The next Government will need to deliver a proactive approach to the countryside and recognise the importance of rural-based businesses to the wider economy.
That’s the message from the CLA as it launches a manifesto – Unlock the Countryside’s Potential – in the run-up to next year’s general election.
CLA president Henry Robinson said members owned or managed around half the rural land in England and Wales and ran more than 250 types of business – putting the association in a unique position to advise on how to unlock the social, economic and environmental benefits that rural areas can offer society as a whole.
He said: “We are the only organisation that can help the next government achieve the long-term water, housing, energy and food security issues that will be at the top of every party’s agenda.
“Our manifesto sets out key recommendations that will enable candidates to achieve a better understanding of the countryside and enable those elected to make real change. It is a vision which will help rural areas prosper.”
In its manifesto the association calls on the next government to consider 76 recommendations in the areas of property and ownership, landscape and farming, environment and natural resources, and business and technology.
CLA North regional director Dorothy Fairburn added: “Our manifesto will help candidates ensure the rural north is not disadvantaged by predominantly urban-based legislation.
“Our policies lay out a long-term blueprint to ensure rural areas remain dynamic and thriving places to live, work and visit.”