Empowering Places through Community Business


Over the next five years, CLES will be working in partnership with Coops UK and NEF to support seven areas across England to catalyse networks of community businesses.

“Community businesses” are those that are owned and ran by communities themselves. This ensures that wealth stays rooted in places, with the benefits being enjoyed by the people that live and work there. The work, which is funded by Power to Change and led by Coops UK, will provide existing “catalyst organisations”- community-based organisations that are already well established- with the capacity support, grants and tools to grow the number of community businesses in these places. The places and organisations we will be working alongside are Bradford (Carlisle Business Centre), Grimsby (Centre 4), Hartlepool (Wharton Trust), Leicester (B-Inspired), Luton (Marsh Farm Futures), Wigan (Abram Ward Community Charity) and Plymouth (Real Ideas Organisation and Millfields Trust).

The aims is that the emerging place-based clusters of community businesses will, through collective action, play a major role in creating better places and reduce inequality.

Neil McInroy, CLES Chief Executive said “This work represents an amplification of the many good things which are happening, but how we need to go deeper and faster.  It’s a pleasure to work with partners who share CLES mission and are deeply collaborative in helping communities build a better economic and social future.”

You may also be interested in: