Lone woman will not sell up to make way for Tesco

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Enid Jones

Enid Jones, a 58-year-old from Glyndwr Road in Aberystwyth in West Wales, has taken a stand against a new commercial development - including a Tesco store. While 11 of her neighbours have sold up to allow their homes to be demolished, she is flatly refusing.

But why, and does the developer have the right to force a sale?

The development

Tesco is one of a number of stores that is set to move into a new retail park - alongside Marks & Spencer. They have signed a deal with developers, and have been granted permission from the council. The development is expected to create vital jobs for the town.

According to the BBC, the plans were well in train early last summer, but hit a roadblock when some residents decided they did not want to move out. At that point there were three householders who were keen to stay - now the only one remaining is Jones. There is every chance that the council will use a compulsory purchase order to buy the property.

Jones told the Daily Mail that her refusal is purely down to the fact she likes her home and doesn't want to live anywhere else. The developers have offered to build her a new property elsewhere, but she isn't interested. She told the newspapers that she plans to fight to the end.

Will she have to move?

It seems likely at this stage that the order would be the next step - although negotiations remain a possibility.

If the legal route is taken, the way that the orders work is that the development must be for the greater good rather than for private gain - often the jobs created by a new shopping centre are considered a good enough reason. They are required to pay market value - plus a small sum to compensate for the disruption.

There have been instances where the homeowner won out. Famously in Country Londonderry, a 78-year-old battled with developers until the developers themselves decided to pull out. There was also a man who stood his ground when developers were building the Westway in central London in the 1960s, and they were forced to build it around his property after he refused to budge.

Of course, winning doesn't always feel so good. It's hard to imagine that having a six lane highway built around his property did much for his house price - or his quality of life.

But what would you do? Would you sell up or stand firm? Let us know in the comments.

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