Community groups invited to bid for old Portland Post Office

Dorset Echo: Community groups invited to bid for old Portland Post Office Community groups invited to bid for old Portland Post Office

Community groups have a chance to bid for The Old Post Office in Fortuneswell, Portland.

Weymouth & Portland Borough Council would like to hear from anyone interested in buying 79 Fortuneswell, Portland by Tuesday 28 January.

In May 2013, The Old Post Office, Fortuneswell on Portland was successfully listed on Weymouth & Portland Borough Council’s list of assets of community value.

Using new community rights under The Localism Act 2011 and The Assets of Community Value (England) Regulations 2012, local community and voluntary bodies and parish councils can identify and nominate land and buildings that are important to them such as a village shop, local pub, community centre or library and nominate them for inclusion on a list of community assets maintained by the local council.

A community asset is a piece of land or a building whose use furthers the social wellbeing or social interests of the local community and could continue to do so. Community assets may be owned by anybody and some assets are excluded including residential property.

If a listed asset of community value comes up for sale, long term rent or assignment there is an initial pause of six weeks for a community body to decide whether or not to exercise a right to bid for the asset. If the council does not receive a notice of intention to bid, the landowner is free to dispose of the asset. If a community body notifies their intention to bid this triggers a pause of up to six months so the organisations can raise money and bid to buy the asset. This means groups get a right of first refusal or have the opportunity to buy the asset at below market value.

The Old Post Office has been advertised on the council’s website dorsetforyou.com and interested parties have just over two weeks left to bid on the property.

Weymouth & Portland Borough Council Management Committee Chairman Cllr Mike Goodman said: “The council would like to hear from any community group who is interested in buying this property by 28 January.

“This is a great scheme to make sure that properties and land that are community assets are retained for the benefit of the local community.”

Local organisations should check to ensure that they qualify under the Community Right to Bid and notify their intention to bid for The Old Fortuneswell Post Office, Portland by contacting: The Head of Community Planning and Development, Weymouth & Portland Borough Council, North Quay, Weymouth, DT4 8TA, telephone 01305 252358 or e-mail communityplanning@westdorset-weymouth.gov.uk For more information visit www.dorsetforyou.com/community-right-to-bid/west/weymouth-and-portland

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