How communities can shape and run local services

How to submit a Expression Of Interest (EOI) to run and shape local services, who can submit an EOI and the reasons why an EOI is rejected.

The Community Right to Challenge is a right under the Localism Act 2011 that gives communities the opportunity to help shape and run local services.

It links well with our commitment to work with communities (as part of the Localism agenda) to provide better decision making, better local services and the more effective allocation of resources.

Getting started

Under the Community Right to Challenge an Expression of Interest (EOI) to take on the provision of a county council service can be submitted.

If successful, it will lead to a procurement exercise for the provision of that service.

The following bodies can submit an EOI:

  • a voluntary or community body
  • a charitable trust or body
  • a town or parish council or
  • two or more employees of the county council

Read more about the bodies who can submit an EOI in section 1.4 to 1.13 of the GOV.UK statutory guidance.

Bodies can also submit an EOI in partnership.

Find out more about working in partnership in section 1.14 and 1.15 of the GOV.UK statutory guidance.

You need to include the following information so that you can be fully and fairly assessed:

  • identification of the service concerned and the geographical area to which it relates
  • information on financial resources
  • evidence of capability to provide/assist in providing the service
  • detail of outcomes that would be achieved including:
    a) how social, economic or environmental wellbeing would be promoted/improved and
    b) how service users needs would be met

Where an EOI proposes provision of service by a partnership and/or through the use of sub-contractors, information on financial resources and evidence of capability to deliver a service will need to be provided for each member of the consortium and/or each sub-contractor.

Section 4.2 of the statutory guidance offers more detail.

EOI form

To help ensure you provide the correct information you may wish to use our EOI submission form (Word, 300 KB); although you aren't obliged to do so.

The purpose of this form is to help you in submitting an EOI under Part 5, Chapter 2 of the Localism Act 2011, The Community Right to Challenge (Expressions of Interest and Excluded Services)(England) Regulations 2012.

You can also send us any supporting documents.

Submitting your EOI

You can submit your EOI to righttochallenge@suffolk.gov.uk.

Or send your EOI form to:

Pam Oakshott
Procurement Manager
Procurement and Contract Management
Suffolk County Council
Floor 2, Constantine House
5 Constantine Road
Ipswich
Suffolk
IP1 2DH

Please note that any EOI submitted during the term of a contract will only be noted and retained for consideration prior to any extension for that contract being approved.

After we receive your Expression of Interest (EOI) we'll reply within 30 days explaining how long it will take for a decision to be made and when you will be notified of our decision.

We'll only contact you sooner if:

  • we need more information about your EOI
  • we think your EOI needs to be modified or changed in some way

When will a decision be made?

The maximum time we will take to make a decision is 4 months from receipt of your EOI.

We'll aim to make a decision on your EOI as soon as possible; however, the time needed to decide may vary due to the complexity of your submission.

What happens after my EOI has been accepted

We'll contact you about when the procurement exercise will begin; depending on the size and complexity of the service within your EOI.

The procurement exercise will be open and will not favour you as the body that submitted the successful EOI.

If we decide not to accept your EOI we'll contact you and explain the reasons why. 

The reasons could be:

  • it has not been made by a 'relevant body' listed in who can submit an EOI?
  • it contains inaccurate or inadequate material
  • it relates to a service that is not the responsibility of the county council
  • it relates to a service that the county council has already agreed will be delivered by another organisation
  • the submission is considered "frivolous or vexatious"
  • the service is already subject to a procurement exercise
  • the EOI is likely to breach statutory duties

Please read section 6 of the guidance from GOV.UK for the full list and explanation.