At ACS we have a wealth of experience in supporting community organisations.  We have been involved in supporting the Locality-run community rights helpline since the implementation of the Localism Act began, building on our support for community asset transfer and our long history of neighbourhood led regeneration.  We work closely with clients to address poverty and social injustice; offer better life opportunities; create better, safer environments; and widen access to services.

We also have nationally-recognised expertise in working with local government, social landlords, schools and other educational establishments and we work with neighbourhood regeneration initiatives to improve health facilities, schools, housing, community assets and facilities, roads, highways, the local environment and enterprise.

David Alcock, Social Business lead at ACS, is looking forward to the opportunities that supporting the Community Rights programme brings.  “At Anthony Collins Solicitors we are committed to making a proactive difference in society and within local communities, so we are looking forward to supporting Locality and colleagues to enable communities to have a greater influence over what happens in their local areas.”

The five other contracts are:

  • community economic development
  • community ownership and management of assets
  • grant administration
  • neighbourhood planning and community Right to Build
  • first steps and our place

The delivery partners also include Civic Voice, Ubele and Voice 4 Change and will help the Our Place programme reach into harder to reach communities.

The Community Rights programme will give people even more people greater control and influence over what happens locally and Stephen Williams also announced a new £6 million funding boost to the Programme.

Up and down the country, communities are taking action – from regulars running their local pub and protecting other treasured assets to ambitious plans for new development, new jobs and better targeted services.

This new funding will mean:

  • likeminded communities will be able to network and learn from each other through the new My Community Network
  • communities will have access to tailored advice through a phone and online advice service to help them use the range of community rights and other neighbourhood approaches
  • 100 more neighbourhoods will be supported to use the Our Place approach, enabling councils and other public sector providers, voluntary and community groups, local businesses and the community to work together to tackle important local issues from job creation to health priorities
  • 100 communities will receive support to take the first steps in identifying important local issues and develop Community Action Plans
  • 50 communities will receive support to develop economic plans to address local economic priorities like job creation and enterprise
  • 50 local authority/community partnerships will receive advice, support and grants to support the transfer of multiple or complex publicly owned assets into community ownership

Stephen Williams said:

The new monies announced today complement the £22.5 million funding for Neighbourhood Planning and £3.5 million for the Community Right to Build giving communities more of a say in where new homes, shops and offices should be built and what they should look like.

The total contract value to 2018 is £32 million. For 2015 to 2016, the total value of the six contracts is £15.2 million. This includes today’s new allocation of £6 million and the previously announced £22.5 million of funding for Neighbourhood Planning.

For more information

For more information about the funding and contracts please see www.gov.uk

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