A planned 43-home development that had neighbours fearing flooding has been approved – but developers will have to make sure drainage ditches are as large as possible.

Developers at Redrow Homes want to build the new houses at Newell Green in Warfield. Neighbours feared the development would make flooding they already experience even worse – arguing that water would run off from the new homes into their gardens.

But council planning officers and Redrow staff said the plans did enough to prevent the risk of flooding.

Planning officer recommended that councillors approve the proposals at a Bracknell Forest Council planning committee on Thursday, November 9.

He said that most of the site was at low risk of flooding, that the plans were designed to withstand exceptional flooding events, and that developers had agreed a legal commitment to clear out drainage ditches yearly.

Mr Lunn also said that, if approved, Redrow would pay money to the council as a contribution to drainage improvements elsewhere.

And Tilly Whishaw, head of planning at Redrow, said the drainage plans were the “best possible solution” to potential flooding risks, after detailed talks with council officers.

She said: “The drainage strategy has been scrutinised in a high level of detail and the proposals provide the best possible solution.

“Detailed discussions have been held with the local flood authority throughout the whole application process and it was agreed that the proposals in front of you provide the best drainage mitigation.”

She added: “The proposed designs are to withstand a 1-in-100 year flood event.” And she said Redrow’s agreed payment to drainage elsewhere was “a reflection of Redrow’s understanding of the local drainage issues.”

READ MORE: Gardens will flood if Warfield development approved, neighbours fear

But neighbours said they were still worried that proposed drainage ditches were too shallow, and would become blocked easily.

One of them, Vicki Emberson, branded the legal agreement requiring drains to be cleared as a “desperate 11th hour addition just to get this application through.”

She said: “We all know that water runs downhill – to our houses in this case. This land is heavy London clay. It already becomes saturated and our gardens flood regularly.”

She added: “We are not opposed to this building application in general – in fact far from it. We want this development to proceed but not unreasonably we’re asking that we don not suffer detriment as a result.”

After lengthy discussion, councillors agreed to approve the application – but on the condition that Redrow does everything it can to make the drainage ditches larger.

The said the application would only be approved if Redrow provided further details including “exploration of all reasonable options to maximise the capacity of the proposed drainage ditches.”