In England, an asset of community value (ACV) is land or property of importance to a local community which is subject to additional protection from development under the Localism Act 2011. Voluntary and community organisations can nominate an asset to be included on their local authority’s register of asset of community value.
Under the terms of the legislation, registration as an asset of community value covers four aspects:
- Removal of permitted development rights for change of use and demolition of public houses: owners seeking to change a pub’s planning use class or to demolish it must allow its users (for example, a pub’s regular drinkers) to comment.
- Material planning consideration: ACV status is a material consideration in a planning application and can be used by the Planning Inspectorate as a factor in refusing planning permission for change of use or demolition.
- Community right to bid: this allows an ACV to be purchased by a group representing its users or the local community.
The owner of an asset of community value must inform the local authority if they wish to sell the asset. If a group wants to buy the asset, they can trigger a moratorium for six months, to give them a chance to raise the money to purchase the asset. The owner does not have to sell to a community group. The asset of community value listing only improves the chances of community groups being able to purchase by providing more time to raise funds. It does not require the owner to sell at a discount.
By late 2015, of about 860 pubs across the country which had registered as ACVs, twelve had been acquired by groups under the Community Right to Bid.
The largest group of listings have been for pubs, with over one hundred listed by August 2013 and six hundred by March 2015. Sport and leisure facilities include Ewood Park football stadium, Old Trafford football stadium, St. Andrews football stadium,Blackpool Football Stadium, Bloomfield Road, Blackpool, The Valley and the South Bank Undercroft; sports clubs; parks including Myddleton Square in Islington.