Rural England Stakeholder – Rural Services Network


The Rural Services Network (RSN) represents the interests of rural service providers and their rural communities in England.

The RSN:

• Makes representations on issues affecting rural services
• Promotes active networking between service providers.
• Broadcasts rural best practice
• Promotes debate and interaction between agencies/sectors across many areas of joint interest for example rural crime, rural housing, economic development,  transport, broadband provision and rural health

It runs one of the biggest rural websites in the country and organises the Rural Conference every September. It also operates an annual rural seminar programme.

The Rural Services Network works under a number of separate groupings and subject specific alliances. Each of these groupings works slightly differently. Overall the network comprises around 150 Local Authorities and over 80 non Local Authority service providers in both the public and private sector.

The RSN has a Community Grouping of local Councils, local schools and business organisations in member authorities areas. There are also some 12,000 local organisations attached to the work of the RSN therefore.

Ensuring that the additional cost of provision of many services across the countryside is reflected in funding formulae is an important issue for the Network through its SPARSE Rural arm. We represent that case to government and other policy makers. We also deal with the breadth of other service issues through the Rural Assembly and facilitate the All Party Parliamentary Group on Rural Services involving over 60 Parliamentarians in general and topical rural issues.

The Network is unique in Europe. It fosters constructive debate on all English rural service issues, encouraging best practice and active engagement by all with rural issues.