Community Ownership Week

Book yourself onto all three webinars in our Community Ownership Week and get £10 off!

The webinars during this week include Community Ownership: How to get started 2pm – 4.30pm on 18 November, Cut the Crap: Making community leadership work 10.30am-1pm on 21 November, and Community Shares: Raising the Right Type of Finance For Your Community Venture 2pm – 4.30pm on 25 November.

  Register for free below

All places for this webinar have now been filled.
Add your details to the form below to join the waitlist for future dates of this webinar.

Community Ownership: How to get started

  • An introduction to community ownership, including the sectors in which they operate and the different models and approaches.
  • A step-by-step exploration of how to set up a community business: community engagement, legal structures, governance models, finance and fundraising.


Cut the Crap: Making community leadership work

  • ‘Warts and all’ learning from high profile community-led organisations on the benefits and challenges of community leadership.
  • Connection with other community-led organisations, supporters, and funders who can offer practical support and guidance in response to your own specific questions or challenges.
  • Exploration of both the formal and much more informal ways community leadership emerges.
  • Support to start to work on your own practical challenges in committing to community leadership or trying to fund or support others to make it work.


Community Shares: Raising the Right Type of Finance For Your Community Venture

  • The main facets and features for using community shares to mobilise and finance enterprises serving a community purpose.
  • Key considerations concerning the business model, governance, community engagement, and the share offer proposition itself.
  • The requisite knowledge to undertake an effective share offer for a community enterprise you are involved with.

Community Ownership: How to get started

  • Knowledge about what’s going on in this exciting and expanding sector.
  • Understanding of how a community enterprise model might be applied in your area.
  • Knowledge of how community enterprises can be financed beyond grants.
  • Understanding of what the community enterprise start-up process looks like and what support is available.


Cut the Crap: Making community leadership work

  • A more rounded view of the opportunities and risks of community leadership.
  • A broader understanding of the different formal and informal ways of trying to make community leadership work, and how that might change over time.
  • New contacts and, hopefully, friends (we are gradually building a network around this topic).
  • Some practical ideas or next steps on your own personal challenges or opportunities.


Community Shares: Raising the Right Type of Finance For Your Community Venture

  • An excellent understanding of business models that support the use of equity / community shares in social enterprises.
  • Tools and techniques to mobilise and engage your community with a view to build membership and attract investment.
  • Broad knowledge of governance considerations for use of community shares with a focus on the co-operative model.
  • An awareness of best practice standards for community share offers in line with the Community Shares Unit’s Standard Mark.

Community Ownership: How to get started

  • Communities exploring whether a community enterprise model is suitable for their situation.
  • Groups looking to set up a community enterprise to save or maintain a community asset.
  • Practitioners and institutions actively supporting community enterprise through their role in the public or private sector.
  • Employees of local authorities and development bodies who are interested in the role of the community business within their work.


Cut the Crap: Making community leadership work

  • ‍Those involved in community leadership roles.
  • The organisations and funders trying to support.
  • Those prepared to be open about their experiences.
  • Those who have practical challenges they would like to work through with others.


Community Shares: Raising the Right Type of Finance For Your Community Venture

  • Founders of emerging and existing community businesses who are seeking new funding source.
  • Community activists exploring enterprise models to take on assets and deliver services in their localities.
  • Advisers and practitioners looking to support community groups through business and finance advice.
  • Policy makers and officers looking to create favourable conditions for community enterprise in their localities.

Community Ownership: How to get started

Mark Simmonds is the co-founder of Co-op Culture and Platform 6 Development Co-operative, through which he helps deliver business support to co-operatives across the UK. He is based in Calderdale, West Yorkshire where he is also a founder member of Pennine Community Power, the Fox and Goose Co-operative Pub and Heptonstall Allotment & Garden Society. Mark is a licensed community shares practitioner and is also the author of several start-up guides, including Co-operatives UK’s Simply Start-Up guide.


Nathan Brown is a Member of Co-op Culture, delivering support to co-operatives across the UK.  He is also a Member of Cooperantics and a support provider for the Plunkett Foundation, for whom he has also written guides for the community pubs network. He has been delivering support and training to co-operatives and community businesses for over 20 years. Nathan is a Licensed Community Shares Practitioner and has supported communities purchasing or managing pubs, woodlands, and community garden centres.

Cut the Crap: Making community leadership work

Bob Thust is the co-founder of Practical Governance providing hands-on governance support to organisations with a social purpose. He is a former Responsible Business Director at Deloitte UK and former Director of Programmes at the Power to Change Trust.  Above all he believes in the power of people and communities to find and determine their own solutions to the challenges that face them. He is a trustee of Local Trust and Treasurer of the Bevy community-owned pub in Brighton, where he spends far too much of his time, as well as a senior consultant for Numbers for Good and the Social Change Agency.


Community Shares: Raising the Right Type of Finance For Your Community Venture

Simon Borkin leads on the design and delivery of co-operative development programmes at Co-operatives UK, specialising in community shares and wider co-operative financing models. In this role, he has led the work of the Community Shares Unit since 2012, which promotes good practice and raises awareness of community shares as a sustainable funding mechanism for community enterprises.

Simon is also a board member at Friends of Stretford Public Hall – a Grade II listed heritage space in Manchester, owned and run by the local community. He led on their successful community share offer in 2017 which raised £250,000 to fund renovations to the hall’s wonderful Victorian ballroom. He has an MSc in Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship from Manchester Business School.


In partnership with

Joining Instructions

Terms and Conditions