The enforced acquisition of land for public purposes, by statutory authority and on payment of compensation. Authority may be given for a specific acquisition, but public and local authorities have wide powers to acquire any land required for particular functions, such as education. These powers are normally exercised under the Acquisition of Land Act 1981, and compensation is assessed under the Land Compensation Acts 1961 and 1973. A compulsory purchase order is submitted for confirmation to the appropriate government minister, whose decision is preceded by an inquiry into public objections. In most cases the procedure includes the service of a notice to treat on the landowner, who then negotiates compensation. Any dispute about compensation is decided by the Lands Tribunal. See also special procedure orders.