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Apply for a watercourse consent

Required documents

Make sure you send us the following documents with your application:

  • The location plan with the site highlighted in red
  • A detailed drawing or cross-sectional drawing of the work you want to do
  • An ecological statement
  • A method statement of what you want to do, how you will do it, what materials you will use and how long it will take.

You also need to make sure your application meets the terms of the Water Framework Directive (WFD) assessment which aims to protect watercourses and wildlife.


Watercourse consent costs £50 for each structure. If you don’t send us the required documents, your application will be refused and you will have to reapply and pay the fee again.


Apply for a watercourse consent


What happens next?

  1. We will send you a letter to confirm that we have received your application within five working days.
  2. An engineer will review your application and the notes made during the internal consultation.
  3. The engineer will contact you to let you know the outcome of your application within eight weeks of submission.

What to do if consent is granted

If we approve your application for ordinary watercourse consent, you may start your work. In some cases, we may apply additional conditions. These can be certain timescales or gaining additional permits or permission from other bodies. If there are conditions, we will notify you at the time the consent is issued.

What to do if consent is not granted

If you disagree with our decision, you can appeal under Section 23 of the Land Drainage Act 1991.

If you have not submitted enough information for us to decide whether to grant consent, you can reapply with the required documents. You will need to pay the fee again.

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