Chance to save key community ‘assets’

COMMUNITIES will be given first refusal to buy things like village pubs, shops or open spaces under a new scheme.

The ‘community right to buy’ scheme – properly known as the assets of community value scheme – is being launched in the district.

Its objective is to enable community groups to nominate land or property that furthers the social interests or wellbeing of their community.The assets can be any building or land which is deemed key to improving the social interests and wellbeing of the community. Land or property that is successfully nominated will be held on a list of ‘Assets of Community Value’ and owners of listed property will be required to inform Daventry District Council if they intend to sell the property.

Community groups will then have up to six months to prepare a bid to buy it, during which time the owner will not be able to enter any other agreement to sell it. Owners may then sell to whomever they wish after the six months are up.

Simon Bowers, business manager at DDC, said: “The government’s idea in setting up this new scheme is to allow community groups the time to prepare a bid for land or 
property that improves the social wellbeing or the social interests of the local community should the property be put up for sale and they fear it will be lost.

“That could be cultural, recreational or sporting interests that are important to the community, such as a village shop or local sports club.

“It does not mean that the property owner must sell to a community group, just that there is a pause in a commercial sale process so that a community group can raise funds to make a bid.”

Community groups can now nominate property and if it meets the required criteria, DDC will include it on its list.

Anyone who is considering making an application to have an ‘asset’ listed can email: Daventry District Council at communityassets@daventrydc.gov.uk or call 01327 871100.