The 3rd Scottish Rural Parliament was held at Stranraer in south west Scotland on November 14-16. 400 delegates gathered to discuss a wide range of issues, including Brexit and the issues for rural areas, resulting in a Policy Statement to Government
We were delighted to welcome participants from our partner organisations in England, Wales, N. Ireland and Ireland, also a Government representative from Finland. Our UK and Ireland partners developed their working links around the ERP ROAD Project (below).
Maintaining UK Rural Links with Europe
The first gathering of partners in the ‘Maintaining UK Rural Links with Europe’ project, one of the ERP ROAD Projects, took place at the Scottish Rural Parliament on 15th November in Stranraer. Partners considered, along with rural actors and stakeholders, why it’s important to maintain links with Europe, the kind of links we need to maintain and how it can be done. This provided an opportunity to promote the European Rural Parliament and its role in providing a voice for rural communities. ERP Partners in Wales, Northern Ireland, England, Scotland and Ireland will be circulating a survey and holding events in the New Year which will be open to international delegates should they wish to get involved.
Updates will be posted on the ERP website.
The Scottish Rural Parliament takes place every two years and started in 2014. The national high-profile event brings representatives of rural communities from across Scotland together with decision-makers. It is a participative event, and anyone who lives and works in rural Scotland can participate and decide what will be discussed. The event aims to raise the profile of rural needs and strengths, as well as identifying solutions to the challenges our communities face. It represents a genuine opportunity for communities to make real and positive changes where they live. Each rural parliament is attended by representatives from partner organisations across Europe.
There have been 2 Rural Parliaments so far in 2014 and 2016. The next will take place in November 2018. For further information follow the links:
The 2016 Scottish Rural Parliament was held at Brechin in Angus. The event brought together 350 people from across rural Scotland to discuss the issues of greatest important to the rural communities. A Manifesto for Rural Scotland was agreed and decisions take about actions that needed to be taken to ensure our rural communities are empowered, connected and sustainable. This resulted in an Action Plan which determined the work of Scottish Rural Action for the coming 2 years. The themes prioritised by participants were: Lane, Local Democracy and Governance, Business and Broadband and Mobile Connectivity.
For more information please see:
Films of the event including keynote speakers: https://vimeo.com/user34135522
Open Space workshop report (discussions hosted and owned by attendees of the Rural Parliament): B0ok-of-proceedings_final