Progress checklist

1. Understanding asset transfer

1A: What is Community Asset Transfer?

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1B: What are the benefits of Community Asset Transfer?

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Community: Have you researched the asset transfer policies and history of the Local Authority and identified who is responsible for negotiating asset transfers?

2. Getting started

2A: Purpose and vision

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Community: Is the reason for wanting an asset transfer clear? Is there a clear vision for the future based around the transfer of facilities?
Community: Has the vision for the transfer been backed by local people?
Community: Does the purpose fit with your mission, aims and objectives as an organisation or do you need to change them?
Community: Do you have a clear and consistent message?

2B: Getting organised and fit for purpose

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Community: have you explored the implications of incorporation?
Community: have you obtained advice on suitable legal structures to meet current and future needs?

2C: Having the right people involved

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Community: Do you have all the skills and experience you need in your project team?
Community: As a group are you overly reliant on just a few individuals?
Local authority: Do you have the right people from the right departments working together to support the transfer?
Local authority: Is there someone with responsibility for ensuring the best outcome for both sides and ensure timely completion?

2D: Know your asset

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Community: Has a thorough site appraisal been carried out, with the help of suitable external advisors?
Community: Are there any site risks that mean your plan is fatally compromised?
Community: Have all the ‘make or break’ questions been answered to a reasonable degree of certainty?
Community: has the feasibility of the transfer been tested against your original vision and purpose?
Community: Have similar projects been visited and learned from as part of your stage 1 feasibility?
Community: have all the risks been identified and addressed?
Local authority: have you made available to the community group as much information as possible about the condition and history of the site?
Local authority: can the terms of the transfer take into account any liabilities, including the cost of necessary repairs and future maintenance?
Local authority: Has relevant information been provided to the potential transferee to help with feasibility assessments?

2E: Fitting in with public policy

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Community: Have you identified where the project fits with relevant local and national policies, in particular, Sports Strategy, local community strategy and the asset transfer strategy of the local authority?
Community: Have you checked the Local Plan and Neighbourhood Plan (if there is one) to see how the site is designated?
Local authority: have you considered how Community Asset Transfer fits into your sports and leisure and open spaces strategies?
Are there clear and transparent processes for initiating and completing asset transfers with clear criteria based on corporate priorities?

2F: Engaging your community

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Community: Have different groups of people and organisations in the community been identified and are there plans in place to engage with them?
Local authority: Are local Councillors well informed about the project and able to talk knowledgably about it to constituents?
Local authority: Has there been good communication by the Local Authority regarding the possible transfer of community sports facilities and the decision making process?

2G: Finding partners

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Community: Have you identified your gaps and weaknesses and where partners might help?
Community: Have you made it clear publically that you are looking for partners?
Local authority: Does the local authority consider itself as a partner in the success of the Community Asset Transfer project?
Local authority: Has the local authority considered suitable partners and facilitated introductions to them?

3. Getting ready for transfer

3A: Needs analysis

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Community: Is there a proven need and demand for the sports facility and the services you propose?
Community: Have you engaged and consulted the local community in a creative and open way to find innovative ideas?
Community: Has a similar facility been visited to compare use and demand assumptions?

3B: Governance structures & accountability

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Community: Have you looked at your governing document and checked you are complying with it?
Community: Have you had a recent AGM and approved you annual accounts?
Community: Do you have robust financial management procedures which are followed at all times?
Community: Do you have good records of decision-making and do board members report conflicts of interest?
Community: Do you have the right policies in places ready for transfer?

3C: Business planning

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Community: Is your business plan expectation reasonable and proportionate?
Community: have you found a critical friend to help you with writing the business plan?
Community: Have all members of the project team been involved in business planning at some point?
Community: is there a viable business model at the heart of your plans?
Community: Have all the costs associated with managing the asset been identified to include in the revenue projections?
Community: Have costs and income been projected in enough detail?
Community: Have hiring/rental levels been set to balance access with profitability?
Community: Does the committee/management group understand all the figures for the project and the assumptions on which they are based?
Community: Is the repairs and renewals budget based on a whole life costing assessment of the asset?
Local authority: Have you offered independent support to groups to help with business planning?
Local authority: Have you interrogated and tested the business model?
Local authority: Have historic operational and capital repair costs been provided?

3D: Securing finance

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Community: Is there a fundraising strategy in place that targets funders most relevant to the community sports organization, the project and the sums required?
Community: Are you satisfied that any capital costs required can be secured?
Community: Have any pre-application discussions taken place with potential funders?
Community: Has the time required to raise the necessary funds been factored into the development process?
Local authority: Have you provided assurances in writing about the intention to transfer the site to provide assurance to funders?

4. Transferring the asset

4A: Timing of transfer

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4B: Negotiating legal agreements

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4C: Types of tenure

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Community: Are you satisfied that the asset can be secured on the right terms and conditions? Have heads of terms been agreed before leases are drafted?
Community: Are any constraints on the use of the asset in relation to the lease terms going to prevent it being used flexibly in the future?
Community: Do you fully understand the implications of the management/ownership agreement associated with the transfer? E.g. are the repair and maintenance obligations reasonable? Are requirements of the lease in relation to sub-letting flexible?
Local authority: Have you been fair and proportionate in the conditions applied in any contracts or leases? Have you considered the needs of the club/community organization in making the asset viable?
Local authority: Have lawyers been instructed accurately to avoid time-wasting?

5. Property development

5A: Planning considerations

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5B: Design considerations

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Community: Is the design of the facility flexible so that it can change if necessary?

5C: Appointing and managing professionals

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Community: Have you developed a detailed brief to help you appoint your property professionals?

6. Premises management

6A: Financial management

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Community: Has the community organisation got a financial management system in place to support its current and future business needs.
Community: Are good financial management practices and procedures agreed or in place?
Community: Has VAT advice been taken from a professional?

6B: Health and safety

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Community: Has the community organisation prioritised Health and Safety and designated someone as responsible to oversee its implementation?

6C: Security

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Community: Has the community organisation considered all of the potential security risks associated with managing the facility?
Community: Is it possible to limit access to parts of the building / site if necessary, or to close off when not in use?
Community: Do you have adequate insurance in place to cover losses and damage to equipment and buildings?
Community: Do you have systems for recording key holders and site users?

6D: Maintenance programme

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Community: Have all the costs associated with managing the sports facility (and therefore its value), been estimated based on whole life costing?
Community: Have all the tasks associated with maintaining and managing the sports facility been allocated to staff (or contractors) with relevant skills and experience?
If the community organisation is not employing property management personnel, has it considered how its volunteers will cover all of the necessary responsibilities of facilities management?

6E: Staff

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Community: have you considered all of the options to maximize volunteer input, to complement and paid staff resource?
Community: Are steps being taken to build capacity within the organisation, e.g. by investing in training, leveraging the skills of an external mentor or setting up a small task and finish group to take on specific responsibilities like fund raising?
Local authority: Have the implications of TUPE been addressed in such a way as to be fair to employees and to ensure the community organisation can continue to be a viable business?

6F: Monitoring and evaluation

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Community: Is there a clear baseline of data against which to measure the impact of the transfer?
Is there a method in place for monitoring and evaluating impact that is appropriate and proportionate for the needs of all stakeholders?
Local authority: Has historic data about the facility been provided to the community organisation to help with setting a baseline and tracking progress?
Local authority: is it clear what outcomes the LA is looking for, how these are to be measured and reported on and what help the LA can offer to help achieve this post transfer?