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Glasgow City Council

People Make Glasgow Communities - Frequently Asked Questions

People Make Glasgow Communities

What is People Make Glasgow Communities?

People Make Glasgow Communities is the call to action and mechanism by which local groups and organisations can express an interest in being involved in the delivery of local venues and services which their communities value and rely on.

The involvement of communities in the development, management and delivery of local services and venues is already a key policy priority of Glasgow City Council.

Devolving the management of local facilities and local services is a core city priority; current best practice dictates that community services managed and delivered locally are best placed to meet community needs.

Why is People Make Glasgow Communities needed?

The impact of the global pandemic means it is more difficult to continue to deliver services using traditional operating models, whilst meeting the needs and expectations of the people who value these services. As part of Glasgow City Council's Property and Land Strategy, the Council (including Glasgow Life) is looking at new ways of operating its current directly-managed estate.

The aim is to open up new opportunities which align with the city's wider social recovery programme and establish a more radical approach to community empowerment which shifts the emphasis to 'power in communities'.

What will the benefits be?

An updated model of community

Even before the pandemic, Glasgow City Council was responding to changes in the city's needs over the last decades and opening up discussions about how to adapt provision to better meet them. Discussions were focused around a number of topics, each contributing to an updated model of community.

Localised services

•                The design of the services operated across the city needs to be updated to better respond to local requirements.

•                Current best practice states that community provision should respond to, and be designed by, local needs rather than be a standard city-wide response.

Changes in population

•                How people live across the city has changed, we spend our free time differently and need different kinds of support at different points in our lives.

•                Where people live in the city has changed too over time.

Building stock

•                Many community buildings in Glasgow are out of date for their current use. This drives up operating costs to the point where they can be unsustainable. Some new models are being explored to look at how services delivered by a wide-range of providers can be brought together in a building so that costs can be shared between groups.

Structural and funding models

•                Partnerships between different third sector and community-based organisations have been proven to deliver a more joined-up service.

Connecting into Glasgow's innovative heritage in community

•                Some community projects in Glasgow have already attracted attention because of their long-term focus on the root causes of problems.

•                Glasgow will host COP26 later this year, and by framing community activity against the UN's 17 Sustainable Development Goals, there is the opportunity to gain international awareness of the wide range of innovative work going on in the city.

Is this an attempt to sell-off buildings and stop delivering services?

No. The aim is to ensure the services and resources that are loved and used by the people who rely on and enjoy them continue to be accessible in a way which meets the needs of the community. The relationship between the city and local communities will continue to develop, and civic organisations will be involved in developing and supporting new operating arrangements for these services and resources. The range of approaches available in this first phase includes, but is not limited to:

•                Community hubs

•                Community partnerships

•                Community asset transfers

What kind of organisations can apply?

Any organisation, community group or commercial organisation can apply.

We are asking local people, community groups, third sector organisations, businesses and entrepreneurs to think about how they want to work and how they could work together to build a new future for Glasgow.

The first stage of the process is to encourage expressions of interest which will then be assessed to ensure the people or organisations that want to become involved have the capability and resilience to take on responsibility for the service or building they want to get involved with. Many community facilities in Glasgow already have successful relationships with third sector, community and commercial organisations who understand the needs of the local people who use them.

We appreciate that every venue, building and facility will have its own specific requirements and opportunities. This is an open Call to Action, and we look forward to hearing from anyone who has a view on how their local services can be managed and run.

You can find out about some of our pilot projects here.

What happens after I submit an expression of interest?

A dedicated team is being established to deliver on the principles, aims and objectives of the Council's Property and Land Strategy and supporting Community Asset Plan.

An initial expression of interest to actively manage a building/ venue/ facility will start the application process. The team will undertake a thorough engagement process with the organisation to fully understand the proposal that is being made. An initial assessment of the proposal will be undertaken. Once agreed, we will broaden our engagement to ensure the proposals meet community need.  This will also include discussions with other interested parties.

Finally a dedicated project team will develop and support bespoke models of occupation and operation that find the middle ground between either a completely transferred building/ venue/ facility or a completely Council managed building/ venue/ facility.

How long will it take to get involved?

We aim to process all applications in the first stage within 4-6 weeks. This will depend on the number of enquiries we receive.

Every request will be different due to the different needs of each community, vast estate of buildings and huge range of services potentially involved. We will work quickly to establish appropriate arrangements for meaningful engagement with the applicants to discuss the proposals in more detail. The process of establishing an appropriate model of tenure within the building(s) can then be undertaken. In some cases the outcome will be to transfer responsibility for managing assets to partner organisations, which will receive ongoing support to build capacity, skills and resilience to make these long-term arrangements.

Will my organisation have to make a financial investment?

Operating buildings does come at a cost. Much of the discussion that will take place with interested organisations will look at the cost of operating a building(s). Notwithstanding that, there may be cases where the Council can assist in the initial set-up of these organisations by making some investment in the building(s) and possibly some ongoing financial support until a time when an organisation can become financially self-sufficient.

Will my organisation get support if it is needed?

Yes, we are looking at the level of support different groups and partnering organisations might need. A number of pilot projects have started in the city to explore how organisations can best be supported through the process of taking over and operating services, venues, buildings and facilities.

What other commitments will we be expected to make?

No commitment is being made by the submission of an expression of interest. The level of commitment required by the interested organisation(s) and the Council will vary with each application. The engagement and discussions that the team will have with you will ensure that any commitments required to see the proposal through to maturity will be explained in detail as the discussion develops.

Where can I get more information?

After submitting an application or note of interest, the team will be in touch to discuss your proposal in more detail. Submitting a note of interest does not commit you to anything other than to having a discussion about your proposal. As these discussions mature, it will become apparent if the proposal is one which both parties are happy to pursue through to completion.

Is registration binding?

No, it is an expression of interest only.

What if I am interested in an area but have no specific building in mind?

There is an option within the registration process to register your interest in a specific area or city-wide. Please register your interest here.

What if I am interested in getting involved in managing a venue, building or facility but am not sure if I am ready to manage it alone?

Please register your interest in getting more involved. There might be possibilities for collaboration with other organisations that are also interested in becoming involved in the process. We will also work with you to understand the level of support that you might need. Please register your interest here.

What if I am interested in managing only one aspect of a venue, building or facility, is this possible?

It will depend on what aspect you are interested in managing. We will work with you to understand your needs and will assess what is possible. The registration process allows you to tell us about your specific requirements to allow us to better understand your interest. Please register your interest here.

Can I deliver services from a specific venue, building or facility, without becoming involved in managing it?

There is an option within the registration process to register your interest to use a venue, building or facility without getting involved in managing it. Please register your interest here.

What if I am just interested in being kept informed?

There is an option within the registration process to simply register to receive our newsletters. Please register your interest here.

What is the City Charter?

In May 2018, Glasgow City Council produced its first City Charter, an informal agreement between the Council and citizens which was created and developed through dialogue and consultation with citizens. The proposed approach to promoting community engagement in the city would follow this approach. Find out more here.

What assets are being considered as part of this process?

The enquiry map displays all council owned buildings and land (assets). These are listed on the Council's asset register which is publicised as part of the Community Asset Transfer process which requires full disclosure.

People Make Glasgow Communities uses the same list of assets and welcomes enquiries from organisations and community groups for any of these assets. It is not necessarily the case however that all of these assets are suitable for a transfer of ownership or operational management.

What if I already have a tenure agreement, will it be affected?

No. Each enquiry will be assessed on an individual basis, with all existing use arrangements being taken into account. If there is an existing tenant or user in a building or part of a building it may be that complementary uses are explored but only if this is compatible with the existing lease and operational arrangements.

What happens if there are more than one organisation wanting to manage a building, venue or facility?

In the early application stages where there is more than one interested party in a building, venue or facility, a discussion will take place to determine if it is possible for a joint collaborative application.  Where this is not possible, individual applications will be assessed in their own merit and a decision will be made by a Council Committee on the preferred application.

What level of community engagement will be undertaken?

As part of the application stage, organisations, community groups or commercial organisations will all have to demonstrate how the wider community will be involved in accessing and or running the venue, as well as demonstrating demand, impact and benefit for the services/activities they intend to deliver.

The engagement stage in the process we also involve engagement with the local community and stakeholders, whose views will be used to help shape the final proposals.

Can I get access to information on who is interested in my local venue?

The PMGC programme is following an open and transparent process. At the appropriate stage in the process, when all of the required information has been gathered and initial engagement with the interested parties has progressed to an appropriate stage, wider disclosure and engagement with the local community will be undertaken. In the early stages of the process, however, we do not believe it appropriate to provide the names of the parties who have expressed an interest in these facilities.

What is the difference between the PMGC and the Community Asset Transfer (CAT) process?

The Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act 2015 gives appropriately constituted community groupsthe right to request the purchase, lease or use of land and buildings that belong to local authorities or another public body such as the NHS, Police and Fire Services or Forest Enterprise.

PMGC is an open call for individuals, groups, organisations and businesses to take part in delivering local projects, venues and services. It is not limited to appropriately constituted community groups and it is also about finding property & land solutions by acting in the spirit of the act.

You can still register an interest in a Community Asset Transfer here

The PMGC programme aims to create a palate of options that is much wider than a complete ownership transfer.  In many cases, licences to occupy, leases, property sharing agreements, etc are all quicker than the Community Asset Transfer process, whilst having the same level of rigour applied during the process.  In many cases, we believe that the variety of other tenure arrangements listed above may be stepping stones to an ultimate goal of Community Asset Transfer, and will actually provide many organisations with an opportunity to understand the complexities of asset ownership without the ultimate responsibility.  The interim arrangements will also enable organisations to build their capacity, knowledge, skill, experience and resilience in a much more controlled and supported way.

What support is available if I am interested but lack some knowledge in managing a building, venue or facility?

Officers from the PMGC programme are aware that not all organisations will have the diversity of skills, knowledge and experience available, and the progress of applications will be significantly variable depending on a number of factors.  The PMGC programme team will provide the appropriate level of support and assistance regardless of the pace at which an organisation can progress, or indeed, the level of support an organisation may need to build capacity or resilience.

What are the timescales, how long will it take from expression of interest to a group/ organisation or business taking the keys?

For a variety of reasons there is no definite timescale.  The capacity and development requirements of the organisation will - in large part - influence how long it could take to see a proposal through to maturity, not to mention the type of tenure being requested.  Every expression of interest will be unique and will have bespoke requirements, therefore it is impossible to provide timescales.


Find out more about People Make Glasgow Communities.

You can register your interest here.

Find out more about the City Charter here.

Read more about the thinking about community development here.

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