As part of the government's drive to reduce the gap between England's poorest communities and the country as a whole, the 'National Strategy for Neighbourhood Renewal', published in 2001, sought to influence change at a local level.
The Neighbourhood Renewal Programme funded the establishment of Community Empowerment Networks in each of the 88 areas, which included Bradford district. This was to fund the work of local strategic partnerships (LSPs) to improve services and target resources more effectively. LSPs are partnerships of public, private, community and voluntary organisations working together to improve local life.
Initially Keighley Voluntary Services (now known as Keighley & Ilkley Community Action or KIVCA) acted as CNet's accountable body and CNet shared their premises in Keighley. In 2003 CNet moved to new offices at Frizinghall in Bradford.
In 2007 CNet successfully went independent and became a company limited by guarantee.
In 2010 CNet achieved charitable status.