“While some UK government documents contained a vision for thriving rural communities in a living, working, countryside and stimulated discussions; they have not necessarily provided a platform or roadmap for change.”
How is the UK government’s ‘rural policy’ going?
The UK is no longer in the EU, but to what extent can it still look to the Continent for ideas?
Here’s some comment from Jessica Sellink:
Building a long-term vision for the countryside – what can we take from #Rural2040?
On 30 June 2021, the European Commission published a long-term vision for rural areas. What does the vision contain, will it help rural communities and businesses reach their full potential in the coming decades, and will it raise the profile of the countryside amongst policy makers? Jessica Sellick investigates.
Under the strapline of ‘a vibrant tapestry of life and landscapes, Europe’s rural areas provide us with our food, homes, jobs, and essential ecosystem services’, the European Commission recently published a long-term vision for the EU’s rural areas up to 2040. Why and how has the European Commission developed this vision, what does it contain, how will it be implemented, and what can rural areas outside of the EU take from it?
From the fair deal for rural communities published back in November 2000 and the Rural Strategy Defra published in 2004, through to the Government-wide Rural Statement in 2012; all have sought to reaffirm the Government’s commitment to rural communities. And yet while some of these documents contained a vision for thriving rural communities in a living, working, countryside and stimulated discussions; they have not necessarily provided a platform or roadmap for change. Since 2019 the Rural Services Network (RSN) has been calling on Government to take the lead and work with interested organisations to produce a long-term and funded Rural Strategy for England.
In a speech in July 2019, the President of the European Commission, Ursula Von der Leyen described rural areas as being “the fabric of our society and the heartbeat of our economy. They are a core part of our identity and our economic potential. We will cherish and preserve our rural areas and invest in the future”. Will #Rural2040 lead to a new and reinvigorated agenda for change or fail to address the different opportunities, challenges an barriers affecting European rural communities? Watch this space…
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