Rural services

The 2018 Scottish Rural Parliament will take place in Stranraer in Dumfries and Galloway on 14th– 16th November. If you live in or are passionate about rural areas in Scotland, you can attend to learn and make your voice heard. This year's theme is "Taking Action".

The event brings together people from rural communities with decision-makers, for three days of celebration and exploration. Participants examine a wide-range of issues affecting rural communities and make recommendations for change.

Rural communities are coming together to improve their quality of life but feel as though they are becoming more remote, according to research from The Prince’s Countryside Fund and SRUC.

Following on from the 11th OECD Rural Development Conference in Edinburgh in April, Scotland House in Brussels went on to host the workshop  ‘Enhancing Innovation in Rural Areas: The Experience from Scotland’ in Brussels this June.

Scottish Rural Action and Disability Equality Scotland have joined forces with Jeane Freeman MSP to seek clarity on the legal status of the planned closures of 62 RBS branches across Scotland. The group has written to the Equalities and Human Rights Commission to question if the plans would be in breach of the Equalities Act 2010.  RBS plans to replace some of the branches with short and infrequent visits from mobile banking vans, which are not appropriate for many people with physical disabilities.

Scottish Rural Action want to know what people in rural areas think about the announced closure of RBS branches across Scotland.

Scottish Rural Action will take a full range of views collected to an evidence session at Scottish Affairs Committee at Westminster on 17 January 2018. They are carrying out a survey to gather views from across rural Scotland on the impact of branch closures on rural communities and their high streets.

Take the survey

Five exemplary projects have been selected as the winners of the 2017 European Broadband Awards.

The European Broadband Awards are open to all types of projects irrespective of the size, location, or technologies used. Forty-nine projects from 20 European Union countries applied for the European Broadband Awards 2017.

The European Commissioner for Regional Policy Corina Crețu and Commissioner for Agriculture & Rural Development, Phil Hogan awarded the five winners in Brussels.

The winners are:

Rural Wisdom Get-together

Outside the Box's Rural Wisdom project is exploring ways to make rural areas work better for older people. They’re holding a series of events across Scotland for anyone who is interested in this work to come together, to share thoughts, to hear from others and to build the network around the country.

They're pleased to be holding the third of these events in Lanark, hosted by their friends at Healthy Valleys.

Find out about the recent European Rural Parliament event held in Venhorst, Netherlands in this event report from Scottish Rural Action.

The village of Venhorst in Noord-Brabant did not exist until the early 20th. century when the municipality sold seven hectare plots to families wanting to settle and make a living. The nearest school was an hour’s journey away.

Woolfords, Auchengray and Tarbrax Improvement Foundation (WAT IF) are delighted to announce the signing of a Community Fibre Partnership agreement with BT which will see fast, fibre broadband extended to the Auchengray area.

Inspiring Rural Communities Together Conference 2017

The Plunkett Foundation know that rural life in the UK isn’t always easy, with the decline of vital services, the limited availability of jobs, affordable housing, public transport, adequate broadband and the rising cost of utilities, can mean for many people, living in a rural area presents a daily challenge.