Communities can take ownership of at risk venues

Dumfries and Galloway MP Alister Jack has welcomed communities being given the chance to become owners of at-risk pubs, theatres, post offices, sports grounds and corner shops.

By Julie Currie
Thursday, 22nd July 2021, 11:28 am
Updated Thursday, 22nd July 2021, 11:48 am
Dumfries and Galloway MP Alister Jack

The UK Government’s new £150m Community Ownership Fund is part of a strategy to bui ld back better from the pandemic by saving the local institutions that foster a sense of community.

V oluntary and community organisations across Scotland will be able to bid for up to £250,000 matched funding to buy or take over local assets and run them.

Up to £1m wi ll be available to establish sports clubs or help to buy sports grounds at risk without intervention – meaning supporters could become the board of their local team.

Sign up to our daily The Galloway Gazette Today newsletter

A total of £12.3m has been set aside for community projects in Scotland, whether they be sporting and leisure facilities, cinemas and theatres, music venues, museums, galleries, parks, pubs, post office buildings and shops.

Prime Minister Boris Joh nston unveiled more details last week, setting out how the UK Government will continue to level up all regions as we bounce back from the pandemic.

Mr Jack, who is also Scottish Secretary, s aid: "The Community Ownership Fund is part of a crucial package of UK Government investment to support communities.

"The funds will play an important role as we build back better from the pandemic. I encourage communities across Scotland to take advantage of the wonderful opportunities the Fund provides."

The announcement follows major investment and action from the UK Government to level up opportunity and prosperity across the country, including through the £4.8 bn Levelling Up Fund and the £220m Community Renewal Fund.

The UK Government will undertake a series of information events with communities, the Voluntary and Community Sector and local authorities in all parts of the UK.

The first bidding round closes on Friday, August 13, with another seven bidding rounds over the next four years. ​