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MAJOR BOOST TO THE CAMPAIGN FOR A RURAL STRATEGY:
The Independent Food, Farming & Countryside Commission hosted by the RSA in its report launched on Tuesday 16th July ‘Our Future in the Land’ has added its voice to the calls by the RSN and the House of Lords Select Committee for a comprehensive Rural Strategy (more to follow)

Citizens’ Panel encourage a rural community voice

People from rural communities are being encouraged to have their say on the financial and economic issues they face directly to senior policy makers at the Bank of England.

The Bank is running citizens’ panels across the UK which will offer people a chance to have their say on issues such as jobs, pay, housing, access to financial services, and the cost of living.

Although panels are taking place in cities and larger towns, the Bank is keen that the voice of rural communities is also heard. The Bank will cover reasonable travel expenses for those travelling from further afield.

In total, 24 panels will be held each year, two in each of the Bank’s Agency areas which include the English regions and the three devolved nations.

Events are currently scheduled for Scotland, the West Midlands, the East Midlands, Wales and East Anglia, with more to follow.

The Bank’s Chief Economist Andy Haldane said: “Our Citizens’ Panels are a crucial new initiative for the Bank of England, allowing us to listen directly to communities and citizens right across the UK about the economic issues that affect them.

“Hearing first-hand about what matters to people will allow us to make better decisions for the good of everyone in the UK.   

“I’m really looking forward to attending many of these panels to hear about the things that affect people’s lives, from housing and pay to the cost of living and the financial services they use.” 

Applications to join the panel are now open. The Bank hopes to attract a wide range of people from a variety of backgrounds and anyone over the age of 18 is able to apply.

Andrew Hebden, from the Citizens’ Panel project team, said: “We hope that we can attract a wide range of applications to join the panel so that we can hear from as many diverse voices as possible.

“You certainly don’t need to be an expert on the economy to come along – the economy affects us all in different ways and it’s those various perspectives we want to hear.

“It is really important that the rural community has a voice at these events because of the unique financial and economic issues they often face.

“Whilst we are exploring ways of engaging directly with rural communities through other initiatives, these panels are a great opportunity for people to have their say and I’d urge everyone who is interested to take part.”


For details of forthcoming events and details on how to apply, visit www.bankofengland.co.uk/outreach/citizens-panels or call Hope Gray on 07712 324878 to arrange for a printed application form to be sent to you.

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