Our public buildings and spaces are vital; whether they are local libraries, green spaces or community centres, these assets sit at the heart of our neighbourhoods.
But years of austerity measures and cuts to local authority budgets have meant that hard-pressed councils are having to sell, cut or shut crucial parts of our community infrastructure.
There is a better way: Our ‘Places & Spaces – The future of community asset ownership’ paper calls for a £1bn fund to save the nation’s public assets. Not only would this prevent our most iconic community buildings from being lost for good, it’s a huge opportunity to empower communities, reshape public services and regenerate local economies.
Following the EU referendum, the need for communities to have a real stake in their local areas and control over the activities and services which matter to them has never felt more important. This new Community Asset Investment Plan could help put communities back in the driving seat and give them more control over what happened in their neighbourhoods.
Communities in control
Across the country, enterprising communities are seeking to manage and own important assets to transform the places they live. Local people are coming together every day to:
- safeguard vital community facilities and renovate empty or derelict buildings
- create spaces for local businesses and social enterprises to thrive provide
- affordable housing so people aren’t priced out of their own neighbourhoods.
Communities are willing to fight for the public assets that mean something to them – this investment will mean that more can be saved.
Our bold plan to increase community asset ownership would be a hugely significant step forward to building the capacity of community organisations so that they are better equipped to take assets and secure the future of our most important and treasured community buildings, land and infrastructure for generations to come.
Our call for a £1bn fund to save the nation’s public assets is supported by the following organisations: