This website was developed as part of Birmingham City Council's Community Asset Transfer Development Programme 2009-10. Here you can find the story of two pilot projects and lessons learnt on asset transfer. There's also information on our new CAT Protocol.
Theresa Mcilkenny recently became a director at Norton hall after years benefiting from the services it provides for her and her son. Here she shares her thoughts on why community run places have particular strengths…
Becoming a director seemed like a natural progression, it allows us to help them understand what users expect from Norton Hall
You can only be as happy as you children, these place allows me to go out and what I want to do, that makes me happy.
The staff here are very committed to the children, to their activities to their education, it feels like a very family atmosphere. If ever you’ve got anything you want to talk about they don’t dismiss it out of hand.
I didn’t want to live on benefits, wanted to be in work. I had misgivings about leaving my son anywhere, but they made me feel very comfortable. In the end Richard was learning so much by being here he sometimes didn’t want to come home.
People don’t understand that places like Norton Hall can be life changing. It was life – changing for me. It allowed me to make things better in my life.
Interview at the Norton hall open day on July 11th 2010, Stevie Prior is the Norton Hall director who’s been involved in much of the negotiation over Community Asset Transfer. Here’s a sumary of her thoughts..
“Delighted to have got to this stage, it’s been an “interesting process” and very useful “learning curve”
there has to be a good relationship with city council officers
there is a tremendous amount of work involved and you have to allow for that
some elements – like legal aspect and dealing with the council in new ways gets “extremely serious and at times quite stressful”
I think we’ve emerged a more robust organisation
it’s enabled us to progress, which is what it was partly about anyway.
there is a need for council officers to understand a little more about community development
Two Norton Hall mums, Shazia and Shabnam share their thoughts on Norton Hall, what it means to them and their families and the “new look”. This short interview is a measure of how deeply people value this community lead place.
Norton Hall open day on July 11th 2010 was a wonderful opportunity for the community to see round the new work on the building and remind themselves of why they value the place. This short film has contributions from Councillors, residents and the team at Norton Hall.
Karen Cheney has been the co-ordinator of the Community Asset Transfer Development Programme as part of her job as Senior Manager – Community Empowerment Projects Lead in the Neighbourhood and Communities Team of Birmingham City Council – Constituency Services. Below she talks very clearly about what the programme has achieved Read the rest of this entry »
Iftikar Karim has been involved with Asset Transfer since 2002. As a board member of Norton Hall Children and Family Centre he has helped the organisation navigate taking on a 50 year lease of their building from Birmingham City Council and then undergo a £250,00 renovation.
Here he talks about the lessons he has learnt and the advice he would give to other community groups and local authorities:
What are the benefits of Community Asset Transfer?
The Community Asset Transfer programme has helped Norton Hall focus on it’s future. When the organisation first looked for funding it was for a more ambitious plan to change much of the building.
Some parts of that plan had to be shelved, but since building work began the organisation has been looking for ways to follow through on all the work. Here Suzanne Knipe talks about what else is now planned.