How do I claim unused Land

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Jacko64 | 15:46 Thu 23rd Nov 2006 | Home & Garden
8 Answers
There is a narrow strip of unused land (10 - 20 feet wide) that runs the length of my property and separates my property from the playground of a primary school. The land is fenced on all sides either by my garden fences or the school fence. I have a gate in my fence giving access to the land that was installed by a previous owner, we believe over 15 years ago. I currently use the land to store some building materials left over from DIY and for my compost bin and have done so for nearly 4 years.

So far I have tried to identify an owner for the land, but land registry searches show the land as unregistered, I have also written to the local diocese who apparently own/fund the school with out receiving an answer.

Does anyone know how I go about claiming the land and getting it registered against my own property?


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How long have you been in the house? If more than 7 years you could say you've been making use of it for all that time, and claim it as yours, like under squatters rights.
The council, as your local registration authority, should have details of ownership, but that wouldn't stop your claim.
Someone correct me if I'm wrong on this.
Heathfield's answer provides a good starting point but the qualifying period is not 7 years. For most unregistered land it's 12 years but for Crown land or some Church land, it's 30 years. (For registered land it's 10 years).

In order for the Land Registry to consider your claim to the title of the land, by adverse possession, four tests must be met:
* the squatter has factual possession of the land;
* the squatter has the necessary intention to possess the land;
* the squatter's possession is without the owner's consent; and
* all the above have been true of the squatter and any predecessors through whom the squatter claims for at least 12 years prior to the date of the application.

That last test might prove the most difficult one to get through. You need to show that you (or the previous occupier(s) of your house have been using the land (rather than simply having access to it) throughout that period.

If you think that you can get through those qualifying tests, I recommend the following:

(i) read this: tm

(ii) download Land Registry Practice Guide 5. (There's a link from that previous site)

(iii) if you still think you've got a valid claim, download Form FR1 (again, there's a link from that first site), complete and get a solicitor to witness the relevant declaration. Then submit it and cross your fingers!

I was in a similar situation a few years ago. I visited They supply all the information you will need.
Its not actually as hard as you may think to claim. I was rewarded legal ownership with no real fuss.
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I found that the best source for info on claiming unregitered land is they helped me out in a big way when I was looking to claim land to keep my horses, and without a difficult and lengthy porcess I now have a field of my own. Just visit their website at
Great advise Mike, I've just been on and found everything I needed. It seems that claiming land isn't as difficult as I expected if you stick to claiming "unregistered land". Anyway, great website, its nice to have all the info in one place...... Media URL:
Description: how to claim free uk land and property
These are obviously scammers, and spammers trying to get you to sign up to some rubbish websites that you pay for, this info is available for free on the web!

hello can anyone help me out i have had this bit of land for 7 years now it has a static caruvan on it iv been cutting the grass and keeping it very nice how do i stand do not live in it but would like to can i claim it can i live in it

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