Inspiring Business by Sharing Success


Far from being a nation of 1980’s NIMBYS, people today are looking to take action to make their own neighbourhoods better and forming a new generation of CIMBYs who support “community in my backyard.”

● 34 million “CIMBYS” want to take action to improve their local area

● Two-thirds (67%) in the East Midlands are frustrated in their local area and half (49%) ready to set up a community business to take power into their own hands

New research to mark the first day of Community Business Weekend (4th-7th May 2018, #CBwkd18) has revealed that over 34 million members of the public would like to see more community action to save local resources and provide local services. [1]

The majority surveyed in the East Midlands (75%) want to see local people take on the running of places and services neglected for so long - from pubs to hubs, shops to cinemas, farms to parks. Half (50%) are prepared to take action themselves to make this happen.

But the nation’s CIMBY desires are being held back as many claim that they don’t see enough investment in their local area, with services and spaces needlessly dying when local people are poised and willing to take action. For example, 65% in the East Midlands believe their local library is at risk of closure, half feel locally-run shops may close and more than a third (38%) have seen a local pub at risk from closing down.

The findings come on the first day of Community Business Weekend where hundreds of community businesses around the country will be throwing open their doors and encouraging local people to seize the opportunity to be the difference in their communities.

Peter Jenkins, Interim Chief Executive at Power to Change, explains:

“This research highlights the concern people in the East Midlands have about the loss of local spaces and services and the lack of community power.

“Community businesses are a great example of local people taking power into their own hands. Every day tens of thousands of people get up and go to work at one of the thousands of community businesses in England.  Hundreds of thousands of us shop, visit or benefit from them directly but they are still relatively unknown.

“That’s why Community Business Weekend is so important. It shines a light on these community-run gems that protect not only much needed services and spaces to communities but boost local economies and reinvest the profits for the benefit of local people.”

There are around 7,000 community businesses in England [2] with a combined market income of £1.2bn. Almost a third (29%) are born of frustration at a lack of local level action by government, but the majority are set up with more positive motives [3]. Almost three quarters (72%) of community businesses are set up to help bring the community together and 60% are established to meet the specific needs of the local community.

This burgeoning sector ranges from community-owned bakeries to community-run ferries, Victorian bath houses to Victorian piers, oyster farms to lobster hatcheries, all of which are reinvesting in the local area to help benefit local people and enhance local economies across the country.

 Community Business Weekend offers a unique opportunity for community businesses across England to open their doors and for local people to visit and see how they can get involved and address challenges they face together. Those joining in include community farms and gardens, community shops, hubs, sports clubs and pubs. What they all have in common is that they are accountable to their community and that the profits they generate deliver positive local impact.

 To find out more about events happening near you, visit

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