Skip to main content


Volume 405: debated on Monday 12 May 2003

The text on this page has been created from Hansard archive content, it may contain typographical errors.

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much compensation has been given, and on what dates, by the Highways Agency to Buckmore Park Scout Centre as a consequence of the M2 widening; and if he will make a statement about outstanding claims. [111087]

I have asked the Chief Executive of the Highways Agency, Mr. Tim Matthews, to write to my hon. Friend.

Letter from Tim Matthews to Mr. Jonathan Shaw, dated 7 May 2003:

The Transport Minister, David Jamieson, has asked me to reply to your recent Parliamentary Question regarding the amount of compensation that has been given, and on what dates, by the Highways Agency to Buckmore Park Scout Centre as a consequence of the M2 widening.
You will know from your previous involvement with the M2 Widening scheme that the Buckmore Park Scout Centre was accepted as a Rule 5 Case under the Land Compensation Act. This provides for compensation to meet the costs of reasonable equivalent reinstatement. Exceptionally, to enable work to be undertaken to organise the replacement facilities and get them built ahead of the M2 widening construction, it was agreed that compensation would be released in stages ahead of the normal land entry requirement. The payment of compensation was therefore spread over a period of time commencing in October 1995.
I set out in the attached annex the full schedule of payments made and dates of release. All these payments included the payment of VAT. You will note that the last entry is for statutory interest, providing for the interest on the difference between the sum released at the time of entry and the latest estimate of compensation.
You raise the issue of outstanding claims. At the end of 2001, the Valuation Office Agency (VOA), the independent valuer acting for the Highways Agency, had discussed with the scouts valuer, all the heads of claim and had reached a point where a full and final offer could be made. However, because there was some question as to whether the VAT element could be recovered by the scouts, and therefore not form part of the cost of reinstatement, the full and final offer made was presented without prejudice to the outcome of the VAT enquiry.
The full and final offer, in the sum of £10,100,000 (including VAT) was made on 4 December 2001 and apparently accepted by the valuer for the scouts but his recommendation to accept was rejected by his client.
The dispute over the VAT element eventually led to the scouts making a reference to the Lands Tribunal on 15 April 2002. At that time the solicitor for the scouts raised a claim for compensation on a number of additional items. These were not specified in any way and to date the scouts have not responded to our request for this to be done.
The Highways Agency has therefore paid in full all the compensation recommended by the VOA up to the full and final offer that was rejected. Subject to the scouts justifying their claim for additional items there are no outstanding sums.
I hope that this answers your queries. The Project Sponsor for the M2 scheme is Colin Chadwick. He would be happy to discuss this issue in greater detail if you wish. He can be contacted at Room C8, 5 Broadway, Broad Street, Birmingham, B15 1BL—telephone 0121 6788281.


Date paid



Cumulative (£)

16-04-199615,143.11Design fees85,924.17
15-05-19968,750.00Design fees94,674.17
28-01-199759,511.50Design fees154,185.67
05-03-199729,819.00Design fees184,004.67
11-03-199726,590.25Fees & preparation210,594.92
09-05-199720,715.25Design fees231,310.17
27-10-19977,470.26Design fees238,780.43
16-02-1998101,590.25Design fees & bank charges444,642.09
17-04-199843,850.76Design fees525,531.80
22-09-199850,525.01Design fees578,489.06
18-06-19997,843.13Design Fee3,508,455.00
23-07-1999677,768.94Works &. Buffer4,290,211.44
28-08-200116,634.02Seeboard invoice9,866,634.12