Council seizes derelict properties

By Ian Dipple Thursday 24 April 2014 Updated: 25/04 08:55

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RARELY used powers have been invoked by borough council bosses to tackle two derelict buildings blighting communities.

Redditch Borough Council has used The Compulsory Purchase Act 1965 to buy properties on Clent Avenue in Headless Cross and Felton Close in Matchborough following years of complaints about the dilapidated state they were in.

Both properties have been empty for a number of years and have been allowed to fall into a severe state of disrepair with growing concern about the safety of the public due to their poor condition.

Council officers carried out extensive negotiations with the owners of the properties but in the end were backed by the council's decision-making executive committee in seeking confirmation from Local

Government Secretary Eric Pickles they could forcibly seize the properties.

The building in Clent Avenue was sold on Tuesday (April 22) on the open market and the buyer has been 12 months to put right outstanding problems. The Felton Close property was seized by the council on April 17 and will be renovated before becoming part of the authority's 6,000 plus social homes for rent.

The original owners of both properties have been compensated as part of the move.

Sue Hanley, the council's deputy chief executive, said: "The borough council actively supports the full and appropriate use of all properties in Redditch, as well as working to solve the problems longstanding derelict properties can cause for local communities.

"The CPO is very much a last resort in these circumstances but both of these properties can now have a useful future."

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