Organisations that deliver publicly-funded - and voluntary - services in rural areas face a common set of challenges.

Service delivery is more complicated, takes longer and is more resource intensive. Changing demographics, particularly an ageing population, mean above average demand for services.

Government targets and indicators are generic, urban centric and tend to focus activity - and so investment - away from rural areas. In addition, funding settlements take little account of the additional cost of rural delivery.

The government is increasingly engaging with stakeholders at the ‘neighbourhood’ level. Yet all too often, the ‘power’ in partnerships lies with those serving larger, denser populations with higher levels of obvious disadvantage.

All of this means that being involved in rural service delivery is hard work. And in a fast moving political and policy context, this can be difficult and frustrating. But joining the Rural Services Network can make your life easier.

Network members gain access to:

  • National research and lobbying on rural issues
  • Best practice identification and broadcasting
  • A bespoke briefing service with online information and analysis
  • Technical advice and support
  • Performance benchmarking
  • Peer networking and mentoring with like minded colleagues and rural practitioners
  • Full unlimited access to RSN Online

The network has more than 200 members across the complete range of rural services.

Organisations and individuals interested in becoming members should contact David Inman at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.