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Rural livelihoods

We want a thriving countryside…

…where rural communities have local jobs, services, shops, pubs and homes. We campaign for a living and working countryside with communities that are sustainable and more self-sufficient.

We try to bring this about by

  • the work we do on planning applications
  • our responses to national, regional and local consultations
  • supporting initiatives which help the local economy


Farming is crucial in shaping and maintaining the landscapes we love but we are concerned about the impact of social and economic pressures on upland farming in the South Pennines and the Peak District, where 12% of the working population is employed in farming.

What we do

  • Lobby locally, regionally and nationally to support policies that will properly reward good farming practices
  • Work to protect the best and most versatile agricultural land from development and promote its use for agriculture, including energy crops
  • Support community agricultural schemes such as allotments and other projects that involve people in food production
  • Try to limit too many equestrian facilities in areas where they don’t fit the character of the local landscape and where they will lead to other developments, such as floodlighting or new roads
  • Support hill farming where it’s the best opportunity to protect local landscapes and wildlife
  • Support direct and local sales of locally produced food, including farm shops
  • Give evidence in support of upland farming to ensure the environmental work farmers do is rewarded
  • Support planning applications that will help secure the financial viability of environmentally sustainable farms

Food miles

We encourage the strengthening of local food supply chains and local marketing schemes such as the Environmental Quality Mark which promote local products produced to high environmental standards.

Read more

For more details, have a look at our Food and farming policy.