C2C forum no2 jeremy leggett final

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  • 1. West Sussex Rural Partnership The rural economy of the C2C area 19 March 2012Slide no. 2
  • 2. Presenters q Jeremy Leggett – CEO AirS q Roger Paterson – Chair of the Rural Partnership 19 March 2012Slide no. 3
  • 3. Scope of C2C’s rural area 19 March 2012Slide no. 4
  • 4. Opportunities and threats q Opportunities  South Downs National Park – duty to promote social and economic development (11% of rural West Sussex pop.)  Thriving small rural towns with strong community partnerships  Highly entrepreneurial land based sector on the Chichester plain  Rapid job creation within home-based and micro-business sector q Threats  “No change” lobby amongst those living in rural areas but personally disconnected from the local economy  Limited broadband access  Demographic change 19 March 2012Slide no. 5
  • 5. The Rural Partnership q Pre-dates the Gatwick Diamond and Coastal Partnerships q Encompasses social, economic and environmental interests q Leadership and secretariat provided by the charity Action in rural Sussex with financial support from WSCC and DEFRA q Has acted as a broad ‘stakeholder’ group for a number of initiatives to promote rural access to services and to tackle rural disadvantage q Has ‘spun off’:  ERDP Leader Local Action Groups  Rural Skills and Enterprise Group q Currently reviewing structure and raising level of ‘decision maker’ engagement 19 March 2012Slide no. 6
  • 6. Growing the rural economy (1) q Jobs and the knowledge economy are growing in rural West Sussex (2003-8)  Although the no.of jobs in the rural wards increased by nearly 11% or 6,500….  ….the no.of jobs in urban areas declined by a 6,500 or 2.4% of urban jobs.  Knowledge economy jobs grew in the rural wards by 20%, or 3,300 jobs. q Manufacturing is the biggest rural sector in terms of jobs - 12.5% 19 March 2012Slide no. 7
  • 7. Growing the rural economy (2) q Land based employment is the second smallest sector  This sector represents just 1.2 % of businesses in the rural area.  However, there are signs of growth in new areas such as viticulture. q Large numbers of fast growing rural home based businesses  Based on 2008 GEM research (30k base):  56% of all UK businesses home based  61% of start ups home based  54% of entrepreneurs plan home base  3 times more HBB in rural areas (CRC!) 19 March 2012Slide no. 8
  • 8. Broadband q Market failure  Poor rural broadband access is a case of fundamental market failure – regulation and intervention must be triggered in relation to the urban market offer ie capacity and price q Intervention and regulation  A strategic framework to make use of all private and public assets to reach 90% of rural people needs to be put in place; administrative and commercially restrictive obstacles must be cleared out of the way. q The community role  We can help communities to reach the last 10%, but only if there is a coherent financial and technical framework within which their contribution makes sense and can be sustained. q Demand stimulation / registration  Made more difficult by current very poor service 19 March 2012Slide no. 9
  • 9. Key messages q Remove the barriers and small business will grow by itself q Young people are the future but access to skills training is poor q Cost of housing is out of step with incomes in the rural economy q Ditch the myths about the rural economy and build on success 19 March 2012Slide no. 10