A bar tender pulling a pint behind the bar. There are other people in the background, and it looks like a nice atmosphere.

Community rights are a set of powers that give you a greater say over how your community develops. They can help you to save local shops, pubs, libraries, parks and football grounds.

You can decide what is built and how the area should develop. Groups of people have the chance to deliver local services and develop them into community enterprises.

There are four Community Rights

The new Rights contained within the Localism Act came into effect in 2012 devolving power from government to communities, local authorities and individuals.

1. Community Right to Bid

‘We want to save my local pub, library, football ground’

You can use the Community Right to Bid to ‘pause’ the sale of a building or land you care about, giving your community time to develop a bid to buy it.

2. Community Right to Build

‘We want to build affordable housing and other community facilities’

The Right to Build gives communities the power to build new shops, housing or community facilities without going through the normal planning process.

3. Community Right to Challenge

‘We can do this better – I want to deliver services and set up a social enterprise’

Are you looking to run a local service?

The Right to Challenge gives local groups the opportunity to express their interest in taking over a local service where they think they can do it differently and better.

4. Community Right to Reclaim Land

‘We can use this land in a better way’

The Community Right to Reclaim Land allows communities to challenge local councils and some other public bodies to release their unused and underused land. As land is held on the behalf of the taxpayer, councils have a duty to use it effectively. The Rights gives communities the power to ensure that they do so.

Submitting requests is a simple and easy process, with request forms and detailed guidance available on the government website.

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