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Assets of Community Value

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5. How does the moratorium work?

The three periods

When we receive notice from the owner of an intended disposal, the following periods begin to run. This applies to land or buildings included in the our list of assets of community value.

  • In the first instance, there is an "interim moratorium period" of six weeks. During which a defined "community interest group" can submit a written request to be treated as a potential bidder for the land. We must pass the request on to the owner.
  • The "full moratorium period" of six months is triggered if such a request is received. It is intended to give the group time to assemble a bid and, if successful, complete the purchase.
  • During the "protected period" of eighteen months (from the same original date), the owner is free to sell the asset without further delay. This applies if no community interest group has submitted a request and/or pursued it through to completion of a purchase within the relevant moratorium periods.

What is a community interest group?

Note that a "community interest group" is defined as a narrower range of bodies than those who can nominate an asset for inclusion on the list:-

Group A

  • a parish council;
  • a charity;
  • a community interest company;

or one of the following which does not distribute any surplus it makes to its members:-

Group B

  • a company limited by guarantee;
  • an industrial and provident society.

In addition, the body must have a local connection. This means that its activities are wholly or partly concerned with the administrative area of Exeter City Council or a neighbouring local authority. In the case of a body in Group B, any surplus must be wholly or partly applied for the benefit of the same area.