What is an "asset of community value"?

September 28, 2023 - Reading time: 7 minutes

Fessing up! Most of this post was generated by asking ChatGPT what it's all about. I couldn't see many reasons to edit it...see the bits in green italics!* The first challenge we faced was getting The New Clarence listed as an "Asset of Community Value". Read on to find out why that was important.

Designating a property or land as an "Asset of Community Value" (ACV) is a powerful tool that empowers local communities and fosters a sense of ownership, pride, and responsibility. This legal status provides numerous benefits to communities by preserving important places and enabling them to have a say in the development and preservation of their surroundings. So how does that work?.

Designating a property as an ACV safeguards vital community spaces. These spaces often hold historical, cultural, or social significance to the local population. ACV designation discourages quick sales or changes of use, preserving places such as community centres, local libraries, parks, or community facilities (including pubs!). This protection helps retain a community's identity and heritage, creating a sense of continuity and stability.

Under the "Localism Act 2011", councils hold and are legally required to publish lists of ACVs under their jurisdiction. Some have many. Some have none. Check out your local council by going to their website and searching for "Assets of Community Value" or "Community Right to Bid"

Additionally, ACV designation promotes community engagement and cohesion. When a property is identified as an asset of community value, it triggers a sense of responsibility among community members. They become more invested in its preservation, maintenance, and improvement. This involvement fosters a stronger sense of community and encourages collaborative efforts to ensure the long-term sustainability and success of the asset.
Witness the existence of 350 community owned pubs in the UK already.

The ACV status also grants communities the "right to bid" if the property goes up for sale. This means that when the owner decides to sell the asset, community groups are given the opportunity to prepare a bid to purchase it before it is sold on the open market. This provision levels the playing field and offers communities a fair chance to acquire and maintain important assets, preventing potential loss to private entities or incompatible developments.
Obviously this only applies if the 'community' in question know about the ACV process. We didn't, so our situation is a little more 'nuanced'.

Furthermore, ACV designation encourages local economic growth and entrepreneurship. By protecting key assets, communities can attract businesses, investors, and visitors who appreciate the unique character and heritage of the area. This, in turn, stimulates economic activity, creates job opportunities, and sustains local businesses. The ACV status provides a stable environment for growth, allowing communities to reap the benefits of development while preserving their identity.

In terms of public well-being, ACV designation often means the continued availability of essential services and facilities. For instance, a property designated as an ACV might be a local healthcare facility or a community hall. Ensuring the preservation of such assets is crucial for the well-being of residents, particularly vulnerable or under-served populations who heavily rely on these services.
If you have a community space or facility that you are concerned to preserve, we'll gladly share our knowledge and experience with you. Just ask.

Moreover, ACV designation can lead to enhanced funding opportunities. Government bodies, private donors, and philanthropic organizations often prioritize investments in assets that hold community value. With an official ACV status, communities are better positioned to access grants, subsidies, and financial support to maintain and improve the asset, ultimately benefiting the community as a whole. In conclusion, designating properties as "Assets of Community Value" is a valuable tool that promotes community engagement, preserves cultural heritage, stimulates economic growth, and ensures the well-being of local residents. It empowers communities to shape their environment, protect their values, and foster a sense of togetherness and pride. This legal status stands as a symbol of community strength and determination, enabling communities to create a brighter and more sustainable future.
I'd have said that differently - but I'm not ChatGPT and as far as I can see, he/she/it is not far wrong.

*Hull has a maritime history, and the First Sea Lord of The British Admiralty always writes important stuff in green ink.
Pubs. Community. Shared learning...

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September 28, 2023 - Reading time: ~1 minute

Our supporters survey is the gateway to a conversation about the future of The New Clarence. Please share your thoughts with us - we really are interested! The survey is hosted on Google forms; please take the time to complete it if you would like to see the New Clarence open again.

Once we have the results of the survey we will arrange another meeting of the group to present them and discuss next steps

We would like to hear from you if you are able and willing to help in the next steps. We could really do with help from anyone with legal, accounting and social media skills and experience.

If you have any questions or would like to know more please email SavetheClarence@gmail.com or use the contact form on this blog.

Thank you for your interest and support

Claire, Ian and Catherine