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Upper Kent

Burneside, Staveley, Ings and Upstream Measures

The Environment Agency is delivering a proposed three-phase Flood Risk Management Scheme to better protect homes and business from flooding in the Kent catchment, and improve the local environment and community amenities. Kendal is the first phase to be delivered, followed by Burneside, Staveley, and Ings as the second phase, and upstream measures including flood storage as the third phase. In addition, Natural Flood Management measures are being integrated into the plans which aim to slow the flow of water and provide wider environmental benefits across the catchment.


COVID-19 and impacts to delivery of flood risk management schemes

Although we are in a difficult time, the Environment Agency are committed to, and are successfully progressing the delivery of the proposed three phase Flood Risk Management Scheme to better protect residential and business properties from flooding in the Kent catchment, and improve the local environment and community amenities. Whilst construction has started in Kendal (Phase 1), some minor delays may be encountered to the overall programme as a consequence of the impacts of COVID-19. Work will continue to develop the scheme design for Burneside, Staveley and Ings (Phase 2), and upstream measures including storage (Phase 3).



The Kent catchment 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.

Since the flooding in 2015, the Environment Agency along with Cumbria County Council, South Lakeland District Council, United Utilities and other professional partners including the local community have investigated over 60 different options for how to best manage flood risk across the catchment. Each option was carefully considered for their technical feasibility, economic viability, environmental sustainability and social acceptability. The preferred options for the Kent catchment were presented in September 2018 which consisted of a combination of options that included raised linear walls and embankments, conveyance improvements and upstream storage. £76 million will be invested in this combination of measures that will reduce the risk of flooding to a 1% chance in any one year to 1,480 homes and 1,100 local businesses which employ 6,105 people in the town of Kendal and villages of Burneside, Staveley and Ings. This investment will protect the local economy worth £277 million and will reduce flood damages by £880 million.


Taking a catchment based approach the Flood Risk Management Scheme will be delivered through the Kent catchment in three phases:

Phase 1: Kendal Flood Risk Management Scheme
  • Focusing on Kendal, a combination of raised linear defences and improved conveyance will protect homes and businesses from Mintsfeet in the northern end of the town to Helsington Mills in the southern end of the town.
  • For more information on Phase 1 click here.


Phase 2: Burneside, Staveley and Ings Flood Risk Management Scheme
  • The Flood Risk Management Scheme will protect homes and businesses in the communities of Burneside, Staveley and Ings. The scheme will comprise of linear flood defences, flow routing improvements such as raised kerbs and localised land raising as well as improving the flow of water where the River Gowan joins the River Kent.


Phase 3: Upstream Storage, Improved Conveyance, and Natural Flood Management (NFM)
  • Two proposed flood storage areas on the River Kent located upstream of Kendal in Kentrigg (volume around 1.7million m3) and upstream of Staveley in Kentmere (1.1 million m3). These two storage areas will limit and control the volume of flood water flowing through Kendal during a flood, providing increased resilience to bridges downstream and enabling more efficient drainage of surface water into the river.
  • A 2km long upper catchment drain from Stock Beck East and North into the River Mint is proposed to reduce the risk of flooding from Stock Beck in the residential area of Sandylands in Kendal.

Upstream storage will provide the necessary storage capacity required to temporarily hold excess flood water during storm conditions. By maximising and formalising the existing floodplain in key upstream locations, it provides the ability to reduce the amount of flood water that flows through the downstream villages and Kendal town. These measures, in conjunction with works to improve conveyance of water and the installation of NFM measures to hold water and slow the flow, provide a suite of effective measures.

These are important elements to complete the three phase scheme, each providing a number of flood risk benefits and playing a vital role in managing excess flows from the upper reaches of the catchment.


The completion of all three Phases will provide downstream communities with the 1 in 100 year standard of protection; the equivalent of a 1% chance of flooding in any given year.


Journey Map to Delivery



Catchment Map

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



Programme Dates

Construction of Kendal (Phase 1) will start in Winter 2020. The key programme dates for Burneside, Staveley and Ings (Phase 2) and Upstream Measures including Storage (Phase 3) are outlined in the table below.

Milestone Start End
Linear Defences at Burneside, Staveley & Ings (Phase 2)
Phase 2 data gathering

Phase 2 detailed design

Phase 2 planning submission/approval

Phase 2 construction

Summer 2020

Summer 2020

Spring 2022

Summer 2024

Spring 2022

Spring 2024

Autumn 2023


Upstream Measures Flood Storage and Stockbeck Catchment Drain, Kendal (Phase 3)
Phase 3 data gathering

Phase 3 detailed design

Phase 3 planning submission/approval

Phase 3 construction

Summer 2020

Summer 2021

Spring 2022

Summer 2024

Spring 2022

Spring 2024

Autumn 2023


Natural Flood Management Projects
Peatland restoration (NFM)

Staveley (NFM)


April 2020


March 2021


(Dates last updated April 2021)




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.