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Kendal Flood Risk Management Scheme

Information on this page has been provided by the Environment Agency and was correct at the time of upload. The Flood Hub is not responsible for any information held on this page. For any enquiries, see the Contact section of the page.



For information on how the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting the delivery of the flood scheme, download this document: Covid-19 and impacts to delivery of Flood Risk Management Schemes (January 2021).

This BBC Sounds episode looks at the flooding in Kendal, Cumbria in February 2020 and discusses flood defences, natural flood management and other solutions – Costing the Earth: Flooding Britain.

Kendal has a long history of flooding which was experienced most recently during Storm Desmond in 2015, when 2,276 properties and businesses were flooded in Kendal, Burneside, Staveley and Ings. The Environment Agency have been working closely with Cumbria County Council, South Lakeland District Council, United Utilities and other professional partners including the local community to better understand the complex flood issues that affect Kendal, Burneside, Staveley and Ings located within the River Kent catchment. They are developing a 3 phase Flood Risk Management Scheme that will reduce flood damages by £880 million.

Since 2016 the Environment Agency have worked with key partners and listened to and worked with the local community to generate over 60 different flood risk management options, each considered for their technical feasibility, economic viability, environmental sustainability and social acceptability. The preferred option was presented in September 2018.

Flood Risk Management Scheme appraisal process


There are 3 phases of the Flood Risk Management Scheme for Kendal, Burneside, Staveley and Ings, that in combination reduce the risk of flooding to 1% chance in any one year, compared to areas of Kendal that currently have a 20% chance of flooding in any one year. Phase 1 which will be delivered through Kendal comprises of linear defences and a new pumping station at Gooseholme, which would reduce the chance of flooding in Kendal to between 2% and 5% in any one year. The Phase 1 planning application was approved in March 2019, whilst the proposed Phases 2 and 3 will each be subject to planning applications and decision in Autumn/Winter 2020.

The completion of Phase 1 linear defences through Kendal will reduce the risk of flooding to residential and businesses properties. Phase 1 of the scheme will provide further indirect economic benefits to 1,712 businesses employing 6,105 people, which is worth £140 million to the annual local economy. Phase 1 will also reduce the risk of flooding to 82 community facilities and improve 5 hectares of habitat and recreational space, including 3km of riverside footpath improvements.

The expected construction cost of all 3 phases is approximately £76 million, reducing the risk of flooding to 1,480 homes and 1,151 local businesses across the catchment.

Click the link below to download a map of the catchment that shows the proposed 3 phase Flood Risk Management Scheme:

Catchment map with scheme details PDF


Key Programme Dates

Milestone Start End
Phase 1 planning

Phase 1 detailed design

Phase 1 construction

Winter 2018

Summer 2019

Early Spring 2021

Spring 2019

Summer 2021

Summer 2023

Phase 2 detailed design

Phase 2 planning

Phase 2 construction

Summer 2020

Spring 2023

Summer 2024

Spring 2022

Autumn 2023


Phase 3 detailed design

Phase 3 planning

Phase 3 construction

Summer 2021

Autumn 2022

Winter 2023

Winter 2023

Spring 2023



(Dates last updated March 2021)



South Lakeland District Council (SLDC) is acting as the accountable body in an Environment Agency (EA) application for European Regional Development Funding (ERDF) to deliver a scheme that is intended to increase the level of flood protection to businesses and residential properties in the North Kendal Industrial Area.

The North Kendal Industrial Area Flood Risk Management Scheme is part of a wider suite of flood risk management measures in the EA scheme that will increase the level of flood resilience and protection to the whole of Kendal.

SLDC was also the planning authority in relation to the EA’s scheme.

SLDC’s role in this process has therefore been administrative – in that it is acting as the accountable body for the funding application – and statutory as the planning authority.


To visit the Cumbria Partnership page, click here.