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Water Resources Act 1991

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67 Ecclesiastical property.E+W

(1)Where the relevant land belongs to a benefice—

(a)an application for a licence under this Chapter may be made by the Church Commissioners if the benefice is for the time being vacant; and

(b)any reference in this Chapter to the applicant for a licence shall be construed—

(i)in relation to any time when the benefice in question is vacant, as a reference to the Church Commissioners; and

(ii)in relation to any time when there is an incumbent of the benefice, as a reference to that incumbent.

(2)Where the relevant land belongs to a benefice, any licence under this Chapter shall provide that (notwithstanding anything in the preceding provisions of this Chapter) whoever is for the time being the incumbent of the benefice shall be the holder of the licence.

(3)Where a licence under this Chapter provides as mentioned in subsection (2) above—

(a)the licence shall not be required to specify the person to whom the licence is granted; and

(b)the licence shall be deemed to be held by the Church Commissioners at any time when the benefice in question is vacant.

(4)So much of any compensation falling to be paid under this Chapter as is payable—

(a)in respect of damage to land which is ecclesiastical property and to the owner of the fee simple in the land; or

(b)in respect of depreciation of the value of the fee simple in land which is ecclesiastical property,

shall be paid (where the fee simple is vested in any person other than the Church Commissioners) to them, instead of to the person in whom the fee simple is vested.

(5)Any sums paid under subsection (4) above to the Church Commissioners with reference to any land shall—

(a)if the land is not consecrated, be applied by them for the purposes for which the proceeds of a sale by agreement of the fee simple in the land would be applicable under any enactment or Measure authorising such a sale or disposing of the proceeds of such a sale; and

(b)if the land is consecrated, be applied by them in such manner as they may determine.

(6)Where—

(a)the Church Commissioners are required, by virtue of subsection (3)(b) above, to pay any fee or other charge in respect of a licence under this Chapter; and

(b)any moneys are then payable by the Commissioners to the incumbent of the benefice in question or subsequently become so payable,

the Commissioners shall be entitled to retain out of those moneys an amount not exceeding the amount of that fee or other charge.

(7)Where under any provision of this Chapter a document is required to be served on an owner of land and the land is ecclesiastical property, a copy of the document shall be served on the Church Commissioners.

(8)In this section —

  • benefice” means an ecclesiastical benefice of the Church of England;

  • ecclesiastical property” means land which—

    (a)

    belongs to a benefice;

    (b)

    is or forms part of a church subject to the jurisdiction of the bishop of any diocese of the Church of England or the site of a church so subject; or

    (c)

    is or forms part of a burial ground so subject;

    and

  • the relevant land”, in relation to a licence under this Chapter or an application for such a licence, means—

    (a)

    the land on which water abstracted in pursuance of the licence is to be, or is proposed to be, used; or

    (b)

    in the case of a licence for the purposes of section 25 above or an application for such a licence—

    (i)

    the land on which any part of the impounding works is to be, or is proposed to be, constructed; or

    (ii)

    in relation to an alteration of impounding works, the land on which any part of those works is situated or is to be, or is proposed to be, situated.

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