Scottish Rural Network - Review of 2018

James Rose

2018 was one of the busiest years in SRN’s history. We distributed news about rural development, produced content that shines a spotlight on our thriving rural economy, delivered events up and down the country and made a lot of new friends along the way. As we begin 2019, it's time to look back at the previous twelve months.

At the end of 2018 we produced our ​communications review of the year, a document that sets out all of our key pieces of work in 2018. You can view the full report here. Here are some of the highlights:

January - April 

  • The 11th OECD Rural Development Conference came to Edinburgh from 9-12 April 2018, and the SRN support unit led the UK in the organisation and the execution of the event. 442 delegates from 27 countries descended on Scotland’s capital to discuss how innovation can help rural areas respond to the challenges of globalisation, shifting trading patterns, and growing inequality. Read SRN's event report here, and view our video coverage of the event here. 
  • We released two films to promote the Agri-Environment Climate scheme  on the River Margins Enhancement Project and the Gartlea Farm Conservation Plan.
  • The Beef Efficiency Scheme was promoted in a new SRN film.
  • SRN helped to promote the launch of the Rural Innovation Support Service.

May - August

  • In the Spring and Summer of 2018, SRN put the focus on the youth of rural Scotland as part of our work to tie in with Scotland’s Year of Young People 2018. We partnered with project managers Jane Craigie Marketing and a host of other stakeholder organisations on the Rural Youth Project - the largest exercise in collecting the views of rural young people ever carried out in Scotland. The report was launched at a two-day 'ideas festival', supported by SRN.
  • Throughout August, SRN ran the Rural Youth August social media campaign, producing and sharing videos, interviews andfeatures that shone a light on Scotland’s rural young people. We profiled exciting rural youth projects, interviewed young people and decision makers and reported from inspiring events such as Amaze me LEADER. View content from the campaign here.
  • We produced a film on the first Rural Innovation Support Service group, looking at speeding up dairy breeding.
  • SRN headed to the Edinburgh Fringe to profile the Rural Touring Forum.
  • Subtitled versions of all 2017's SRDP on Film releases were produced.

September - December

  • In September the SRN partnered with Transport Scotland, Scottish Rural Action and transport expert Jenny Milne of JML Consulting to deliver the Rural Transport Convention in Inverness. This two-day event gathered together people living in rural areas, private and public sector organisations and policy makers to discuss the challenges and opportunities presented by transport in rural areas, feeding into the government's National Transport Strategy Review. Watch our short film from the event.
  • The Scottish Rural Parliament 2018 saw around 400 people from across rural Scotland gather in Stranraer for three days of debate, presentations, workshops, project visits and more.The SRN helped organise the event, putting together the programme of project visits by identifying local businesses and enterprises that were making a positive change in the rural community. You can view outputs from the event here:
  • We released a video case study on a LEADER-funded horticultural centre at Castlebank Park and a profile of the Wild Oaks Eco Campsite.
  • To promote the work of our colleagues in the new Islands Team, we produced an SRN Newsletter Islands special.
  • We hosted visits from Danish and Estonian delegations, organising visits to projects and businesses across rural Scotland. Links: &
  • SRN coordinated nominations for the ENRD Rural Inspiration Awards to find ten of the most inspiring rural projects and enterprises in Scotland.

We're looking forward to another action-packed year. If you have something you would like us to add to our website or social media channels, or want to get in contact about anything else, please contact us at