“Best Rural Social Enterprise…” – Runners-Up!

“Best Rural Social Enterprise…” – Runners-Up!

Rural businesses from across the United Kingdom are celebrating following the Rural Business Awards’ National Final 2019/20. Winners and runners-up were announced for twelve categories, following hundreds of entrants, a competitive shortlist process and a series of regional presentations. The runner-up for the Rural Social Enterprise, Charity or Community Project of the Year Award was Llanwrtyd Wells Community Transport.

The awards aim to recognise and celebrate the successes of businesses operating in the UK’s rural economy, and were held on 27th February 2020 at the exceptional grade II heritage building, The Monastery, Manchester.

“The Rural Business Awards shines a much-deserved spotlight on the innovators, creators and inventors in rural communities across the UK and it’s great to celebrate their successes at this year’s national final,” said Doug Gurr, UK Country Manager, Amazon. “The calibre of businesses entering this year’s awards has been higher than ever. I’d like to congratulate all the winners and nominees and wish them continued success for the future.”

Llanwrtyd Wells Community Transport supports a wide range of people living in the area, from the elderly, to the young, those that suffer with physical or mental disabilities, socially isolated people and everyone in between who needs transport when they have no other means of getting out and about. We offer shopping trips, days out, and group hire, as well as a community car service. Our services are available to both individuals and groups. Last year we completed 24,358 passenger journeys covering 95,365 miles and supported 18 local groups.

We are a small organisation with just 3 full time members of staff, 7 part-time staff and 12 volunteers operating a wide range of services, not just transport. Last year our volunteers gave up nearly 4000 hours to our organisation.

When we saw that more than just a transport service was required in the area, we decided to set up a drop in centre, a community garden, a credit union point, access to work and further education, an offenders’ rehabilitation programme and many more services to help with the sustainability and regeneration of the communities we serve. We are finding these services run alongside our transport services and complement our vision and mission.

Laura Burns, General Manager at Llanwrtyd Wells Community Transport, said: “We are delighted to be the runner-up for the Rural Social Enterprise, Charity or Community Project of the Year Award. As rural services are disappearing, it is social enterprises and charities like Llanwrtyd Wells Community Transport that are stepping into the gap. The Rural Business Awards are a key part of promoting the important work of organisations like ours. This award will mean so much to our local community, especially our wonderful volunteers, without whom what we do wouldn’t be possible, and we can’t wait to celebrate with them.”

The winner of the award was The Pheasant at Neenton – a community owned pub.

Founded by rural-based businesswomen, Jemma Clifford and Anna Price, the Rural Business Awards are backed by Amazon and judged by an independent panel, drawn from the rural business sector, rural public sector agencies, and rural charitable organisations.

Anna Price, who co-founded the RBAs, alongside Jemma Clifford, said: “The 2019/20 Rural Business Awards has been our best year yet, and our work to promote the rural sector would not be possible without the support of Amazon and our other sponsors. The calibre of entries this year was exceptional, so we’d like to wish hearty congratulations to all our winners and runners-up. We’re inspired by all of our national finalists, but the judges were particularly impressed by Llanwrtyd Wells Community Transport, and we can’t wait to see what they do next.”

Award ceremony

To learn about the Rural Business Awards visit www.ruralbusinessawards.co.uk

David Harrison
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