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56 GROUNDWORKS


WITH THE CONTINUING UNPREDICTABILITY OF OUR WEATHER ALL YEAR ROUND, PERMEABLE PAVING IS NOW A NECESSITY


However, when the overall drainage costs are taken into consideration, permeable paving can be a very cost-effective solution compared to traditional methods. Many permeable paving ranges can be machine laid, reducing both labour costs and project completion times.


It is also worth bearing in mind that, unlike some other SuDS solutions, permeable paving does not require any additional land take, and so does not reduce the number of viable units on a housing project. In terms of design, permeable paving can enhance the style, character and visual


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appearance of a home. Permeable paving is increasingly manufactured with the same aesthetic benefits of the non-permeable product equivalent, ensuring that style is not compromised when employing a functional SuDS solution.


Looking to the future of permeable


paving, 2019 will see more innovation in permeable paving product styles, with manufacturers creating interesting permeable paving styles and designing additional laying patterns, moving away from the more traditional herringbone-laid rectangular paving.


LEGISLATION Today, few would disagree with the principle that SuDS and techniques such as permeable paving are needed to help fight flooding and pollution – particularly with overloaded sewers, urbanisation and climate change. In April 2015, the Government introduced new planning guidelines for the use of SuDS on any new housing site with more than 10 units. The aim of the guidelines is to ensure that any new development has measures in place for


combating potential flooding issues. Wales presents a good example of this. As of 7 January this year, proposed new developments must be served by sustain- able drainage systems which comply with the Welsh Ministers’ Standards, and which are approved by the SuDS Approving Body (SAB).


This is a very important milestone in a long journey towards full acceptance of the importance of SuDS in the UK, which is obviously good news for suppliers, who will hope to see increased demand for water management products and services. Furthermore, the Environment Agency recommends that where appropriate, storm water source control measures, which also improve water quality, should be incorporated into a development proposal. They are essential for any new development in areas where existing sewerage systems are at full capacity. With the recent flash floods in parts of England, it appears highly likely that this legislation will be adopted throughout the rest of the UK.


Brian Wilson is sales manager at Tobermore


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