The Localism Act defines a building or a piece of land in a local authority’s area that furthers social well being and the social interests of the local community. If approved, the application will be held on record for a period of five years. For the duration of this period, the owner of the asset must inform the council of any intention to sell the stadium. Informing the council of this decision triggers a community countdown period of six months, which gives community groups or organisations the time to raise vital funds for a credible bid prior to being placed on the open market.
Speaking following the submission of the application to Birmingham City Council, Blues Trust chairman Steve McCarthy said, “The Asset of Community Value provides us with a real opportunity and we fully recognise the value of the application to our members. It highlights our intention to bring about sustainability at Birmingham City Football Club. It is a small, but positive step this positive step forward in a time of great uncertainty and challenge”.
The application process can last for up to two months. The Trust expects that a decision will be reached by the end of August 2013 at the latest. Further updates will be communicated in due course.