The Countryside Alliance has compared the rural manifesto commitments of the three main national parties in the tables below. A manifesto is a declaration of public policy and aims for government, usually produced by political parties ahead of elections.

The Countryside Alliance has produced a Rural Charter, and we encourage all supporters to bring this to the attention of their candidates using our lobby platform.


Digital Communications

  • Ensure every home and business has access to highspeed broadband by 2020.
  • Make broadband switching easier and pricing more transparent.
  • Equip people with the digital skills they need.

  • Deliver universal superfast broadband by 2020.
  • Carry out a report on how to deliver ultrafast broadband within the next decade.

  • Ensure every property has superfast broadband by 2022, with a download speed of 30Mbps and an upload speed of 6Mbps.
  • Invest £2 billion to ensure the provision of highspeed broadband in rural areas.
  • Commit to build digital skills.

Food and Farming

  • Commit to grow more, sell more and export more British food.
  • Commit the same cash total for farm support until the end of the parliament.
  • Introduce a new agri-environment system in the following parliament.
  • Pursue free trade with European markets, and secure new trade agreements with other countries.

  • Expand the role of the Groceries Code Adjudicator.
  • Reconfigure funds for farming to support smaller traders, local economies, and sustainable practices.
  • Reinstate the Seasonal Agricultural Workers Scheme.
  • Secure EU market access and ensure Brexit is not used as an excuse to undercut farmers.

  • Increase the powers of the Groceries Code Adjudicator.
  • Refocus farm support towards public benefits.
  • Encourage longer tenancies, share farming and community ownership.
  • Ensure clear country of origin labelling for meat and dairy products.
  • Maintain membership of the Single Market and ensure future trade deals require high safety, environmental and animal welfare standards.

Rural Communities

  • Bring sustainable growth to the rural economy.
  • Protect existing rural Post Offices and extend the availability of business and banking services in local branches.
  • Support small businesses through business rate relief and low taxation.

  • Ensure that the nation’s prosperity is felt beyond our large towns and cities.
  • End the closure of Crown Post Office branches, and set up a Post Bank.
  • Support fairer funding for service provision in rural areas.
  • Introduce ‘rural-proofing’ for all policies and programmes.

  • Set up a £2 billion Rural Services Fund.
  • Review the Business Rates system and consider the implementation of a Land Value Taxation.
  • Prevent Post Office closures.
  • Replace Police and Crime Commissioners with police boards made up of local councillors.

Wildlife and Conservation

  • Grant a free vote, on a government bill in government time, to give parliament the opportunity to decide the future of the Hunting Act.
  • Produce a comprehensive 25 Year Environment Plan.
  • Ensure that public forests and woodland are kept in trust for the nation, and provide stronger protections for our ancient woodland.

  • Maintain the bans on fox hunting, deer hunting and hare coursing.
  • Defend and extend existing environmental protections.
  • Plant a million trees of native species to promote biodiversity and better flood management.

  • Pass five green laws to incorporate existing EU environmental protections.
  • Significantly increase the amount of accessible green space, including completion of the coastal path, and create a new designation of national nature parks.
  • Plant a tree for every UK citizen over the next 10 years, and protect remaining ancient woodlands.

Links to the manifestos for the three main parties, together with other parties with candidates in this election, are available below:

Conservative and Unionist Party

Green Party

Labour Party

Liberal Democrats

Plaid Cymru

Scottish National Party