Pembrokeshire Community Cooperative Share Offers Scheme
The project proposal is a 2-year pilot with the aim of developing a Community Shares Support Service for Pembrokeshire. This activity is noted in the LEADER intervention logic table and the LDS document.
The pilot project would employ a Community Shares Development officer to focus and report on the following key activities:
- Identify communities who wish to develop a community benefit share offer cooperative to set up new Social Enterprises with a target of 6 new community cooperatives trading within 24 months.
- Support communities with share offers to purchase land and buildings to retain existing services and develop new ones.
- Provide template documents for communities to effectively develop their constitutions, business plans and share offer documents.
- Support the community cooperatives to offer HMRC Tax incentives to local investors to gain 30% tax incentives on schemes such as the Enterprise Investment Scheme and the Social Investment Tax Relief.
- Arranging training event for community cooperative board members and volunteers.
- Providing succession planning opportunities for existing older business owners to establish cooperative share opportunities rather than retiring and closing their profitable businesses.
- Establishing a Community Shares Network Group for Pembrokeshire to share best practice.
During the past 12 months there has been an increased awareness of community share offer opportunities with a pan Wales project led by Wales Cooperative Centre. Within Pembrokeshire we have seen initiatives such as the one for Tafarn Sinc at Rosebush which had considerable press coverage.
This pilot project will work with communities that have indicated their desire to pilot new share offers to estable social enterprises within their community. Currently 8 communities have contacted PLANED to seek information and guidance on developing community share offers.
There are great examples across the country of how communities have collated their financial savings to regenerate their towns and villages. This project will set up regular Skype exchanges to discuss how other projects acheived their success and what were the barriers and the pitfalls. This learning will be passed on to new community groups wishing to develop local cooperatives via share offers.