Our first share offer is now closed. Please follow us our social media channels to keep up to date with upcoming share offers.

Your questions answered about Common Ground Against Homelessness and our share offer

Are Community Shares fully at risk?

As with all investments, your captial is at risk. You could lose some or all of the money you subscribe. You have no right to compensation from the Financial Services Compensation Scheme, nor any right of complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service. Please don’t invest any money you can’t afford to lose.

What are Community Shares?

Community Shares are withdrawable shares that cannot be sold, traded or transferred between Members, unlike shares in a typical company.

All Members are entitled to one vote – regardless of how many shares they hold. Members can be paid interest on their shares if the Board believe it would be sensible to do so, and can also withdraw their shareholding, along with any interest accrued, again subject to the approval of the board.

How can I invest?

We are running this share offer through the Ethex website.


Ethex will contact you to arrange for you to make a payment to them by cheque of bank transfer and will hold the funds until the project is either successful and they will pass the money to us, or unsuccessful in which case they will give you your money back.

What is the minimum and maximum investment?

The minimum investment is £500 and the maximum possible under UK law is £100,000 per person or organisation.

Who can invest?

Anyone over the age of 16 can invest (but only people aged 18 or above can serve as directors).

Can organisations and businesses subscribe for Community Shares?

Yes. A representative of that organisation will need to become a member of the society as nominee for their organisation/business.

Can people club together to buy shares?

Yes, but as with organisations, you’ll have to nominate a member of your group to be the named shareholder in our share register.

Will I get a Share Certificate?

Everyone who invests will receive a community share certificate.

What if the society isn’t financially successful enough to survive?

If we did become insolvent, the ability of investors to recoup the funds they have invested would depend on firstly the value we (or the appointed insolvency practitioners) could get for the assets of the society and secondly, the value of our debts at that point.

In the event of our insolvency or orderly winding-up, the proceeds from the sale of those assets and our cash would firstly pay off all our creditors, and if there were any funds left at that point, would be used to pay back shareholders as much of their investment as they have outstanding as possible, on a pro-rata basis.

As we are a charity, should there be any surplus after returning funds to investors this would have to be given to another charity or to enable charitable objects. This cannot be changed by members and is enforced by charity law.

What happens if I didn’t get all my investment back?

Although we are registered as a society with The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the sale of withdrawable shares in the society is not regulated by the FCA. Like many investments, these Community Shares are at risk and you could lose some or all of the money you invest.

Unlike deposits with high street banks, Community Share are not covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme, nor is there any right of complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service. If you are considering investing a significant amount then you may wish to seek independent financial advice before doing so.

Can my investment be gift aided?

As this is an investment, it isn’t eligible for gift aid to be claimed, which is only possible with donations. If you wish for some or all of your money to be classed as a non-refundable donation on which we could be able to claim gift aid, please get in touch.

Can I sell my shares?

No. This investment is in withdrawable share capital which cannot be transferred, sold or given to anyone else, except on your death. You can tell us in advance who you wish to transfer your investment upon your death, and we can transfer the first £5,000 of your investment to them; any investment above £5000 requires your beneficiary to be explicitly named in your will. If you do not nominate anyone, then the Board will rely on the instructions given by your executors.

It is also possible to leave your shares to either Rowan Alba, or Common Ground. If you wish to do so, please contact us to inform us of this.

Can shares increase in value?

Shares cannot rise in value, so there will never be a capital gain. They may be reduced in value if our auditors instruct us to do so if they believe that the value of our assets has fallen.

What will you do with my personal details and data?

Your personal details as submitted on the application form will be held by the society and used in accordance with the provisions of the rules and of the 2014 Co-operative and Community Benefit Societies Act. Only members can inspect the members’ register and view members’ names and addresses (but not how much they have invested) but the society will not share, sell or provide my details to any other individual or organisation and will ensure compliance with the GPDR regulation in accordance with its responsibility as a data controller.

What happens if you can’t purchase the Peffermill property?

We will purchase an equivalent property to lease to Rowan Alba.