How does the moratorium work?

The interim moratorium period

Upon written notification from an owner of their intention to enter into a relevant disposal of the land, ECDC will update the list of Assets of Community Value detailing:

  • that notice has been received
  • the date on which ECDC received the notice and
  • the end dates for the interim moratorium period
  • the full moratorium period and protection period

ECDC will also notify in writing the person who made the nomination and publicise all of these details in the area where the land is situated. 

The date of receipt of notification from an owner triggers an interim moratorium period of 6 weeks.  In this time the owner cannot sell the asset (unless it falls within one of the exemptions or the sale is to a community interest group). 

During the interim moratorium period a community interest group (CIG) which would be eligible in the first instance to nominate an asset may request in writing to be treated as a potential bidder for the asset.  If this occurs the full moratorium period comes into force.

If no request from a CIG is received, ECDC will notify the owner to that effect, whereupon the owner is free to dispose of the asset on the open market. 

No further moratorium will apply for the remainder of a protected period lasting 18 months commencing from the same date as when the owner notified the local authority of wishing to sell.

The full moratorium period

Upon receipt of a written request from a CIG to be treated as a potential bidder, the full moratorium period of six months applies, starting from the date ECDC receives notification from the land owner of their intention to enter into a relevant disposal.  The owner may not dispose of their asset during the full moratorium period (except as permitted in the LA 2011 and Regulations). 

The owner may only sell the asset during the full moratorium period to a CIG that either did or would have been eligible to trigger the full moratorium.

If no bids are received from a CIG within the 6 month moratorium the owner may sell the asset on the open market.  No further moratorium period can be triggered until 18 months after receipt from the owner’s notice of the intention to dispose of the asset.

Upon sale of the asset the new owner must provide ECDC with their details.  ECDC will then update the list of ‘Assets of Community Value’ accordingly.