CLA calls on Ministers to complete Compulsory Purchase reform as HS2 law reaches milestone


18 February 2016

By Keri Constantatou

Ministers must complete reforms to make the compulsory purchase system fairer for rural businesses affected by the HS2 scheme says the CLA, which represents landowners, farmers and rural businesses.

This week the HS2 Select Committee, which has been hearing from those affected by the route and expert organisations including the CLA, concludes its proceedings. The Committee will now produce a report for the House of Commons with a series of recommended changes.

CLA President Ross Murray said: “The CLA has presented a robust case in defence of the rights of our members affected by compulsory purchase by HS2 Ltd. We are confident that our efforts will lead to substantial long term reform to the way the compulsory purchase system works, bringing greater clarity and fairness for landowners.

“I would like to thank the HS2 Select Committee for their time and effort in hearing from hundreds of petitioners including many CLA members.”

Following the CLA’s campaign for fairness for those affected by HS2, Ministers have:

Committed to make clearer the legal provisions for the advance payment of compensation

Committed to change the rates of interest that compulsory purchasers have to pay if they make late payments

Already provided guidance encouraging local authorities to allow landowners to build replacement buildings where they have to relocate all or part of their business because of compulsory purchase.

Mr Murray continued: “We have achieved some significant breakthroughs but these now need to be enacted in law, and more needs to be done. We will continue to argue for fair treatment in the tax system for those seeking to reinvest money received from compulsory purchase. We will also press for MPs to introduce a statutory duty of care, which would oblige HS2 Ltd to treat landowners fairly during the process of compulsory purchase.

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The above is not legal advice; it is intended to provide information of general interest about current legal issues.