local initiatives can enhance its quality.

The plan provides the evidence for policies set out in the Lewisham LDF Core Strategy as well as guidance to residents, developers, designers, planners and others. This plan is also an action from the Environment Agency’s Thames Catchment Flood Management Plan to successfully manage flood risk.​

Leisure and open space study

The Leisure and Open Space Study provides an overarching review of open space in the borough. It provides an assessment of public open space, its characteristics and designations, as defined in Planning Policy Guidance 17 Planning for Open Spaces, Sport and Recreation (PPG17).

Metropolitan Open Land

Metropolitan Open Land (MOL) relates to strategically significant open spaces within the built environment of London.

Lewisham Council commissioned consultants Arup to carry out a MOL Review. The review tested the current strategic performance of MOL against the designation criteria set out in the London Plan. It identified:

  • Land with little or no justification for continued protection as MOL; and
  • New land where MOL protection is justified.

At this stage, the MOL Review is for information only and does not form part of our policy framework. It is an objective appraisal; not a decision making document.