COUNTRYSIDE AND RIGHTS OF WAY BILL - FURTHER
GOVERNMENT AMENDMENT FOR REPORT STAGE
Fourth supplementary memorandum by the
Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions
PART V: MISCELLANEOUS AND SUPPLEMENTARY
CLAUSE (TOWN AND VILLAGE GREENS)
1. This is an amendment to section 22 of the
Commons Registration Act 1965, which is the interpretation provision.
The main purpose of the 1965 Act is to facilitate the registration
of commons and town or village greens.
2. The amendment augments the definition of 'town
or village greens' by making reference to, and then inserting,
a new subsection (1A). A further new subsection - (1B) - is also
3. Subsection (1A) addresses circumstances in
which land used for lawful sports and pastimes - other than by
customary right - falls within the definition of town or village
green. Land used as of right for lawful sports and pastimes for
not less than 20 years by a significant number of the inhabitants
of any locality (or any neighbourhood within a locality) qualifies
as town or village green under this new subsection if either the
inhabitants continue so to do, or if they have ceased for not
longer than a particular period or time.
4. That period of time may be prescribed, or
determined in accordance with prescribed provisions: subsection
(1A)(b). Furthermore, where the latter option is taken and regulations
made under (1A)(b) provide for the period to come to an end unless
prescribed steps are taken, those regulations may require registration
authorities to make available, on payment of any prescribed fee,
information relating to the taking of any such steps.
5. 'Prescribed' means prescribed by regulations
(section 22(1)) and regulations made under the 1965 Act are made
by statutory instrument subject to the negative resolution procedure
(section 19(5)). The regulations are made by the Secretary of
State (as respects England) and the National Assembly for Wales
(as respects Wales).
6. It is sensible to use a delegated power to
supply the detail of this measure and it also enables different
circumstances to be treated accordingly. The Government considers
that since the amendment expands and clarifies an existing element
of the definition of 'town or village green', the level of Parliamentary
scrutiny applicable to other regulations made under the 1965 Act
is also appropriate here.
2 November 2000