Access to the Community Right to Build fund is now available for community groups to bid for finance to support planning applications for community-led developments, as an alternative to the Community Right to Build Order process.

The Housing Minister, Mark Prisk has just issued guidance for access to a £14M pot which will be available over the next two years (2013-15) for communities in England (excluding Greater London).

The aim of extending the funding is to enable greater access and take up by community organisations looking to promote community-led development.

The Community Right to Build was originally launched in April 2012, to encourage in particular small-scale locally-led developments.  Take up has been slow, even with funding available, as the Community Right to Build Order route hasn’t gained traction.  Indeed, it was acknowledged at the outset that if community development proposals fitted into the local authority’s local development plan then an easier route might, in fact, be to make a planning application.  Widening access to funding to support planning applications acknowledges that this may well be the preferred route for such projects.

More information on the eligibility for funding and assessment criteria can be found in the guidance.