HC Deb 10 December 2002 vol 396 c204W
Mrs. Anne Campbell

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what plans he has to compensate homeowners for the loss in value of their homes, should new airports be built. [86165]

Mr. Jamieson

The principal Acts covering compulsory purchase and compensation are the Land Compensation Acts of 1961 and 1973, the Compulsory Purchase Act 1965 and the Acquisition of Land Act 1981.

For people whose property is required to allow for a proposed development, compansation is payable on the basis that they should be no worse off in financial terms after the acquisition that they were before. This means that they receive compensation for the value of their property based on its open market value if there had been no proposal to acquire their property compulsorily plus the reimbursement of any actual costs and losses incurred as a result of having to move.

In addition, both owner-occupiers and tenants who are displaced from their home as a result of a compulsory purchase, and have occupied the property as their main residence for a year or more, will be entitled to a home-loss payment. In the case of tenants this is currently £1,500 while owner-occupiers receive 10 per cent. of the value of their property subject to minimum and maximum thresholds which are currently set at £1,500 and £15,000. However, both the flat rate payable to tenants and the thresholds for owner-occupiers are currently being reviewed, including proposals for increasing the payments above the present £15,000 ceiling. The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister published a consultation document about this on 27 September, inviting comments by 6 January 2003.

People whose property does not need to be demolished may be entitled to compensation to cover depreciation in the value of their land due to physical factors caused by the use of a development, such as noise, smell, smoke and fumes. In this case, compensation for the loss in value would be based upon prices current on the first claim day, which is 12 months after the first use of the public works.

In addition to these rules, the consultation on The Future Development of Air Transport in the South East is seeking views on additional mitigation and compensation measures for people who might suffer noise impacts as a result of an airport development option. These measures are outlined in paragraphs 16.49—16.58 of the main consultation document.