Help needed to better understand York’s flooded historic buildings in 2015

As well as the devastating effect on local people and businesses, the 2015 Boxing Day floods in York had a serious impact on our historic buildings and heritage. Some of this damage could have been avoided with the right action before, during and afterwards.


As well as needing to better understand how flooding can be managed in the city in the future, is also important to use the experiences of 2015 to form a better understanding of how flooding affects the material and structures of our historic buildings in York and the communities who live in them.

Alessandra Sprega, a conservation architect who is currently researching post natural disaster recovery of cultural heritage for a PhD in Conservation Studies in the University of York, is currently conducting this line of research.

Alessandra’s study responds to the urgent need to investigate how we can improve the resilience of York’s historic buildings to flooding by working with local community knowledge and experience. Its ultimate objective is to inform and involve York citizens and practitioners to create a more resilient historic city to cope with the threat of flooding.


In order to be able to achieve these aims, Alessandra is appealing to York residents aged 18+ who live in a historic building and experienced the 2015 flood to complete an online questionnaire titled “Mapping the resilience of York’s historic buildings after the 2015 flood”.

Your knowledge and perceptions will help to map the resilience of the historic centre of York by highlighting effective approaches and measures to recover and prepare buildings for future flooding.

The questionnaire, which takes about 10 minutes to complete, can be found here:

If you have any questions regarding the survey or would like to know more about the project please contact Alessandra Sprega directly, who will be pleased to answer any queries you have about this research: