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Britain’s countryside was created and is characterised by its strong rural communities, and the Countryside Alliance is campaigning hard to ensure their future. Any number of issues threaten their survival, and we lobby to ensure that any legislation passed promotes a sustainable countryside for both those who live in rural areas and those who visit them. In this section you can read about various topical issues of interest to rural communities from policing to broadband, 4G, planning and affordable housing.


Welcoming the Government's big plans for the countryside

Thursday, 20 August 2015

Countryside Alliance Executive Chairman Barney White-Spunner writes: Today's Daily Telegraph carries a piece by Chancellor George Osborne and Environment Secretary Liz Truss in which they reveal a "Rural Productivity Plan" which is intended to bring about a wholesale boost for our countryside across planning, infrastructure, education, transport and local government. Read the piece, "With our plan, the countryside can become Britain’s engine of growth" here. The shopping list contained in the report is to be welcomed as it features several of our campaigning priorities from broadband and mobile coverage to transport and affordable housing.

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Six-day-a-week postal service vital for rural homes and businesses

Tuesday, 16 June 2015

The Countryside Alliance welcomes a “fundamental review” of the regulation of Royal Mail to secure the Universal Service Obligation (USO), which was announced today (16 June) by Ofcom. The move follows the withdrawal of Royal Mail competitor Whistl from the direct delivery of letters, however competition remains strong in other parts of the market, including parcels.

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Cheaper fuel for 17 remote areas of the UK

Friday, 29 May 2015

Tax rebates, that mean cheaper fuel at garages in some of the most remote areas of the UK from Sunday (31 May), will make a real difference to people who live and work in those areas, says the Countryside Alliance.
The project, which will apply to garages in 17 postcodes across the Scottish Highlands and Argyll and Bute, and in Cumbria, Northumberland, North Yorkshire and Devon, will allow those petrol stations to claim back 5p per litre in fuel duty, allowing them to drop the price of their fuel.

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Nominate in the Natwest everywoman Awards 2015

Thursday, 14 May 2015

The UK’s longest running awards programme that celebrates the achievements of Britain’s growing legion of female entrepreneurs has launched its nomination drive for the 13th year Nominate in the Natwest everywoman Awards 2015. The Countryside Alliance has long been a supporter of these Awards and encourages rural businesswomen to get involved. Nominations can be made here. The Awards' prime purpose is to identify and celebrate the achievements of the many women who are running successful businesses whilst providing employment and training opportunities. The Awards have attracted thousands of entries and dozens of finalists and winners have seen the benefits of entering everywoman’s flagship programme.

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Protocol for rural bank closures welcomed by Countryside Alliance

Thursday, 26 March 2015

The Countryside Alliance has welcomed the announcement today (26 March), by the Business Secretary Vince Cable, that the major high street banks, consumer groups and the government have signed up to an agreement to work with customers and communities to minimise the impact of branch closures and put in place alternative banking services.

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“Fly-grazing Bill” is passed

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Legislation that makes it easier for land owners, local authorities and welfare charities to take action over dumped and fly-grazed horses has been passed.
The Control of Horses Bill was given its Third Reading today, 18 March, and will become law before the General Election.

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Universal postal service is essential to the countryside, says Alliance

Thursday, 12 March 2015

The Countryside Alliance welcomes today’s report (12 March) from the BIS Select Committee on Competition in the postal services sector and the Universal Service Obligation (USO) and its recognition that the USO is an “essential service” that needs to be protected by Ofcom.
As our submission outlined, the USO plays an important role in rural communities and if it was scrapped could lead to unfair costs being placed on rural businesses and an increase in social isolation. This is why we fully support the call from the Committee seeking reassurance from Ofcom that they are able to take swift action to protect the USO.

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Major review of UK digital communications markets a welcome move

Thursday, 12 March 2015

The Countryside Alliance welcomes a major review of the UK’s digital communications markets, announced today (12 March) by Ofcom. Countryside Alliance head of policy Sarah Lee said: “This review is the first in a decade. The Alliance has long been concerned that the current market creates a communications monopoly which is not good for competition and is failing to deliver the ambitions of this government to be a world leader in digital connectivity.

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NatWest everywoman Award winner on encouraging rural businesswomen

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

In late 2013 Mandy Scott, Managing Director of AA Flags, the international bespoke flag manufacturers based in County Durham, won the NatWest everywoman rural award, which the Countryside Alliance supports. We have spoken to Mandy about what the experience has meant, how business is going and why other female rural entrepreneurs should put themselves forward for this prestigious scheme. You will be able to read more about the Awards in our forthcoming Spring magazine.

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 Innovative broadband pilots are a good first step, says Countryside Alliance

Monday, 9 February 2015

The Countryside Alliance (CA) welcomes the Government’s confirmation today (9 February 2015) that seven pilot projects are on track to bring superfast broadband to the most difficult to connect communities in the UK.

The Government aims to provide  speeds of 24Mbps to 95% of the UK by 2017 and two million more homes and businesses now have access to superfast broadband than had two years ago.

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