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Community Rights: A Reality Check Nick Bird

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Community Rights: A Reality Check Nick Bird Community Rights. Community Right to Challenge. Community Right to Buy. Community Right to Build. Neighbourhood Planning. Community Rights Made Real (Dudley) . Dudley Council for Voluntary Service

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Presentation Transcript
Community Rights:

A Reality Check


Community Right to Build

Neighbourhood Planning

community rights made real dudley

Community Rights Made Real (Dudley)

Dudley Council for Voluntary Service

Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council

Dudley Community Partnership

some general issues
Some general issues

Timing – at same time as

cuts – retreat to ‘silos’

  • Historical – people feel let down
  • by previous initiatives

Policy priorities change - new

initiatives don’t build on

what already exists

Culture shift – “On a bad day it

feels like the Government is

abdicating responsibility”

Engagement is an intensive

business. “You don’t become

empowered by just having a right”

Communities change. People come

and go - groups wax and wane

Difference in how different parts of

the council operate. Difference

between policy and practice

Senior council officers have limited

understanding of the VCS

Differences between larger VCS

and smaller community groups

Local government seems to be

waiting to see what happens

rather than being proactive


Community right to challenge

  • Meeting service delivery quality & standards
  • Destabilisation of services
  • Costs incurred in procurement
  • It will open the door to the private sector
  • Councils prefer one big contract rather than lots of smaller ones
  • Local knowledge & building the local economy versus cost

Community right to buy

  • We will get the worst buildings
  • Groups don’t have the capacity to manage buildings
  • Renting is safer than buying
  • Assets can become liabilities
  • Limited power when up against the big players
  • It takes time to put a bid together
Quite a positive response to Neighbourhood Planning


Very little feedback on Community Right to Build

Some questions regarding Neighbourhood Planning

How do we agree on a neighbourhood?

What if the council disagrees with us?

What about neighbourhoods that cross local authority boundaries?

How do we decide who can vote in a referendum?

What if there is a pocket of deprivation within a more affluent area and the residents have different needs?

Our Society – Our Solutions

Stories of success that are

meaningful to local people

Partnerships for delivering

services and managing assets

Networking / brokering

“Anatomy of Services”

  • Different levels of service?
  • ‘Whole’ or ‘parts’ of a service?
  • The value of community groups?

Better communication of

council plans in a language

that people understand

Community Right to Challenge

as a warning to instigate dialogue

A flexible strategy around

asset management

Find out more:

Policy briefings: Community Rights, Localism Bill, Big Society mini-briefings and more…

Community Rights Policy Page: A collection of all our information resources on Community Rights