Big Society Capital responds to Labour’s strategy document on civil society

Following the release of the Labour Party’s new strategy document, From Paternalism to Participation: Putting civil society at the heart of national renewal, Cliff Prior, CEO of Big Society Capital, sets out the work currently being undertaken in the more deprived areas of the UK.


Big Society Capital has maintained a focus on supporting communities since its inception in 2012, with over 1,141 social enterprises and charities across the UK having accessed repayable finance through our social fund managers or Charity Bank. Of the 1,141, a total of 73% are located in 50% of the most deprived areas of the UK, and 83% operate outside of London or nationally.

This work is set to continue, as alongside other investors, Big Society Capital has now made a total of £1.7 billion of new capital available to organisations with a social mission.

Commenting, Cliff Prior, CEO of Big Society Capital, said:

“Big Society Capital wholeheartedly agrees with the emphasis placed on communities in Labour’s new strategy; communities and place are at the heart of our approach. To this end we worked closely with the Office of Civil Society to help establish Access – The Foundation for Social Investment (Access), and to invest alongside it. The funding provided by Access fills what used to be a crucial gap in the sector, making smaller loans averaging £64,000 available to social enterprises and charities.

“This year, together with Access, we launched a new social investment programme called Local Access. This programme will provide a blend of grant and repayable investment worth a minimum of £33 million across at least five places in England. The programme aims to provide autonomy to the local partnerships, and forms part of our vision to tackle poverty and inequality by building partnerships that will develop vibrant local social economies.

“We support any initiative seeking to raise the profile of social impact investment in the UK, and making it more widely available. Big Society Capital remains committed to supporting the growth of the sector.”



The full document can be found on The Labour Party’s website here.

Further information about the Local Access project can be found on Big Society Capital’s website here.


Big Society Capital improves the lives of people in the UK by connecting social investment to social enterprises and charities.

We know that investment can help social enterprises and charities achieve more. We believe the greatest chance to improve lives comes when investors and enterprises are both motivated by social mission.

We engage with investors, fund managers, social enterprises and charities to make it easier to use social investment. With our co-investors, we have made over £1.7bn of new capital available to organisations with a social mission, through investments into fund managers and social banks. We have a special focus on: providing homes for people in need; supporting communities to improve lives; and early action to prevent problems.


Kathryn Mortimer, Press Officer, Big Society CapitalT: 020 7186 2537, E: