There are a number of ways that communities can express their views about how local services are shaped and how they are run.

By law, communities also have a right to challenge how local services are delivered where they believe they can carry them out differently and better. Local authorities are also required by law to consider the value and the wellbeing of the local services that they commission.

Community Right to Challenge

The Community Right to Challenge is one of the ways that communities that can play a bigger role in shaping and running local services.

The right allows relevant organisations to submit an expression of interest in running a local service. If the expression of interest is accepted, the local authority must run a procurement exercise (a tender process) for the service. The interested organisation, and other local organisations, then have the opportunity to bid to run the service for the community.

Find out more about the Community Right to Challenge.

Local services case studies

Supporting legislation

Social Value Act: The Public Services (Social Value) Act 2012 places a legal duty on public bodies to consider the social, economic and environmental well being of an area in making decisions on commissioning and procurement. Read more >>

Best value statutory guidance: Local authorities have a duty to consider what might be ‘best value’ under the Local Government Act 1999 and the Best Value Statutory Guidance. Read more >>

Keep it Local for better services

Locality’s Keep it Local campaign calls for locally-commissioned and delivered public services which provide substantially better outcomes and value than standardised, one-size-fits-all services.

Community-focused services commissioned and delivered at a local level and built around the needs of local people are more responsive to local and individual needs and provide more cost-effective solutions.

Find out more about the benefits by reading Locality’s Keep it Local campaign report.

Keep it Local for better value
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Past programmes

Our Place programme

The Our Place programme looked at transforming local services by ‘re-shaping’ them or providing them differently where a gap had been identified.

Communities and local partners worked together to develop a plan for how services could be delivered with increased community involvement and control.

First Steps programme

First Steps gave small community groups the freedom to develop action plans to improve their neighbourhood.

They received the support to decide upon practical actions to make positive changes in their community. 115 communities were given the opportunity to work together to decide what they do and don’t like and what can be changed.


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Community Right to Challenge step-by-step

Take our step-by-step tour of the Community Right to Challenge

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Need help or advice?

Visit the My Community Help Centre

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