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Greenfield Sites

Volume 409: debated on Friday 18 July 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment she has made of the implications for the Government's direction that brownfield or derelict land assets be used as a priority before greenfield sites of the High Court judgement by Mr. Justice Sullivan on 8July on the case brought by Laing Homes over a site near High Wycombe. [126732]

The judgment in R (Laing Homes Ltd.) v Buckinghamshire County Council & the Secretary of State for the Environment Food & Rural Affairs (third party) (2003) concluded that village green rights could not be established in the particular circumstances of that case, because the land to be registered had been used to cultivate, and harvest, an annual hay crop.The specific controls over development on village greens are separate from planning controls. Planning consent is required before land can be developed for housing. It remains Government policy that local planning authorities should provide sufficient housing land but give priority to re using previously-developed land within urban areas, bringing empty homes back into use and converting existing buildings, in preference to the development of greenfield sites.