The Staverton Wildlife Conservation Society was formed in Dec 2014 to protect the Staverton Nature Reserve from sale into commercial ownership. The society is established as a Community Benefit Society under the Cooperative and Community Benefits Act 2014 and is registered as a charity with HMRC.
Membership is open to everyone resident in the parish and neighbouring parishes on payment of a once off nominal subscription of £1. Each member has one vote at general meetings and the membership elects the management committee. This structure will ensure that it embraces the whole local community as stakeholders and owners of its assets.
Community Benefit Societies are governed by the Cooperative Movement and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. The Society has an ‘asset lock’ in its constitution that ensures its assets are held for the benefit of the members, that is the local community, in perpetuity.
The society is funded by donations raised from Parishioners and other supporters, and by grants. Most of the initial £16,000 required to buy the Nature Reserve has now been raised, with just £1,500 still needed to pay off the interest free loan the Society received to make the initial purchase possible.