This apprenticeship standard has been approved for delivery by the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education. However, starts on the apprenticeship will only be possible once a suitable end-point assessment organisation (EPAO) has obtained Ofqual recognition. Once the EPAO has obtained Ofqual recognition, funding for apprentice starts will be permitted and this message will be removed.

Overview of the role

Provide supporting evidence, documentation and information for an acquiring authority to obtain land for the purposes of large development or infrastructure projects.

Details of standard

Occupation summary

This occupation is found in a range of sectors including transport (aviation, rail, highways), utilities, housing, redevelopment, retail, environmental protection, commercial, private and public sectors. The broad purpose of the occupation is to support land referencing exercises. The main reason for carrying out a land referencing exercise is to provide supporting evidence, documentation and information for an acquiring authority to obtain land for the purposes of large development or infrastructure projects such as airport expansion, railway construction and large shopping centres.

Legal interests in land are held by individuals or organisations. Land referencing is the process of identifying these individuals and organisations and the nature of their legal interest in the affected land, at both design stage and subsequently to support the process of compulsory purchase. This is achieved through the interpretation of Land Registry documents, desktop research and liaising with landowners and their agents. The Land Referencer would be responsible for capturing this information in a visual format, creating plans using a geographic information system (GIS) to illustrate the land ownership for a particular scheme.

Land is essential to the successful delivery of all infrastructure and regeneration projects such as High Speed Two, Crossrail, Hinkley Point nuclear, Heathrow Expansion, Birmingham Bull Ring and Bluewater. These schemes are designed and/or promoted by central government, local authorities, and developers, to secure (a) the legal consent for the construction of the scheme (b) the necessary powers of compulsory acquisition.

Towards the end of a project, the Land Referencer will be responsible for the production of legal notices to be distributed to affected landowners.

In their daily work, an employee in this occupation interacts with their immediate project delivery team; internal and external clients; the client’s independent land advisors and legal representatives; land agents, solicitors and land valuers; other related professions such as geospatial and data managers, ecologists and design teams; government organisations and public bodies. Land Referencers are predominantly office-based but there is often a requirement to conduct site visits for the purposes of identifying the occupiers of affected land, posting and removal of site notices, site surveys to ensure all its features have been accurately recorded and to negotiate with landowners to secure land access for a client.

An employee in this occupation will be responsible for working collaboratively within their project team, reporting directly to a team leader, to deliver high-quality land ownership information to clients..

Typical job titles include:

Assistant land consultant Land consultant Land referencer Land referencing technician

Occupation duties

Duty KSBs

Duty 1 Conduct desk-based research in preparation for an infrastructure project in order to determine those with a legal interest in affected land, to establish an accurate representation of the land ownership within the area of interest.

K2 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K11 K15

S1 S2 S3 S4 S7

B2 B3

Duty 2 Verify land attributes, features and uses of land on site, to ensure accuracy and consistency with desk-based research.

K2 K5 K6 K7 K9 K12 K15

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 S9

B1 B2 B3 B4

Duty 3 Conduct reasonable enquiries via phone, email and/or in person to confirm land ownership and occupational interests with individuals and companies believed to have an interest in the land.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K8 K9 K11 K12 K15 K16

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 S9 S10

B1 B2 B4

Duty 4 Conduct site visits to negotiate with landowners to secure land access and to post/remove site notices.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K8 K9 K10 K11 K12 K15 K16

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S9 S10

B1 B2 B4

Duty 5 Create plans illustrating land ownership, and accompanying schedules detailing any party with an interest in the land, as found from the land referencing tasks.

K2 K6 K7 K13 K14

S3 S4 S7

B1 B2 B3

Duty 6 Follow up enquiries via phone/site visit, encouraging parties to sign access licences and respond to any concerns they may have.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K8 K9 K11 K12 K15 K16

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S7 S9 S10

B1 B2 B4

Duty 7 Assist with processing, investigating and resolving any correspondence which has been returned to sender.

K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K9 K12

S1 S2 S3 S4 S10

B1 B2 B3

Duty 8 Engage with a range of stakeholders involved in the project, including the communities affected by it.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K8 K9 K11 K12

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S7 S10

B1 B2 B3 B4

Duty 9 Produce and distribute legal notices to landowners identified by the land referencing task.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K13 K14 K16

S1 S3 S4 S6 S8 S9 S10

B1 B2 B3 B4

Duty 10 Maintain audit trail to contribute towards the audit trail of the project’s deliverables.

K2 K4 K5 K6 K7 K9 K12 K14 K15 K16

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S8 S9

B1 B2 B3



K1: Health, safety and well-being legislation. Company policy, practice and reporting methods. Back to Duty

K2: The elements of a typical land referencing project including structure, lifecycle, hierarchy, contact and non-contact referencing. The range of typical projects where land referencing is applied and the risks posed to a typical land referencing project (e.g. ransom strips, un-notified interested parties). Back to Duty

K3: The various stakeholders in a land referencing project. The importance of consultation and the purpose of public engagement. Landowner liaison processes, consideration of attitudes and behaviours. Managing conflict when engaging with project stakeholders. Back to Duty

K4: UK consent methods and instruments. Back to Duty

K5: Diligent enquiry: the definition of, processes required to satisfy and the consequences of non-compliance. Back to Duty

K6: The range of information sources, including paper and digital map data, and how this is procured to support land referencing exercises. Quality control standards and methodology. The unknown owner process. Back to Duty

K7: Digital tools used to inspect and report information. The forms of acquiring and recording information from project stakeholders. Back to Duty

K8: Types of public rights of way, identifying public and private rights of way, their boundaries and methods of identifying beneficiaries of private rights of way. Back to Duty

K9: Processes involved with identifying and requesting information from major landowners and statutory undertakers. The registration of ownership in land and consequences of unregistered land. Interests and land/property and the hierarchy of interests. Balancing and validating conflicting data sources. Back to Duty

K10: Agreeing access to land for surveys. Options and processes for gaining access to land through agreement, negotiation of licences or statutory notification. Back to Duty

K11: Agricultural practices, uses and interests in land, land classification, rural conditions, impacts of surveys and projects on agricultural land. Back to Duty

K12: Contact referencing and the methods that a land referencer would use to make contact with stakeholders before, during and post-site work. Back to Duty

K13: The process behind the production of land plans, order plans and bill plans including processes and options for setting up templates and working with the GIS team to produce plans. Requirements for land consultation checking of plans and ensuring consistency with other deliverables. Back to Duty

K14: Documents forming an application or bill such as book of reference, land plans and ownership schedules. Standards for writing plot descriptions for a book of reference. Back to Duty

K15: The definition, significance, identification and recording of special category land and crown land. Back to Duty

K16: The process of site notice planning, production, erection, maintenance and proof of service. Back to Duty


S1: Identify relevant legislation and the appropriate data extraction required to satisfy the requirements of the chosen consent method. Ensure compliance with relevant health, safety and well-being legislation, company policy and practice. Process personal information in a secure manner. Back to Duty

S2: Interpret information from multiple sources, including paper and digital, relaying in a coherent and clear format. Identify proprietors, types of tenure and rights over land, current beneficiaries and successors and unknown interests in land. Back to Duty

S3: Record information accurately and comprehensively, providing a full auditable trail of evidence. Use a Geographic Information System (GIS) for data processing and analysis, areas measurement and plan production. Back to Duty

S4: Maintain accurate records in accordance with company procedures. Back to Duty

S5: Build professional landowner and stakeholder relationships to enable effective enquiry, influence and negotiation. Prepare for, conduct and follow up stakeholder meetings and record minutes. Back to Duty

S6: Plan site visits to enable the required data collection. Back to Duty

S7: Analyse land features and how they impact or inform legal interest in the land. Back to Duty

S8: Serve notices, evidencing that they have been successfully served in accordance with relevant legislation. Back to Duty

S9: Monitor site notices and provide a prompt response to returned notices or queries from affected parties. Back to Duty

S10: Communication with a range of stakeholders via numerous methods including phone, email and in person. Back to Duty


B1: Adopt a professional approach to work, respect confidentiality and work collaboratively across multiple disciplines. Back to Duty

B2: Demonstrate an attention to detail when solving problems, taking into consideration people, places and environments and the relationship between them. Back to Duty

B3: Work independently, self-manage and prioritise work and own professional development. Back to Duty

B4: Demonstrate a commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion. Back to Duty


English and Maths

Apprentices without level 2 English and maths will need to achieve this level prior to taking the End-Point Assessment. For those with an education, health and care plan or a legacy statement, the apprenticeship’s English and maths minimum requirement is Entry Level 3. A British Sign Language (BSL) qualification is an alternative to the English qualification for those whose primary language is BSL.

Additional details

Occupational Level:


Duration (months):



This apprenticeship standard will be reviewed after three years

Status: Approved for delivery
Level: 4
Reference: ST0877
Version: 1.0
Date updated: 22/12/2020
Approved for delivery: 16 December 2020
Route: Construction and the built environment
Typical duration to gateway: 30 months (this does not include EPA period)
Maximum funding: £14000
LARS Code: 612

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Contact us about this apprenticeship

Employers involved in creating the standard: WSP, Terra Quest, Carter Jonas, Ardent Management, Dalcour McLaren, Ish, Arcadis, Land Referencing, Arup, Valuation Office Agency, Mott MacDonald

Version log

Version Change detail Earliest start date Latest start date Latest end date
1.0 Approved for delivery 16/12/2020 Not set Not set

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