Land News

Previously-Developed Land that may be available for Development in 2003: Supplementary Report

Results from the National Land Use Database of Previously Developed Land (NLUD-PDL) for 2003 were published in August 2004. The statistical release mentioned that additional results would be included in a further statistical release in autumn 2004. This release now shows results on the ownership of previously-developed land, on its location in a built-up or non-built-up area, and on rates of development and supply of new brownfield land.


  • Fifty-five per cent of previously-developed (brownfield) land is known to be privately
    owned, 18 per cent is owned by public sector bodies other than local authorities and 10 per
    cent by local authorities. (Ownership of the remaining 16 per cent was not recorded.)
  • In the North East 26 per cent of brownfield land is owned by local authorities, while in the
    South East and East of England Regions the proportion was only 4 per cent.


  • Overall 55 five per cent of brownfield land is in a built-up area with a population of 1000
    or more, and a further 27 per cent is within 500 metres of a built-up area.
  • Some 71 per cent of land currently in use with potential for redevelopment is in a built-up
    are but the proportion is only 33 per cent for derelict land and buildings.
  • A third of both vacant land and derelict land and buildings is in the urban fringe, within
    500 metres of a built-up area.
  • Sites outside the built-up or urban fringe areas tend to be the largest, with an average size
    of 7.5 hectares compared with 1.5 hectares in built-up areas.

Land developed between 2002 and 2003

  • Around 13 per cent of the brownfield land recorded in 2002 is thought to have been
    developed by 2003. Vacant buildings were much the most likely to have been developed and
    derelict land and buildings the least likely.
  • Land currently in use in 2002 with planning permission or allocation in a local plan
    contributed 28 per cent of all the brownfield land that had been developed by 2003.

Newly-available brownfield land

  • Newly-available brownfield land amounted to 13 per cent of the total of brownfield land as
    it stood in 2002. For derelict land and buildings the proportion was only 5 per cent of the
    2002 total but for land currently in use with potential for redevelopment the proportion was
    20 to 25 per cent.
  • London and the South East were the two Government Office Regions where newlyavailable brownfield land formed the highest proportion of the 2002 total, 21 per cent in
    each region. Over a quarter of all newly-available brownfield land was in the South East Government Office Region.

Previous and new uses of land that was developed

  • The largest proportion of brownfield land had a previous or current use of industrial or
    commercial, 35 per cent, and the next largest category was transport, minerals and landfill
    and defence land, 26 per cent.
  • Residential use accounted for 60 per cent of the land that was redeveloped between 2002
    and 2003.

To view the full report please visit

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