Areas of the UK Most Prone to Flooding

Guest Post by Oliver Archibald

Areas already prone to flooding are at increasing risk due to global warming

Even though the UK and England can be a wet and miserable place at times there are some areas in the country that can be even worse when the water starts pouring from the skies. Some areas in England are extremely prone to be flooded almost every year.

According to the Environment Agency in the UK over 5 million people in both England and Wales live in an area that is at risk of flooding from both the sea and rivers. For obvious reasons these are usually the towns and cities located close to the sea or by any major river.

Areas in the North of England are also more prone to flooding since there is a large difference in the land levels and a flooded river at a higher altitude can affect villages and cities below it.

Hartlepool is one of the cities in the UK that would be most affected by a major flood. Unlike most cities along the coast it does not have a well developed flood protection system and its low level makes it an increased risk for flooding.

The area in the North West around Carlisle is also very prone to flooding according to information from the Environment Agency. Rivers and lakes are located all around the North Western area of England and there is a 1 in 200 chance that these places will be flooded every single year. Even though it might not seem a huge number, it is likely to change due to the changing weather conditions globally.

Further down the West coast of England you will find the large city of Liverpool. Even though it has a fairly advanced flood protection system an increase in the sea level will flood some of the areas based right next to the sea. The area around Liverpool airport has been strengthened to hold off any major flooding and can be used to get people out of the area if necessary.

Most of the south coast of England could be affected if flooding started to occur around that area. Since it is all very close to a large body of water, an increase in the water level could have devastating effects on cities like Southampton and Bournemouth.

Even if you move inland you will not be safe from the effects of flooding. In Bedford there is also a 1/200 chance of flooding each year due to the major rivers flowing along the city borders. This could potentially affect thousands of people even in the heart of England. There are some cities that have felt severe floods in the last couple of years and it has been a main factor in why some towns and cities have started improving their flooding defences. Just because you live in the middle of England, that doesn’t mean that a very heavy rainfall couldn’t affect your small river enough to have it start running through your own living room.

The five million people in England that are at risk of flooding every year is also likely to increase because of the constant change in climate.


This article was written by Policy Expert; UK advisors in every aspect of home risk assurance. If you’re worried about the potential risk of flooding you can seek help with both buildings and contents insurance from


Image credits: Gavin Lynn, comedy_nose via Flickr
Thomas Schueneman
Thomas Schueneman
Tom is the founder and managing editor of and the PlanetWatch Group. His work appears in Triple Pundit, Slate, Cleantechnia, Planetsave, Earth911, and several other sustainability-focused publications. Tom is a member of the Society of Environmental Journalists.

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