Making changes to a watercourse

As Lead Local Flood Authority (LLFA), Hampshire County Council is responsible for giving permission for works on ordinary watercourses

An ordinary watercourse is a watercourse that is not part of a main river. It includes rivers, streams, land and roadside ditches, drains, cuts, culverts, dikes, sluices, sewers (other than public sewers within the meaning of the Water Industry Act 1991) and passages, through which water flows.
Hampshire County Council’s responsibility

You must apply to Hampshire County Council for consent to carry out work which may:

  • place or alter a structure within an ordinary watercourse
  • affect the flow or storage of water within an ordinary watercourse

This includes temporary structures.

If your watercourse is part of a main river then you will need to apply for the consent of the Environment Agency for any proposed works
When consent is required

Check the guide to ordinary watercourse consenting to see if your works need consent.

Information needed

The information that you need to supply with your application is listed in the validation checklist for applications (ordinary watercourse consents)

If you do not supply all of this information your application will not proceed and it will be returned
Application fees
The fee for applying for an ordinary watercourse consent is £50 per structure. The total cost depends on the type of work you are doing. See the ordinary watercourse application charging guide.
Advice before applying

We offer a pre-application service for ordinary watercourse consents. This provides:

  • specific advice for works on your site
  • a checking service to ensure your consent application is valid

There is a charge for this service.

Request pre-application advice

Apply for consent

Complete the ordinary watercourse land drainage consent application form and return it to us with related plan and documents and the appropriate application fee.

Application form - ordinary watercourse land drainage consent

Guidance notes - ordinary watercourse land drainage consent

Email completed forms and related plans and documents to

The application must be completed accurately. The accompanying information must be clear. If any information is missing, your application could be delayed.

One application form can be made for multiple structures, if located in the same area or on the same watercourse.

Applications can also be sent by post along with the application fee to:

Applications for OW Land Drainage Consent
Flood & Water Management
Economy, Transport & Environment Department
Elizabeth II Court West
Hampshire County Council
The Castle
SO23 8UD