Village in rural Scotland. Aerial shot

Government money increases fund to rescue community assets

The government has announced that it has expanded the Communities Ownership Fund, allowing more community projects to apply for funding. 

Local assets such as sports clubs, music venues and historical buildings will be able to apply for government funding as part of the third round of the Community Ownership Fund, with £150 million worth of allocations available. 

Thanks to changes to the way the funding is delivered, it is now easier for the control of prized assets to be seized back by community groups. This will help with the strengthening and levelling up of local communities, whilst also restoring optimism, hope and pride. The changes see the requirements for match-funding being reduced, making the process of acquiring assets without private funding easier. Parish Councils are also now able to apply for the fund, with it previously only being available to charities and community groups. 

Dehenna Davison MP, Minister for Levelling Up, said: 

“From far-flung pubs to prized community centres, the Community Ownership Fund is putting vital assets back into the hands of communities, to be enjoyed for generations to come. 

“We want even more communities to benefit from the fund and that’s why we are making these changes so community groups can apply for even more money to save much loved local assets. 

“We will continue to grow this fund to empower local people, restoring their pride in the places where they live and levelling up communities across the United Kingdom.” 

More than 100 projects around the country are being supported by the the fund, including: 

  • Britain’s most remote pub being taken under full community ownership 

  • A local community group in Gateshead renovating their community centre 

  • The transformation of the largest building in Leigh, Greater Manchester 

  • The creation of state-of-the-art sports facilities for a sports academy in Norther Ireland 

  • One of the Wales’ first purpose built electric cinemas being saved, as well as providing film education opportunities for young people 

  • A pub in Suffolk being bought the local community, with the aim of it being transformed. 

Minister of State for Northern Ireland, Steve Baker, said: 

“The Community Ownership Fund is already supporting seven great projects across Northern Ireland with £1.5 million in funding, making a real difference to local communities. 

“It’s wonderful to see the launch of round three, which will save more local community assets by supporting proposals that enable communities here to thrive, boosting levelling up across Northern Ireland.” 

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