Applications rise for powers to acquire land

Kasmira Jefford
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THE NUMBER of compulsory purchase orders (CPOs) submitted to councils soared by 61 per cent last year in a sign that more development activity is under way across the UK.

Research out today by law firm Bond Dickinson shows that 58 applications were made last year for CPOs compared to just 36 in 2013 – the lowest level since 2003.

Most of these were successful with more than 95 per cent of housing and planning CPOs filed between 2012 and 2014 given the go-ahead.

Bond Dickinson legal director Frank Orr said: “This significant recovery in the number of planning CPOs submitted... may be a positive indicator of returning confidence in an economic upturn.”

Compulsory purchase orders allow land or property to be obtained without consent of the owner and are typically enforced when a development is considered to be in the public interest.

Croydon Council last year granted a CPO that allowed Westfield and Hammerson to push ahead with the £1bn redevelopment of the Whitgift Centre, handing them powers to take control of the interests of leaseholders and some freeholders in the existing centre.

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