C753: SuDS Manual Webinars Get Underway

Written By: Regional Technical Manager, Hydro International UK Stormwater Divison

At 964 pages, the updated CIRIA C753 : The SuDS Manual has increased in size by 50% compared to its predecessor C697 and is a formidable document to get to grips with.  More than 800 engineers tuned into the first of in our series of webinars to introduce the manual and outline its key points.

It’s not too late if you missed it. You can watch a recording of the first webinar here and a slightly condensed version of the slides used with some additional text commentary is available at https://sway.com/YPbUbADjQUMmAihT.

Over the four sessions the series will cover specific aspects of the new manual.  Please go to the links below to sign up for the next events.

SuDS Manual: CPD Seminar #2 Water Quantity DesignThursday, 25th February 20161-2pm GMT

Click here to Register

SuDS Manual: CPD Seminar #3 Water Quality DesignWednesday, 23rd March 20161-2pm GMT

Click here to Register

SuDS Manual: CPD Seminar #4 Maintenance Thursday, 28th April 20161-2pm GMT

Click here to Register

I was a member of the project steering group consulted prior to the publication of the new document. After each webinar, I’ll also post a summary of the topic on Engineering Nature’s Way.


C753 an Introduction to the SuDS Manual

Here’s an overview of the first webinar which took place on 28th January 2016.  We began by asking the participants to indicate how familiar they were with the new manual.


Webinar 1 Poll 1


Most of the respondents indicated that they had some level of familiarity with the manual, but very few would describe themselves as very familiar with it yet.

A brief look back at CIRIA SuDS guidance

Good practice guidance in relation to SuDS from CIRIA is nothing new, with guidance dating back to 2000: In 2007: C697 The SUDS Manual was published, replacing earlier design manuals and in November 2015: C753 The SuDS Manual brought good practice guidance right up to date. So, how does C753 compare to C697?

A change of mind set…

The biggest change is probably one of mind set. Right from the first line of the executive summary, C697 presented surface water as a problem to be managed or mitigated against, stating:

“Appropriately designed, constructed and maintained SuDS can mitigate many of the adverse effects of urban stormwater runoff on the environment.” – C697

Whereas C753 turns this on its head and in its foreword encourages readers to view surface water management as an opportunity, stating that:

“Surface water runoff should be managed for maximum benefit.” – C753

This change in approach is demonstrated by the expansion of the familiar SuDS Triangle into the Four Pillars of SuDS, with each pillar representing a key benefit category:

Webinar 1 4 PillarsSource: Susdrain.org


A more accessible guide to SuDS…

C753 is also not only more colourful than C697, it has also been carefully organised to provide an increasing level of detail as you progress through the manual.  Thus allowing readers with different needs and interest levels to access the sections most appropriate to them.

Webinar 1 Manual Structure

Source: Susdrain.org


A multi-disciplinary approach to sustainable drainage…

The new manual has also been written not just for engineers or designers, but with different professions in mind to encourage the spirit of co-operation and the multi-disciplinary approach key to delivery of good quality surface water management.

Image courtesy of CIRIASource: Susdrain.org


Clear and focused objectives, criteria and standards for sustainable drainage…

C753 sets out clear performance objectives for each of the four pillars of SuDS and provides guidance on minimum design standards, performance targets or minimum levels of service that should be achieved for specific criteria in order to meet those objectives.

Myth busting and success stories…

C753 includes a set of chapters that deal specifically with complex or challenging site conditions, where SuDS have often been seen as difficult or complex to implement.  The manual provides tips on delivery and gives case examples of where SuDS have been successfully used, even on the most technically challenging of sites.

A comprehensive toolbox for sustainable drainage…

Much like C697, C753 does not attempt to be a “how to” instruction manual providing a one-size-fits-all solution, but rather gives consistently presented and balanced information on a range of components, which can be mixed and matched to best suit the site conditions.

Importantly, proprietary treatment systems, such as Hydro International’s StormTrain® Series, which were previously considered as pre-treatment only, are now presented as viable treatment components in their own right.

Webinar 1 Toolbox

The SuDS Toolbox


Comprehensive checks and measures for SuDS…

C697 included a general design checklist and suggested that maintenance schedules could be developed into maintenance checklists to ensure that no critical actions were missed.

C753 takes this on to a whole new level, by providing comprehensive and specific checklists covering the full range of SuDS planning, design, implementation and on-going maintenance and management.


Sign up now

Participation in our first webinar was fully subscribed, so please sign up early to be sure to secure your place for future events.


SuDS Manual: CPD Seminar #2 Water Quantity Design

Thursday, 25th February 2016      1-2pm GMT

Click here to Register


SuDS Manual: CPD Seminar #3 Water Quality Design

Wednesday, 23rd March 2016      1-2pm GMT

Click here to Register


SuDS Manual: CPD Seminar #4 Maintenance

 Thursday, 28th April 2016      1-2pm GMT

Click here to Register





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