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Transferring Local Authority Assets to the Community

All over the country, community-based organisations are taking on responsibility for managing buildings that were formerly owned by local authorities. By doing so, they can help to focus the energies of local communities and prevent these assets, which are often local landmarks, from falling into decay or inappropriate use.

Community ownership can help to secure a local service or amenity (such as a community hall or a public open space), at a time when local authorities are looking to make economies.

Local authorities can sell an asset at less than full market value where this would support a use that brings social, economic or environmental benefits for the area.

Of course, such transfers are not without their challenges. Community groups may need support and advice to help them make a success of their project, and to ensure that it remains viable through changing circumstances.

External view of the outdoor ice rink at Oxford Castle
Oxford Castle. A successful partnership between the Oxford Preservation Trust, the City Council and The Trevor Osborne Group resulted in the creation of this new cultural quarter for Oxford. © Oxford Preservation Trust: Charlotte Wood

Heritage asset transfer guidance

In 2015 we published our updated guidance on heritage asset transfer, Pillars of the Community: The Transfer of Local Authority Heritage Assets. This document outlines the process for asset transfers, both from a local authority and community perspective.

It is accompanied by a number of case studies showing what can be achieved.

If you have any questions about the guidance or the case studies (including any suggestions for additional examples) please contact Owain Lloyd-James.

Pillars of the community: the transfer of local authority heritage assets

Pillars of the community: the transfer of local authority heritage assets

Published 30 April 2015

2nd Edition. Advice to local authorities and local groups on transferring heritage assets from public ownership into the hands of the community.

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