Opinion Former Article

Countryside Alliance: A week left to nominate in the ‘Rural Oscars'

There is still a week left in which to nominate rural heroes in the Countryside Alliance Awards, nicknamed “The Rural Oscars”. Thousands of nominations have already been received for businesses across Britain, making this the Awards’ busiest year to date. Nominate now at www.countrysideallianceawards.org.uk

The Awards, now in their seventh year, are the Countryside Alliance’s celebration of communities, produce, enterprise and rural heritage. Voted for by the public, they recognise and honour those who routinely go the extra mile for their community and help to promote rural life. The Awards start regionally and build towards a national championship which will be held at Parliament in early 2012.

Community-run initiatives are having a really strong resurgence and butchers are valued hugely by their customers. Farm shops are also a popular choice for nomination reflecting the continuing trend for supporting local farmers and recognising that seasonal, local produce cannot be beaten.

The five Award categories are:
Local Food Award
The Daily Telegraph Village Shop/ Post Office Award
Enterprise Award
Butcher Award
Hunter Rural Hero

Countryside Alliance Awards Director Jill Grieve said: “Nominations are pouring in for valued businesses the length and breadth of the country but we know we have only scratched the surface of people deserving praise and reward for all they do. I would urge everyone who supports our local farmers, businesses and communities to have their say and nominate their favourites. These Awards are a positive shop window for rural enterprise and provide a morale boost and national recognition for our hardworking small businesses.”

Ends…

Notes to editors:
Nominations can be made at www.countryside-alliance.org.uk until Friday 21st October
Case studies from any region can be provided
Britain has been divided into 10 regions for the Awards. Each region will declare a winner in January 2011.
Regional winners go forward to the grand final, judged by a national panel, and will be invited to attend the National Championships at Parliament in March 2012, where the 2011 national champions will be announced.
The winners in 2010 were:
Local Food Award: Farrington's Farm Shop, Farrington Gurney, Bristol www.farringtons.co.uk 01761 452266
Village Shop / Post Office Award: Yarpole Community Shop Association and Post Office, Yarpole, Leominster, Herefordshire 01568 780148 www.yarpoleshop.co.uk
Enterprise Award: Growing Well, Low Sizergh, Kendal, Cumbria, www.growingwell.co.uk 015395 61777
Butcher Award: SW Doughty, Doddington, Kent www.swdoughty.co.uk 01795 886255.
Daily Telegraph Traditional Business: Nursey of Bungay, Bungay, Suffolk www.nurseysheepskin.co.uk 01986 892 821
Hunter Rural Hero: The Racehorse Sanctuary, Cowfold, West Sussex 01403 865929 - www.racehorsesanctuary.org
Hunter Junior Rural Hero: Tom and Lottie Sweet, Lampeter, Ceredigion.
Lifetime Achievement Award: The Chatsworth Estate, Derbyshire, for sparking the local food movement in the UK. www.chatsworth.org 01246 583392


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