Compulsory Purchase Order
The acquisition of land and property in the Hatfield Town Centre East redevelopment zone is necessary to enable the redevelopment process to go ahead.
To secure these interests the council submitted a Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) application to Central Government in July 2006 and the order was confirmed on 18 December 2007.
What is a CPO?
Compulsory purchase is a power that Government gives to local authorities under Section 226(1)(a) of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990. Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council can acquire land for areas that it thinks will facilitate the carrying out of development, redevelopment or improvement. The Government states that compulsory purchase powers are important as a means of assembling land that is likely to contribute to the achievement of any one or more of the following objects:
Anyone who has land compulsorily acquired is generally entitled to compensation.
The Hatfield Town Centre East CPO
Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council resolved at its Full Council meeting on 24 July 2006 to apply for powers to acquire the land and rights to enable the redevelopment of Hatfield Town Centre East to proceed. In order to acquire this land the council submitted a Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) application to Central Government.
The CPO Process
Before the council submitted the CPO application to Central Government every owner, leaseholder, tenant and occupier of land affected by the CPO was served a notice, which was also published in the local newspaper for a period of two weeks. Affected parties were given the opportunity to object to the CPO and a number of objections were received. These objections were considered at a public inquiry held in September 2007. Following the public inquiry the CPO was confirmed by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government on 18 December 2007.
The CPO Application
The CPO application that was submitted to Central Government in July 2006 comprised of the following documents, some of which can be accessed using the links below:
The CPO Statement of Reasons [106KB] outlines the reasons for seeking the rights and power to acquire Hatfield Town Centre East.
The CPO Map [457KB] shows that area affected by the Compulsory Purchase Order.
The CPO Schedule lists those interests that are required either in terms of property and interests to be acquired or rights and interests needed to allow the development to proceed. A copy of the CPO Schedule is available for inspection at the Council Offices in Welwyn Garden City.
Confirmation of the Hatfield Town Centre East CPO
The order was confirmed with modifications by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government on 18 December 2007. The modifications made relate to the right to swing the jib of a crane, loaded or unloaded, through the airspace over a number of plots subject of the order. The effect of the modification is to amend the wording of the right to make it clear that it may only be exercised for the purposes of constructing the development. The plots subject of such modification are plot numbers 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 105, 106, 107, 108, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 117, 124, 127, 129, 130, 131, 132, 133, 134, 135 and 137.
No other changes were made to the order by the Secretary of State.
A hard copy of the order as confirmed by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, the CPO map referred to therein and the modified CPO schedule pages are available for inspection at the Council Offices, The Campus, Welwyn Garden City.
Next Steps - taking possession of land/property
Whilst the CPO was made on the basis of the original redevelopment proposals approved in 2007, the council is now to take forward a revised scheme (see planning application S6/2010/0136/MA for further information). The revised scheme is consistent with the purposes for which the CPO was made, however, due to the nature of the revised scheme not all properties or rights originally included within the CPO are now required.
The council resolved at its Full Council meeting on 13 October 2010 to take all necessary steps under the CPO to secure the lands and interests required to enable the revised town centre redevelopment scheme. The council has determined the programme and method of acquisition for each CPO interest that has been identified as necessary to facilitate the revised scheme. The CPO Implementation Plan [367KB] shows the plots within the order that the council intends to progress.
The land and interests in land required for the revised scheme are to be secured by either notice to treat or general vesting declaration, details of which are provided below.
Notice to Treat
On 1 December 2010 the council served notice to treat in relation to the following plots and interests.
On 22 December 2010 the council served notice to treat in relation to the following plots and interests.
Notice of Entry
Following service of a notice to treat the council can take possession of the land by serving a notice of entry and can then enter the land on the date specified in the notice of entry (a minimum 14 days notice must be given before entry can be taken). Title to the land does not pass when the council enters the land and it can only carry out activities in connection with the purpose for which the land has been acquired. Title will only pass to the council once the issue of compensation has been settled either by agreement or by the Lands Tribunal and the land is formally acquired by the authority.
On 4 November 2011 the council served notice of entry in relation to the following plots and interests.
General Vesting Declaration
The council has also made three General Vesting Declarations (dated 25 November 2010) in respect of the following plots:
On the vesting date arising under each GVD, title together with the right to possession of the land will pass to the council. The vesting date arising under GVDs 1, 2 and 3 are as follows:
GVD 1 - the vesting date arising under GVD No 1 is 8 January 2011.
GVD 2 - the vesting date arising under GVD No 2 is 22 March 2011.
GVD 3 - the vesting date arising under GVD No 3 is 9 July 2011.
The council can confirm those plots and rights which are no longer sought and in respect of which the CPO is not to be exercised include:
Plots excluded - 8, 32, 59, 60, 61, 69, 70, 71, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 83 (part), 84, 86 (part), 88, 88a, 92 (part)
Rights excluded - 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 105, 106, 107, 108, 110 (part), 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 117, 124, 127, 129, 130, 131, 132, 133, 134, 137
If your property is affected by the CPO
Owners, lessees, tenants, occupiers and others who can demonstrate that they have a legal interest or interests in the land subject of notice to treat or a general vesting declaration may claim compensation from the council. If compensation cannot be agreed, claims can be referred to the Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber) for determination.
It is advisable that you obtain your own independent advice e.g. from the Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB), and independent legal and valuation advice, as well as research the CPO procedure so that you understand your rights in terms of negotiating a price for your property and the compensation process. General advice is available by visiting the DCLG website.
For further information on the CPO Process
This page was last updated on 31/01/2013