Community group in Wales offers shares to help fund purchase of local buildings

Community benefit company 4CG has already bought buildings in Cardigan using share schemes

Cardigan-based community group 4GC has bought several local buildings and converted them into community facilities
Cardigan-based community group 4GC has bought several local buildings and converted them into community facilities

Members of the community in Cardigan, West Wales, have managed to raise £20,000 in less than a month to help fund the purchase of local buildings for community use.

4CG, a community benefit company based in Cardigan, is hoping to secure enough support to purchase an old police station and court house through a community share offer. The group requires £250,000 to purchase the sites from the Dyfed Powys police authority.

The company submitted an offer for the sites at its shareholder meeting on 12 July and, if successful, it aims to redevelop the former police station into community offices and potentially a hostel. The court house building will be used for community activities.

4CG has already bought three shops, two warehouses and car parks, as well as two offices and a house in the Pwllhai area of Cardigan. The sites have since been redeveloped to create a range of community facilities including a children’s centre, market and low-cost car parks.

The latest set of buildings are being bought through a shareholder scheme, which allows investors to have a say on how purchased buildings are used on a one member, one vote basis. Shares can be bought for £200 each.

Cris Tomos, treasurer and board member of 4CG, said: "During our 2010 initial share offer we managed to raise more than £220,000 in shares and had people from afar as Australia and Cyprus purchasing them. We hope this current share offer will be as popular to allow us to purchase these additional buildings for local community offices, a tourism site and an opportunity to develop new jobs for local people."

He added: "We have produced comprehensive financial plans and wish to ensure that shareholders realise that we are a limited company and fully registered with the Financial Services Authority as a cooperative that ensures transparent voting rights of one member, one vote."

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