An object lesson in how not to promote a CPO
Peter Village QC and Jonathan Darby, instructed by Winckworth Sherwood partner Colette McCormack and acting on behalf of the Arvin Group of Companies, have succeeded in persuading the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government not to confirm the Blackwall Reach CPO as it relates to their clients’ site within the Blackwall Reach CPO and to delete all of Phase 4 of the proposed development. The consequence is that the CPO has only been confirmed in relation to phases 1a, 1b, 2 and 3. They are now instructed to seek the recovery of Arvin’s costs of the 15 day public inquiry from the London Borough of Tower Hamlets.
In a decision dated 20 August 2015, the Secretary of State accepted that a CPO should only be used as a “last resort” in the event that attempts to acquire by agreement fail. The Secretary of State accepted that due to the failure of negotiations and the failure to consider alternatives until after the inquiry had opened, the point of “last resort” had not been reached.
Peter Village QC commented: “This is a resounding success for the Arvin Group and I am personally delighted that what can only be described as a hamfisted attempt to acquire by compulsion the key hub of this highly successful business, which employs dozens of local people, has been decisively rejected. The decision is an object lesson for local authorities in how not to promote a CPO.”