The Council is committed to processing any application for asset transfer in an open and transparent way in partnership with the organisation concerned. The undernoted table outlines the stages in the application process.
It is recognised in some circumstances that the Stage 1 Suitability of Asset assessment by the officer Working Group may come after the receipt of an Expression of Interest application.
Things you need to think about before applying
The Council will be looking for evidence of community support for the transfer. This has to be obtained through consulting existing building users, other community groups and other stakeholders from within the community.
Where two or more community organisations have an interest in the asset, the Council would expect them to work together and come to an agreement on the way forward. This may involve a joint bid.
Who is eligible?
It is difficult to provide a comprehensive definition of the type of organisation eligible for asset transfer. In general, a group will:
- Be formally constituted
- Have sound, long-term management and governance arrangements
- Have its own decision-making system and accountability to independent trustees or its own members or constituents
- Be non-political
- Have an element of involvement of volunteers
- Have Charitable Status
- Is not for private profit i.e. it does not distribute any surplus to owners or members but applies it to serving its basic purposes
Newly formed groups may also be considered suitable for transfer provided they can demonstrate that they have the necessary expertise and experience to manage the asset and have a sound business plan in place.
|Stage 1 – Suitability of Assets|
| ||The Community Asset Transfer (CAT) Group will determine whether an asset is suitable for transfer. This will involve a consideration of community need, a review of the assets condition, current running costs and establish if there are any title restrictions. (internal process)|
|Stage 2 – Expressions of interest|
|6 weeks for VCO to apply.|
4 Weeks to determine application.
|If the asset is suitable, a VCO will complete an Expression of interest form and provide a summary of the proposal identifying local support.
The CAT Group will review the information provided in support of the application to determine the strength of the proposals and the suitability of the VCO. If the assessment is satisfactory and no other interest identified, the VCO will be invited to stage 3.|
|Stage 3 – Detailed submission|
|3 months for VCO to submit application||The VCO will require to submit a detailed application including Business Plan which should contain the key elements shown in the Guidance Notes provided to VCOs.|
|Stage 4 – Consideration of application|
|6 Weeks||The CAT Group will then assess the application against the assessment criteria. Where the CAT Group considered the application favourably, a report will be prepared for Cabinet outlining the terms and conditions of the proposed transfer.|
Where the CAT Group considers it not appropriate to proceed with an application, the VCO will be advised accordingly.
|Stage 5 – Cabinet approval|
|6 weeks||A report will be presented to Cabinet within 6 weeks of the CAT Group recommendation.|
|Up to maximum of 6 months||Following a Cabinet decision to recommend transfer, the VCO will work to secure the necessary funding and Council officers will also work with the VCO to finalise the legal aspects of the transfer. Once funding is in place and any necessary planning consent secured, the asset can be transferred to the VCO.|
It is recognised that there may require to be ongoing support from Council officers to ensure a successful transfer.
Interested in applying?
If you are interested in submitting an expression of interest please complete and return the application form to:
Vibrant Communities - CAT group
Civic Centre South
John Dickie Street
Vibrant Communities Team support available
If required, a member of staff from the Vibrant Communities Team will meet with group members to identify and agree an appropriate support programme. For further information please contact Caroline Gray, Project Support Worker, Vibrant Communities – CAT team.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Telephone: 01563 578148.