Allowing councils to compulsorily purchase land without paying hope value will undermine farmers, says CLA

CLA President Victoria Vyvyan says that while landowners are willing to support affordable housing, these new measures will not help
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The new measures will remove hope value in certain circumstances where Compulsory Purchase Orders are being used.

The CLA has strongly criticised new measures allowing councils to buy land for development through the use of Compulsory Purchase Orders (CPO) without paying hope value.

The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities has this week announced new reforms that will enable local authorities to buy cheaper land to help build social and affordable homes.

The measures will remove hope value in certain circumstances where CPOs are being used and make it cheaper for councils to build, the department said.

Country Land and Business Association (CLA) President Victoria Vyvyan said:

“More affordable housing is desperately needed, but removing hope value from compulsory purchases is tantamount to asking farmers to bear the cost of fixing a housing crisis they didn't cause.

"I very much doubt that the house builders who will be contracted by councils to do the work will be taking a lower profit, so once again farmers will be the only part of the supply chain to lose out.

“Allowing under-resourced local authorities to force landowners to sell their land without hope value will harm the viability of many farms. Farmers are already hard-pressed, and compulsory purchase of land at a knock-down price, will undermine their business.

“Many CLA members would willingly put forward land for affordable housing development were it not for the expensive, slow and bureaucratic planning system. The relative cost of hope value versus total project costs is not significant enough to increase housing delivery.”