Agriculture Act 1958 (c. 71)
1958 c. 71 - continued

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    An Act to amend the Agriculture Act, 1947, the Agricultural Holdings Act, 1948, the Agriculture (Scotland) Act, 1948, and the Agricultural Holdings (Scotland) Act, 1949; to require the landlord of an agricultural holding in certain cases to provide, repair or alter fixed equipment on the holding; to amend Part II of the Landlord and Tenant Act, 1954, as to tenancies of agricultural land excluded therefrom; to amend the Schedule to the Corn Production Acts (Repeal) Act, 1921, and section twenty-one of the Hill Farming Act, 1946; and for purposes connected with the matters aforesaid.
  [1st August 1958]



    Be it enacted by the Queen's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:—
 

Repeal of powers of supervision, direction and dispossession under Part II of Agriculture Act, 1947, and Part II of Agriculture (Scotland) Act, 1948.

        1.(1)  So much of Part II of the Agriculture Act, 1947 (in this Act referred to as "the Act of 1947") as provides for supervision orders, and for the giving of directions to and the dispossession of owners or occupiers on grounds of bad estate management or bad husbandry, that is to say sections twelve to twenty of that Act, shall cease to have effect, and all entries in the register of local land charges relating to supervision orders shall, as soon as may be after the passing of this Act, be deleted.

    (2)  So much of Part II of the Agriculture (Scotland) Act, 1948 (in this Act referred to as "the Scottish Act of 1948") as provides for warning notices, and for the giving of directions to and the dispossession of owners or occupiers on grounds of bad estate management or bad husbandry, that is to say sections twenty-seven to thirty-four of that Act, shall cease to have effect.


Amendments as to fixing of rents of agricultural holdings.

        2.     In section eight of the Agricultural Holdings Act, 1948 (in this Act referred to as "the Act of 1948") and in section seven of the Agricultural Holdings (Scotland) Act, 1949 (in this Act referred to as "the Scottish Act of 1949"), the following paragraph shall be inserted at the end of subsection (1) (which enables the landlord or tenant of an agricultural holding to demand a reference to arbitration of the question what rent should be payable in respect of the holding)—
     " For the purposes of this subsection the rent properly payable in respect of a holding shall be the rent at which, having regard to the terms of the tenancy (other than those relating to rent), the holding might reasonably be expected to be let in the open market by a willing landlord to a willing tenant, there being disregarded (in addition, to the matters referred to in the next following subsection) any effect on rent of the fact that the tenant who is a party to the arbitration is in occupation of the holding."


Amendments as to notices to quit agricultural holdings.


        3.—(1) There shall be transferred to the Agricultural Land Tribunal the functions conferred on the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (in this Act referred to as "the Minister") by sections twenty-four and twenty-five of the Act of 1948 (which provide for the giving or withholding by the Minister of consent to the operation of notices to quit agricultural holdings) and by section twenty-seven thereof (which relates to the grant by the Minister of certificates of bad husbandry for the purposes of notices to quit).

    (2)  The following subsection shall be substituted for subsection (1) of section twenty-five of the Act of 1948 (which requires the Minister to withhold his consent to the operation of a notice to quit an agricultural holding unless he is satisfied as to certain matters)—  

     "(1) The Agricultural Land Tribunal shall consent under the last foregoing section to the operation of a notice to quit an agricultural holding, or part of an agricultural holding if, but only if, they are satisfied as to one or more of the following matters, being a matter or matters specified by the landlord in his application for their consent, that is to say—   

      (a) that the carrying out of the purpose for which the landlord proposes to terminate the tenancy is desirable in the interests of good husbandry as respects the land to which the notice relates, treated as a separate unit; or

      (b) that the carrying out thereof is desirable in the interests of sound management of the estate of which the land to which the notice relates forms part or which that land constitutes; or

      (c) that the carrying out thereof is desirable for the purposes of agricultural research, education, experi ment or demonstration, or for the purposes of the enactments relating to smallholdings or allotments; or 

      (d) that greater hardship would be caused by withholding than by giving consent to the operation of the notice; or

      (e) that the landlord proposes to terminate the tenancy for the purpose of the land's being used for a use, other than for agriculture, not falling within paragraph (b) of subsection (2) of the last foregoing section:

      Provided that, notwithstanding that they are satisfied as aforesaid, the Tribunal shall withhold consent to the operation of the notice to quit if in all the circumstances it appears to them that a fair and reasonable landlord would not insist on possession."

    (3)  The foregoing provisions of this section shall apply to Scotland subject to the following modifications, that is to say—

    (a)  for references to the Minister and to the Agricultural Land Tribunal there shall be substituted respectively references to the Secretary of State and to the Land Court ; 

    (b)  for references to sections twenty-four, twenty-five and twenty-seven of the Act of 1948 there shall be substituted respectively references to sections twenty-five, twenty-six and twenty-eight of the Scottish Act of 1949; and

    (c)  in the subsection substituted for subsection (1) of section twenty-six of the Scottish Act of 1949, in paragraph (c) after the word "smallholdings" there shall be inserted the words "or such holdings as are mentioned in section sixty-four of the Agriculture (Scotland) Act, 1948", and in paragraph (e) for the words "paragraph (b)" there shall be substituted the words "paragraph (c)".

    (4)  This section shall come into operation on the appointed day.


Rights of tenants as to provision of fixed equipment necessary to comply with statutory requirements.


        4.—(1) Where, on an application by the tenant of an agricultural holding, the Agricultural Land Tribunal are satisfied that it is reasonable, having regard to the tenant's responsibilities to farm the holding in accordance with the rules of good husbandry, that he should carry on on the holding an agricultural activity specified in the application to the extent and in the manner specified therein and—

     (a)  that, unless fixed equipment is provided on the holding, the tenant, in carrying on that activity to that extent and in that manner, will contravene requirements imposed by or under any enactment, or
     (b)  that it is reasonable that the tenant should use, for purposes connected with that activity, fixed equipment already provided on the holding, but that, unless that equipment is altered or repaired, the tenant, in using the equipment for those purposes, will contravene requirements imposed by or under any enactment,

the Tribunal may, subject to the provisions of this section, direct the landlord to carry out, within a period specified in the direction, such work for the provision or, as the case may be, the alteration or repair of that fixed equipment as will enable the tenant to comply with the said requirements:

Provided that where it appears to the Tribunal that an agricultural activity specified in the tenant's application has not been carried on on the holding for a period of at least three years immediately preceding the making of the application the Tribunal shall not direct the landlord to carry out work in connection with that activity unless they are satisfied that the starting of the activity did not or, where the activity has not yet been started, will not constitute or form part of a substantial alteration of the type of farming carried on on the holding.    

    (2)  The Tribunal shall not direct the landlord to carry out work under the foregoing subsection unless they are satisfied—

     (a)  that it is reasonable so to do having regard to the landlord's responsibilities to manage the land comprised in the holding in accordance with the rules of good estate management and also to the period for which the holding may be expected to remain a separate holding and to any other material consideration, and
     (b)  that the landlord has refused to carry out that work on being requested in writing so to do by the tenant or has not agreed to carry it out within a reasonable time after being so requested;

and shall not in any case direct the landlord to carry out work thereunder if provision is made by the contract of tenancy, or by any other agreement between the landlord and the tenant, for the carrying out of the work by the landlord or by the tenant, or if the landlord is under a duty to carry out the work in order to comply with a requirement imposed on him by or under any enactment.

    (3)  If the landlord fails to comply with a direction under subsection (1) of this section the tenant shall have the same remedies as if the contract of tenancy had contained an undertaking by the landlord to carry out the work required by the direction within the period allowed by the Tribunal and, notwithstanding any term in the contract of tenancy restricting the carrying put by the tenant of alterations to the holding, those remedies shall include the right of the tenant to carry out the work himself and recover from the landlord the reasonable cost thereof.

    (4)  The Tribunal, on an application by the landlord, may extend or further extend the period specified in a direction under subsection (1) of this section if it is shown to their satisfaction that the period so specified, or that period as previously extended under this subsection, as the case may be, will not allow sufficient time both for the completion of preliminary arrangements necessary or desirable in connection with the work required by the direction (including, in appropriate cases, the determination of an application by the landlord for a grant out of moneys provided by Parliament in respect of that work) and for the carrying out of the said work.

    (5)  Section nine of the Act of 1948 (which provides for increases of rent where certain improvements are carried out by the landlord) shall have effect as if the reference in subsection (1) thereof to improvements carried out at the request of the tenant included a reference to improvements carried out in compliance with a direction given by the Tribunal under subsection (1) of this section; and where, on the failure of the landlord to comply with a direction so given by the Tribunal, the tenant has himself carried out the work specified in the direction, the said section nine shall apply as if the work had been carried out by the landlord and as if any grant made to the tenant in respect thereof out of moneys provided by Parliament had been made to the landlord:

Provided that no increase in rent shall take effect under the said section nine where the tenant has carried out an improvement under this section until such time as the tenant has recovered from the landlord the reasonable cost thereof.

    (6)  Where, on the application of the sub-tenant of an agricultural holding, the Tribunal have directed the immediate landlord of the sub-tenant to carry out work under subsection (1) of this section, being work which constitutes an improvement such as is specified in the Third Schedule to the Act of 1948,—

     (a)  section forty-nine of the Act of 1948 (which provides that a tenant shall not be entitled under section forty-seven of that Act to compensation for an improvement such as is specified in the Third Schedule thereto unless his landlord has consented to the carrying out of the improvement) shall not apply as respects a claim by the immediate landlord against his superior landlord for compensation in respect of that work, and
     (b)  if, on the failure of the immediate landlord to comply with the direction of the Tribunal, the sub-tenant has himself carried out the work, section forty-seven of the Act of 1948 shall have effect for the purposes of a claim for compensation by the immediate landlord against his superior landlord as if the work had been carried out by the immediate landlord.

    (7)  References in this section to the reasonable cost of work carried out by a tenant shall, where the tenant has received a grant in respect thereof out of moneys provided by Parliament, be construed as references to the reasonable cost reduced by the amount of the grant.

    (8)  Sections ten and eleven of the Act of 1947 (which specify the circumstances in which an owner of agricultural land is deemed for the purposes of that Act to fulfil his responsibilities to manage the land in accordance with the rules of good estate management and an occupier of such land is deemed for those purposes to fulfil his responsibilities to farm it in accordance with the rules of good husbandry) shall apply for the purposes of this section.

    (9)  This section shall come into operation on the appointed day.

    (10)  This section shall not apply to Scotland .

 
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