Reports highlight impact of community enterprises

Pastries inside community owned shop
Norette Ferns

The Plunkett Foundation have published two reports highlighting the impact of community owned shops and cooperative pubs in the UK.

The reports show that by the end of 2016, there were 46 cooperative pubs trading in the UK, including six pubs that opened that year. There are 338 community owned shops in the UK, with 31 in Scotland. These shops provide vital services to 1,400 remote rural communities and have created 1,114 paid jobs and 9,605 volunteer positions.

The reports highlight the performance and impact of these enterprises and analyse the innovative ways in which these organisations respond to the needs of their communities and in return how the communities support them. 

James Alcock, General Manager at Plunkett Foundation, said:

"Community cooperatives are a great leveller – they bring people together of all ages, backgrounds, interests, and give them a purpose to interact. This can benefit new residents who want to meet their neighbours, young parents who feel isolated at home, teenagers seeking work and life experience, the retired seeking opportunities to remain active, and those who live alone or are carers and have no other way of meeting people. Put simply, community shops and co-operative pubs reduce social isolation and loneliness."

The reports are based on data sourced from the Financial Conduct Authority and Companies House, electronic questionnaires and follow-up telephone surveys, and additional information held by Plunkett Foundation on every community shop and co-operative pub. The data collection, analysis, and written reports were undertaken by Plunkett Foundation and supported by data provided by Co‑operatives UK. This work was funded by The Power to Change Research Institute. 

Find out more on the Plunkett Foundation website