New legislation will affect village green status
21st October 2013
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A local firm of solicitors is reminding residents across the region about changes to legislation which will make it more difficult to protect communal land from development.

Shropshire-based PCB Solicitors is advising individuals to be aware of the changes introduced this month to the Growth and Infrastructure Act which will affect local residents’ ability to register land as a village green.

The new regulations, which came into force on 1st October, will prevent communities from registering land as a village green when development plans have already been submitted. Residents will only be able to make a claim, if the developer’s plans are rejected or planning permission isn’t granted. Land can be registered as a village green if the local community can demonstrate 20 years of its use for recreation, without challenge or permission, and once registered the land is protected against development.

Ellen Roberts, Solicitor at PCB Solicitors, explained: “The new legislations have been introduced by the government after claims that the system had been misused, and individuals were using it to block development. Under the new process, landowners will be able to appeal the use of the land for recreation, and applications for village green status will have to be made within one year of the landowners’ challenge, rather than two as previously the case.

“If local residents want to make a claim for village green status, and it doesn’t necessarily apply to just land in rural communities, any land where a significant number of the residents have used it for lawful sports or pastimes for a period of at least 20 years can make a claim. I suggest that anyone looking to submit plans ensure they satisfy all the requirements and contact their local authority planning department to see if there are any current published planning applications,” concluded Ellen. 

For further information about PCB Solicitors’ complete range of legal services, please contact the Shrewsbury Head office on 01743 248148 or click on the weblink below.

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