News & Opportunities

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Community Ownership and Management of Assets - Capital Grants Now Open

Capital grants are now available to organisations ready to take the next step in acquiring a local asset under the Community Right to Challenge and Community Ownership and Management of Assets Support Programmes.

Grants of between £100,000 and £500,000 are available to community interest groups with well-evidenced local connections, established for charitable, benevolent or philanthropic purposes or a Parish or Town Council.

Applicants will need to meet at least one of 2014 themes:

  • Community Assets – Under the Hammer: Capital grants to facilitate competitive bidding for land and buildings to make use of the Right to Bid. If applying under this theme groups will need to have registered the building or land as an asset of community value and be actively looking to use the Right to Bid.
  • Community Share Matching: Capital grants to match-fund monies solicited direct from communities through community share issues where initiatives involve the acquisition, development or refurbishment of land or buildings. Organisations applying under this theme need to have launched or completed a share issue and should expect to be able to provide evidence of a match for the amount requested by December 2014. If applying under this theme groups can be making use of either Right to Bid, Asset Transfer or simply involved in a straightforward asset acquisition.
  • Empty Buildings and Derelict Land: Capital grants to support local communities to bring empty, abandoned, derelict buildings and land back into community use/ownership. Such sites may have been left empty for a variety of reasons such as through absent or irresponsible ownership. Because they have been empty or abandoned for a number of years many of these buildings cannot be listed (as an Asset of Community Value under the Right to Bid). Generally SIB will consider EOIs relating to sites that have been out of use for more than two years.

Groups established for charitable, benevolent or philanthropic purposes should be one of the following:

  • Registered charity
  • Community Interest Company
  • Company limited by guarantee that is non-profit distributing
  • An Industrial and Provident Society (will be renamed as community benefit societies when the Co-operative and Community Benefit Societies and Credit Unions Act 2010 comes into force) that is non-profit distributing.

There is £3.25m available to eligible organisations in 2014. Organisations need to have a clear majority of local people or representatives of local groups on their Board, as well as showing that local people and groups exert control on the direction of their organisation through membership of the Board; draw membership from the area of benefit; involve local groups and/or local volunteers to run activities/services and show they are accountable to their local community and they are able to influence the direction of the organisation through public meetings, consultations, open days, newsletters etc.

Applicants must be able to demonstrate scale, ambition and innovation in the following ways:

  • Innovation either in terms of type of asset, business model, asset or service delivery plans.
  • Evidence of potential or likelihood of being considered an exemplar with potential to inspire others to be ambitious, ie national class leadership for a type of asset, by virtue of type of building or nature of community, land or type of business or service to be provided from the building or nature of community it will benefit. Shows potential to stimulate similar approaches and therefore achieve wider replication.
  • Evidence of use of asset acquisition to achieve transformative community-led service delivery or to showcase pioneering community-led planning outcomes.
  • Evidence of an imaginative approach to combining use of a number of policy and/or strategic initiatives eg Right to Bid, Right to Challenge, Neighbourhood Planning and Right to Build to meet community needs.

The deadline for applications is 26 June 2014 (12 pm).

Further information is available from the SIB Group.