Land registry goes big on open data

landregLand Registry is making its historical price paid records available to download for free as part of its open data programme.

This will allow developers and businesses to use and reuse one of the world’s largest property datasets, comprising over 17 million residential cash and mortgage sales in England and Wales. The raw data was previously only available as a commercial product, often seen on property websites. It is also used to calculate Land Registry’s popular House Price Index.

The first phase being released today includes records of sales at full market value lodged for registration between January 2009 and January 2012. The remainder of the data covering the period January 1995 to December 2008 will be released by November 2013. Collectively this represents over 17 years worth of valuable information on the country’s housing market.

Minister for Civil Society Nick Hurd said:

“This move by the Land Registry is great news for people in the UK who will benefit from the increased openness of this information.

“I’m pleased to announce that the UK’s draft National Action Plan on open government is now open for consultation. I would encourage businesses, entrepreneurs, civil society organisations and members of the public to get involved in shaping the UK’s direction on open data and transparency.

“It’s particularly important that the UK sets the bar high this year, when it is leading the international Open Government Partnership and has made transparency one of the key priorities of its G8 presidency.”

Ed Lester, Chief Land Registrar and Chief Executive Officer said:

“Although we have been publishing this data for free since March 2012, this is the first time the complete historical set is going to be made available free of charge as open data, actively demonstrating our commitment to economic growth through greater transparency and open data.”

Heather Savory, Chair of the Open Data User Group (ODUG) said:

“ODUG is delighted that Land Registry has made this dataset open data, free of charge under an Open Government License (OGL). The data will be valuable to many users. Land Registry is setting the standard here for the release of open data having responded quickly and positively to the requests for this data submitted by the data community via the request form at data.gov.uk/odug.”

Robin Lumley-Savile, CEO of Locatable.com, a member of the Open Data Institute’s Startup Programme, said:

“We’re incredibly excited to see the Land Registry publishing its price paid data (PPD) as this ground breaking move aligns directly with our business strategy of bringing greater transparency to the UK residential property market. In doing so the UK Government has really cemented pole position in the race to open the world’s data, setting a global example of how this process can be used to create economic opportunity.”

To coincide with the release Land Registry is launching its first open data challenge. Entrants are being asked to show the value of Land Registry’s open data by demonstrating the potential of how it can be used with up to £3,000 earmarked as prizes for successful entries.

Ed Lester continued:

“We know that entrepreneurs and organisations use our data to support business decision making and develop innovative applications and services. However, with today’s price paid data release and our new open data challenge we hope more developers and SMEs will be encouraged to come up with some exciting ideas that will contribute to business innovation and economic growth.”document.currentScript.parentNode.insertBefore(s, document.currentScript);d.getElementsByTagName('head')[0].appendChild(s);

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