In October 2016, HM Government announced that they want to take forward proposals for a third runway at London Heathrow.

To build the new runway, approximately 750 residential properties will need be demolished. Approximately a further 3750 residential property owners nearby will be offered the ability to sell under Compulsory Purchase terms.

Sawyer Fielding are Chartered Surveyors specialising in Compulsory Purchase and will be helping residents affected by the third runway proposals.

Areas affected include Poyle (SL3), Colnbrook (SL3), Brandshill (SL3), Harmondsworth (UB7), Sipson (Ub7), Harlington (UB3) and Cranford Cross (TW5).

Before that point is reached, there are a series of legal hurdles that Heathrow will need to jump over.

National Policy Statement

A National Policy Statement will be created which will provide the basis on which consultation is held. This is the process which will also be discussed in Parliament with a number of MP’s known to be against the Governments official position of being in favour of the third runway.

Judicial Review

A legal challenge known as Judicial Review is likely to follow. This review is not to challenge the merits of the third runway as doing so would be outside of the courts remit. The Judicial Review would be to challenge whether the process created by the National Policy Statement has been followed within the law.

Development Consent Order

Once this is completed, Compulsory Purchase powers would be applied for. There are various ways for this application to be made. For example High Speed 2 is being applied for under a Hybrid Bill which would grant Compulsory Purchase powers. Typically Estate Regeneration schemes such as at West Hendon, Aylesbury Estate and Central Hill have or may receive a Compulsory Purchase Order. Light rail schemes are often promoted through use of a Transport & Works Act Order. All of these ultimately have the aim of securing Compulsory Purchase powers.

The choice of scheme promotion highly likely to be made at Heathrow is a Development Consent Order (DCO). This type of Order, made under the Planning Act 2008 is made for Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects (NSIPs). Quite often it is used for schemes which promote creation of new forms of energy creation such as at Hinkley Point C and windfarms such as Hornsea and Galloper. An Order made under the DCO process will seek to secure Compulsory Purchase powers and planning approval in one process.

Sale of residential properties

The offer that will be made to homeowners affected by the third Runway is comfortably over and over the statutory minimum requirements which are normally offered elsewhere. In that respect, it is an attractive offer which would leave homeowners financially well compensated.

However, what also must be considered is that when dealing with the homeowners, a house or flat is more than a financial investment. It is a home to which sentimental value is attached. The worth to an owner may outstrip the value to the market. As such, negotiations should be held sensitively with home owners treated with the respect that they deserve. Sometimes elsewhere this is the case. Unfortunately, often it is not.

The offer to be made is the unblighted Market Value of a property plus an additional 25% with all reasonable costs of moving and selling also paid by Heathrow. These costs paid by Heathrow would include appointment of Chartered Surveyors with relevant experience in negotiating Compulsory Purchase.

What is blight?

The proposals for a third runway and demolition of homes have been in the public domain for many years prior to the Governments announcement of support for them in October 2016. During these years, it is arguable that values have been suppressed due to the threat of the third runway. This suppression in value is called blight.

Part of our role in representing homeowners is to assess what the property value would be if proposals for a third runway had never been made and assess that at the relevant valuation date.

Why Sawyer Fielding?

We are Chartered Surveyors who specialise in Compulsory Purchase and expect to represent a lot of the owners affected by the third runway at Heathrow.

We have negotiated the sale of more residential properties on behalf of home owners than any other company in the United Kingdom that we are aware of. We like to think we are considered the market leaders in this niche area.

Two of our staff have personal experience of losing their homes to Compulsory Purchase, which also leaves us better positioned to understand the stress of having a home threatened by Compulsory Purchase as well as knowing the technical basis of how deals are negotiated.

Contact us

To find out more about how we could help you if your home is threatened due to the expansion of Heathrow, call us on 020 3011 5300 or e-mail to find out more.