New guidance to help communities take ownership of local assets

New guidance to help communities across Wales take ownership of local assets and services at threat of closure has been launched by Finance and Government Business Minister Jane Hutt.

The Minister will launch the ‘Community Asset Transfers in Wales – A Best Practice Guide’ at Pontyclun Day Centre in Rhondda Cynon Taff. The centre, which provides a daily meal service for over 60 people, has been successfully kept open following a Community Asset transfer proposal by Pontyclun Community Council.

The new guidance provides advice to communities on taking ownership of local assets through the development of sustainable business cases and lists some of the more common risks, suggesting ways that these can be minimised and managed. It includes case studies of examples where properly managed transfers have been successfully delivering local benefits.

The guidance has been developed following feedback from various sectors, including local authorities, third sector and town and community councils.

The Minister said:

“The current difficult financial climate for our public services means we must continue to find new, innovative ways to deliver our services more efficiently against the backdrop of reduced resources. The new guidance is therefore very timely and provides local communities with the support and advice they need to successfully take ownership of assets and services at threat of closure.

“I am delighted to be launching this guidance at Pontyclun Day Centre, a great example of how the local community council successfully kept the centre open following a Community Asset transfer. The centre continues to support the local community and is thriving.  I want to see this success replicated across Wales and I hope this new guidance encourages a growing number of successful asset transfers.”