The sequential test will be applied rigorously across North Norfolk and most new development should be located in Flood Risk Zone 1. New development in Flood Risk Zones 2 and 3a will be restricted to the following categories: 

  • water compatible uses
  • minor development (xxxix)
  • changes of use (to an equal or lower risk category in the flood risk vulnerability classification) where there is no operational development (xl); and
  • ‘less vulnerable’ uses where the sequential test has been passed.

New development in Flood Zone 3b will be restricted to water compatible uses only. 

The Strategic Flood Risk Assessment defines zones2, 3a and 3b in parts of North Norfolk and this will be used to inform the application of the sequential test. Where this information is not available, the Environment Agency Flood Risk Zones and a site specific Flood Risk Assessment will be used to apply the sequential test.

A site-specific Flood Risk Assessment which takes account of future climate change must be submitted with appropriate planning applications (xli) in Flood Zones 2, 3a and 3b and for development proposals of 1 hectare or greater in Flood Zone 1.

Land in Flood Zone 1 that is surrounded by areas of Flood Zones 2 or 3 will be treated as if it is in the higher risk zone and a Flood Risk Assessment will be required to prove that safe access / egress exists for the development or that the land will be sustainable for the duration of the flood period.

Appropriate surface water drainage arrangements for dealing with surface water run off from new development will be required. The use of Sustainable Drainage Systems will be the preference unless, following an adequate assessment, soil conditions and / or engineering feasibility dictate otherwise.

(xxxix) Minor development is defined in PPS25 as; ‘Minor non-residential extensions: industrial / commercial / leisure etc extensions with a footprint less than 250 m2. Alterations: development that does not increase the size of buildings, e.g. alterations to external appearance. ‘Householder’ development e.g. sheds, garages, games rooms etc within the curtilage of the existing dwelling in addition to physical extensions to the existing dwelling itself. This definition excludes any proposed development that would create a separate dwelling within the curtilage of the existing dwelling (e.g. subdivision of houses into flats)’.

(xl) For the purpose of this policy ‘operational development’ is defined as ‘the carrying out of building, engineering, mining or other operations in, on, over or under land’, in line with the Town and Country Planning Act 1990.

(xli) As outlined in PPS 25.