News

Farmer's Widow Who Lost Land to Bypass Due Big Payout

A farmer’s widow whose land was compulsorily purchased to make way for a bypass is in line for a substantial compensation payout after a tribunal ruled that the site had valuable planning potential as a landfill or land reclamation site.

The woman’s husband had owned two parcels of land alongside a disused railway cutting which the couple had also farmed by agreement. The total site measured around three acres and all of it was compulsorily acquired by the local authority for road building purposes.

She applied for a certificate of appropriate alternative development (CAAD) on the basis that, but for the bypass scheme, the site would have been suitable for landfill or reclamation use. The local authority, however, declined her request, saying that such use would have been precluded as unjustified development which would harm the character and appearance of the rural area.

In overturning that decision, the Upper Tribunal (UT) found that the proposed use would not have conflicted with countryside protection policies and would have been acceptable in planning terms. The UT’s direction that the widow should be issued with a CAAD greatly increased the level of compensation due to her.