Bybrook Barn Garden Centre Ltd and Others v Kent County Council: QBD 5 Nov 1999

Owners of land downstream of a culvert had their lands flooded after works on land upstream changed the water flow, causing the culvert to be inadequate to cope with the water now running off.
Held: The culvert did not constitute a nuisance, since following earlier cases, and an extension of the law of nuisance to that of negligence, the owner of a riparian property took the risk of flooding as a natural consequence of owning such land. Although the culvert taking the dyke under Cemetery Lane when originally constructed caused some interference with the flows when it was constructed, ‘that evidence. . . does not in my judgment demonstrate that the culvert then gave rise to a nuisance. In my judgment the evidence as to flooding, both positive and negative, shows that when constructed the culvert was of adequate capacity to carry the natural flow of water within the dyke; and that the flooding in 1993 and 1996 and the continuing risk of flooding of the site agreed by the experts . . . are the result of changes within the catchment area.’


Robert Owen QC


Gazette 17-Nov-1999


appliedRadstock Co-operative and Industrial Society v Norton-Radstock Urban District Council 1976
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Cited by:

Appeal fromBybrook Barn Garden Centre Ltd and Others v Kent County Council CA 8-Jan-2001
A culvert had been constructed taking a stream underneath the road. At the time when it came into the ownership of the local authority, it was adequate for this purpose. Later developments increased the flow, and the culvert came to become an . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.


Updated: 19 May 2022; Ref: scu.78790