The community asset transfer of leisure facilities in the UK: a review and research agenda.

Geoff Nichols, Lindsay Findlay-King*, Deborah Forbes

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)
32 Downloads (Pure)


This paper reviews recent work on community asset transfers (CAT): a transfer of management of facilities from the public sector to the third sector, largely led by volunteers. The emergence of CATs is placed in the context of the development of community organisations and their relation to the state. Transfer has been stimulated by cuts in local government budgets since 2010. The review focusses on leisure facilities because these are non-statutory and so more vulnerable to cuts in public expenditure. The experience of CATs is reviewed, including: the motivations of local government and volunteers; the transfer process and management of CATs post-transfer; and the market position of facility types. The methodological approaches and theoretical frameworks used in research are contrasted; in particular, how these have balanced agency and structure in analysing a contested neoliberalist discourse. The practicalities of research in this area are considered before concluding with research questions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1159-1172
Number of pages14
Issue number6
Early online date3 Sept 2020
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2020


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