'Shock' predicted for South West rural economy from changes to farming payment scheme

New research published today identifies £883 million is predicted to be lost from the rural economy up to 2027 across Cornwall, the Isles of Scilly, Devon, Dorset and Somerset.

Farmers and other land managers are coming to terms with the move away from Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) support, but the transition is proving difficult, and the replacement Sustainable Farming Initiative...

Expansion of mobile boost programme

A scheme to improve mobile phone coverage in rural parts of Devon and Somerset is being expanded.

Connecting Devon and Somerset (CDS) has announced that its Mobile Boost Programme, which aims to upgrade indoor 4G coverage in “not-spot” areas, now includes a greater choice of equipment.

The initiative, which is being funded through the Heart of the South West Local Enterprise...

Rural health and construction ‘micro’ businesses can help shape business support

Devon’s smallest health and social care, and construction businesses are invited to take part in a research trial that will ensure that they can access improved support in the future. ‘Micro businesses’ are sole traders and businesses with fewer than 10 employees, and they make up more than 90 per cent of Devon’s rural economy. So far more than 450 ‘micros’ have signed up to the Engaging...

Coast and Country: Have your say about life in South Devon

Rural and coastal communities, such as towns and villages across South Devon, face a number of unique problems that are often misunderstood by the politicians in London who set national policy. The results of recent local elections demonstrated that the deep divisions highlighted by the European referendum continue to exist, with clear voting differences and political deadlock between urban...

Coast and Country: Have your say

Rural and coastal communities face a number of unique problems that are often misunderstood by the politicians in London who set national policy. ‘Coast and Country: Have your Say’ is a free public meeting, giving you an opportunity to share your concerns about the challenges of living in rural and coastal South West Devon and beyond. Following your participation in themed discussions, our expert panel will hear and respond to the issues you raise. The panel includes politicians and researchers who are experienced in marine, coastal and rural policy.

The outcomes of the meeting...

Celebrate and support Devon’s Village Halls

Regional charity Devon Communities Together is encouraging communities across Devon to celebrate and support their local community buildings during Village Halls Week (22-25 January 2018).

Run by the voice for England’s rural community councils, ACRE (Action with Communities in Rural England), Village Halls Week is designed to shine a spotlight on the network of over 10,000 community...

New project focuses on dementia in farming and rural communities

Dementia is a growing health problem, with an anticipated increase in the number of cases of 156 per cent between now and 2051, according to statistics from the Alzheimer’s Society.

This equates to two million people, and the burden will fall on rural areas where there are significantly higher proportions of elderly people.

The burden will impact farming businesses, communities...

Rise in rural jobs predicted over next decade

Productivity could grow faster in the countryside than urban areas over the next decade, with a rise in rural jobs, thanks to a high-tech boost from speedier broadband and better transport links, a new analysis has shown.

Increased connectivity, spread of innovation, growth in knowledge-based industries and changes in working patterns are expected to help rural areas catch up with...

Devon welcomes assisted areas announcement

Devon County Council has warmly welcomed the Government announcement that the second stage of the 2014-2020 Assisted Areas Map Consultation has been launched.

The consultation will establish the areas of the UK where regional aid and enhanced levels of Government assistance will be available to support disadvantaged economies and the businesses within these.

The County Council...

Devon residents saving thousands on their heating oil

Members of a scheme to tackle rising energy prices have saved a staggering £23,000 off the cost of their domestic heating oil, this year.

Devon County Council says it’s a great example of communities working together to get a better deal on their heating bills.

The Devon Oil Collective works on the principle of buying heating oil in bulk through consolidating its members’...