Consultation on next round of dormant assets funding launched 

20 July, 2022


The government is now consulting on how to distribute approximately £900m from dormant bank accounts. The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sports (DCMS) announced the 12-week public consultation last week and input will help to determine how the next tranche of assets should be spent. Under the current legislation, dormant assets in England must be dedicated to initiatives that focus on youth, financial inclusion and social investment. 

Since 2011 £892m has been released across the UK through the Dormant Asset Scheme. The government has made clear that the new pot of money “will not immediately become available and is expected to take several years to be released through to The National Lottery Community Fund (NLCF)”. 

Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries said that “now is the right time to look at how the scheme can deliver the greatest impact in light of the unprecedented context of the country’s recovery from Covid-19 and its wide-ranging implications for social and environmental priorities”. 

The consultation is welcoming views and suggestions on what causes should be supported through the scheme and as the country emerges from Covid-19 and is navigating the cost of living crisis.  It is recognised that there may be social or environmental causes that are worth considering as well as projects supporting young people. 

“In addition to considering whether to name specific purposes in secondary legislation, the Secretary of State may also consider whether to make an order that provides that there are to be no specific purposes. In that scenario, any dormant assets funding in England could be distributed for any social or environmental purpose (subject to complying with any policy directions given to NLCF by the Secretary of State).” 

Former charities minister Rob Wilson has said that he would like to see a “focus on charities coming together with local authorities, business and philanthropists to deliver big projects in left-behind areas”. 

He added: “A focus on large scale and long-term regeneration through enterprise, education, better housing and crime reduction - all led by charities, putting them front and centre to improve lives.”  

The Community Wealth Fund Alliance, a coalition of nearly 600 organisations from across civil society, public and private sectors, welcomed the move.  

Matt Leach, chief executive officer of Local Trust, a founding member of the alliance, said: “We warmly welcome the launch of this consultation process as an important first step towards rebuilding the ‘social scaffolding’ of the most ‘left behind’ areas.  And trusting local people to make the decisions about how best this can be achieved. 

“Community spaces, youth hubs, libraries, parks, community cafes, locally owned pubs, and recreational facilities. This is the stuff that helps bring life to communities.  And the evidence is that this is often the highest priority for local people when it comes to improving their neighbourhoods.”  

On a related matter, for an up-to-date list of assets of community value in Bristol, visit our resources page where we host the latest information produced by Bristol City Council.