Grant funding to help Devon Communities be better prepared in the event of flooding

Following the recent exceptional weather conditions and the success of the launch of the Devon Community Resilience Forum, Devon Community Together is opening a “fast Track” Devon Emergency Flood Resilience Fund. The fund is financed by Devon County Council and is part of the Council’s commitment to assisting communities to help themselves.

Works and equipment have made a huge difference in both feeling we are better prepared and able to cope should we flood again.

Kingsbridge Flood Group, provided by the Pathfinder Project

Purpose of fund and criteria

Recent experience has shown that a wide range of small resilience measures can make a real difference both to the risk of flooding itself but particularly to the speed at which both individual householders and communities as a whole can respond.   These measures range from the provision of sandbag stores and other flood protection equipment, road signs, tools and personal protective equipment.

It is important that the community sets out their own shopping list. Examples of resilience measures can be provided by the Forum, other communities or the Devon County Council Flood and Coastal Risk Management Team.

Area of benefit

The area of benefit will be Devon – NOT including Plymouth and Torbay

Who can apply

The Fund  is only open to community groups, flood groups, parish/town councils etc. and not for individuals.

The Fund is available to groups with a community emergency plan in place as well as those looking to set one up.

How much can you apply for?

Grants of up to £2,000.

What can be applied for

  • Rapid purchase of simple flood equipment (temporary portable deployable flood barriers, sand bags, PVC sheeting, sand hoppers, sand store, tools (shovels, etc), signs, road signs, emergency blankets, torches , high visibility jackets, radios for volunteer wardens etc ) 
  • Exceptionally, a contribution to small scale, practical works that will provide immediate benefit to the community. For example, opportunities to clear out local ditches will be considered where either the landowner is unknown or where the community judges to believe that it won’t/can’t be done by the riparian owner.

This is will be a one-off pioneer clearance ‘without prejudice’ to reduce flood risk to the community …not to relieve anyone of their riparian responsibilities i.e. Each small scale work proposal will have to be considered on a case by case basis.

There must be some initial dialogue with the Flood and Coastal Risk Management Team to check whether there might be any scope for such work.  Please see next section for works that are not eligible. For small work enquiries, please contact the Flood and Coastal Risk Management mailbox: [email protected]  or call 01392 38 3000 (ask for Flood Risk)


What cannot be applied for?

  • Studies or investigations to reduce flood risk – this scheme is to fund equipment and minor works that will provide immediate benefit to the community.
  • Activities that are being promoted through the Devon County Council community self-help / Road Warden scheme, such as clearance of drains and the Snow Warden Schemes.
  • Routine maintenance work or work that DCC is better placed to arrange, such as clearance of drains.  Please see links to the information on Highways drainage clearance, the Road Warden and Snow Warden scheme and the support that Highways can offer (i.e. H&S training) for such work :
  • Any works on public sewerage systems managed and maintained by South West Water
  • Grants to clear private ditches that fall within riparian responsibilities and will only benefit that landowner rather than the wider community.
  • General maintenance and repairs of flood defences, unless there is a significant risk of not doing so and ownership responsibilities are unclear.
  • Individual property protection work, such as flood gates, flood boards and non-return valves etc. Enquiries for such improvements should be made direct to [email protected]

Next Steps

Applications will usually be processed within 14 days of receipt

You will be contacted by email to confirm approval of your application

With the exception of minor work, equipment must be purchased within a month of receiving  grant approval  

As the Flood and Coastal Risk management Team’ input is required for small scale, practical works, we accept that the project may carry over to the next financial year.


How can you apply?

There no closing date for applications, however we urge communities to make the most of the funding as it is available on a first come first basis.

Should the scheme be oversubscribed, applications that meet the eligibility criteria but cannot be supported will be placed on a reserve list and may be offered funding in the next financial year, should more funding is made available.

How will payments be made?

Payments will be made by bank transfer. The fund is unable to make payments direct to contractors/suppliers.

It should also be noted that the applicants remain responsible for all aspects of the work and the DCT, the Forum or County Council will not intervene in disputes between applicants and suppliers and contractors. The County Council cannot accept any liability for any damages, financial loss, etc. resulting from the group or parish and town councils’ activities.

Please download your application form here (follow this link to download application guidance)

Return completed form by email to Devon Communities Together, [email protected] ref: DCRF

or by post to:

Devon Communities Together

Units 3 & 4 Cranmere Court

Lustleigh Court

Matford Business Park

Exeter EX2 8PW

Additional Information:

Prepare for a Flood

What to do before, during and after a flood

Sand bag leaflets

Link to - Sand bags provisions from District Councils

Health and Safety Risk Assessment

It is advised that the community carries out a Health and Safety risk assessment before deploying any flood resilience measures. This introduction and example from the community may be useful.

Links :

Introduction to Risk Assessments




  1. Getting together and organising the work
  2. Knowing the unknowns
  3. Identifying skills and resources
  4. Legal Health Check
  5. Organising key facilities
  6. Keeping in touch
  7. Activating your emergency plan
  8. Taking control
  9. Testing your plan
10. Information and Publications
About us
Contact Devon Community Resilience