Community Right to Bid

The Community Right to Bid is a new legal power brought in by the Localism Act in 2011. This right gives communities the opportunity to pause the sale of buildings or land they care about for example a local pub, shop, library or football ground. These might currently be owned by a local authority or another public body or by a private company or an individual.

The stages of the Community Right to Bid

Nomination

The first step is for a community group to nominate land and buildings to be part of a register of assets of community value. This is done by completing the 'Assets of community value nomination form'.  Properties can be nominated at any time.

Decision

The decision on listing needs to be taken by the local authority – in this case, Cotswold District Council. We will consider whether the proposed asset meets the conditions required by law for listing. Should we decide to list a property, the land owner has the right to appeal. Listed properties are published on an ‘Assets of community value register’. Assets which are not listed are also published on an 'Unsuccessful nominations for asset of community value register'.

When a property is put on the market

When listed land or buildings are offered for sale, the community has an initial period of six weeks in which to make an expression of interest to purchase the asset.  This act triggers the full ‘moratorium’ – a six month period (including the initial six weeks) during which the owner is unable to sell to any buyer other than a community interest group.

Once this six month period ends, the owner is free to sell the land or building to whoever they wish, at the price they wish, and for a protected period of 18 months will not again be subject to a further moratorium.

Exceptions and limits to the right to bid

Certain categories of land are exempt from this right, such as residential dwellings and operational land owned by ‘statutory undertakers’ which is organisations like utilities. In other circumstances, there are certain disposal of land which are exempt from the act, such as a gift to family members, disposal of part of a business sold as a going concern.

Listing land or buildings does not automatically prevent other changes, so for example, listing a pub as a community asset does not automatically prevent a change of use to residential property. An entry of the Assets of Community Value can be a material consideration for a planning decision, but does not by itself automatically prevent a successful planning application.

For more information about the The Community Right to bid process please:

Cotswold District Council
Trinity Road
Cirencester
Gloucestershire
GL7 1PX