Community Shares

1 Nov 2018 - 09:04

The Business Plan for the development of Shambellie House as a centre for day and short residential courses has set out an ambitious target of £6.1m for the capital development works. Once these are completed then the Business Plan predicts that after three years the project will break even and be cash positive by the fifth year.

The trust has now embarked on a programme of seeking grant aid from a large range of organisations and this is not expected to be completed until the end of 2019.  It is clear that the scale of funding required will require a cocktail of funding from a large number of agencies, charities etc. 

Shambellie House Trust as a company limited by Guarantee the Trust (with charitable status) is not able to issue shares.  Recently the Scottish Government has provided support for the concept of Community Shares through the creation of Community Shares Scotland.

Community Shares refers to withdrawable share capital which can only be issued by co-operative societies, community benefit societies and charitable community benefit societies.  To find out more about Community Shares click HERE

In order to be in a position to offer the opportunity to invest in the project through Community Shares then the Trust will have to change its legal structure.  As a registered charity the Trust can move to become a charitable community benefit society.  This will still see the organisation registered with the Scottish Charity Registrar (OSCR) but it would be regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority rather than Companies House as present.

The new structure would see all of the key elements of the Trust replicated in that it would be run by members, have an asset lock and would retain the exiting Objects.

The Board has been in discussion with Community Shares Scotland and have concluded that this is the right way forward for the project.  As a first step the Board is seeking an “in principle’ decision by the members to enable this process to be further developed.  It is recognised that at this stage there is insufficient detail to enable a formal decision to be made – that must await the work on developing a new set of Rules for the organisation as well as consulting with the regulators.  

When this is complete, and the Board are satisfied that this is the best way forward they will call an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) to consider a special resolution to change the legal structure to a charitable community benefit society.

The Board has therefore agreed to put to the members at the AGM the following resolution

“That the members agree in principle to convert Shambellie House Trust to a charitable community benefit society and to then develop a community shares offer”

The Board will pursue this option if it receives support from at last 75% of those members attending and voting at the AGM