Agenda item

Action to Return a Long-Term Derelict Property into use at 364 High Street, Rochester ME1 1DJ




This report sought Cabinet approval for the acquisition of the former Mak’s Curry Nest at 364 High Street, Rochester ME1 1DJ, through a Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO). It was clarified that the address referenced in the recommendations to the report was incorrect and that the correct address was 364 High Street, Rochester.


The property had been vacant since 2012 and had fallen into significant disrepair. The Council had received a number of complaints relating to the external condition of the property. It was anticipated that use of a CPO would allow the physical appearance of the property to be brought in line with neighbouring properties, thereby increasing the economic and social wellbeing of the area.


The report was accompanied by an exempt Appendix. This set out key information relating to the likely cost of purchasing the property via a CPO and other associated costs.


Decision number:




The Cabinet agreed that the Council make a Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) under the Acquisition of Land Act 1981 and s226(a) of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990, for the acquisition of the 364 High Street, Rochester for the purposes of the provision of housing accommodation with a potential commercial use on the ground floor.



The Cabinet agreed to delegate authority to the Director of Place and Deputy Chief Executive in consultation the Portfolio Holder for Resources to:


i)        Delegate securing of funding for the CPO to officers.


ii)       Take all necessary steps to secure the making, confirmation and implementation of the CPO, including the publication and service of notices and all other associated procedural steps.


iii)     Acquire the Property whether by voluntary agreement or compulsorily using the statutory powers set out in paragraph 9.1.


iv)     Once acquired, dispose of the Property by one of the two options set out in paragraph 3.3 with appropriate conditions to secure its repair.


v)       Suspend or abandon the CPO proceedings or withdraw an order on being satisfied that the Property will be satisfactorily renovated and re-occupied.


vi)     Take necessary action to deal with all matters relating to the payment of statutory compensation including, where required, instituting or defending proceedings.


vii)   Take all other necessary action to give effect to these recommendations.




The property is one of a number of similar abandoned and derelict buildings across Medway, including properties such as 6 High Street Gillingham which are being assessed and considered by officers in consultation with the Portfolio Holder.


The property has been derelict and empty for over 10 years, its condition has steadily deteriorated and is now proving to be detrimental to the character of the conservation area and neighbourhood as well as being a waste of employment space and residential accommodation in an area with high housing demand.


Officers and external agencies have also been unable to locate the owner.


The property has attracted a number of complaints from local residents and therefore is having a detrimental effect on them, as it is affecting enjoyment of their properties. CPO action will allow the physical appearance of the property to be brought in line with neighbouring properties, thereby increasing the economic and social wellbeing of the area.


Works to enhance the appearance of the property will remove its current blighting effect and improve the local environment for neighbouring properties.  This will also link to further improvements in the area facilitated by HAZ funding.


Re-occupation/ re-use would also reduce the likelihood of the property attracting anti-social behaviour, crime and vandalism. It has already attracted squatters.


The Council considers that the CPO will result in the property being brought back into use. The CPO is necessary and justified as last resort as this benefit could not be achieved by agreement.

Supporting documents: