The Countryside Alliance attended a meeting with Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Rt Hon Liz Truss MP, on Wednesday 15 May to call for greater rural investment in the upcoming Spending Review.
Head of Policy, Sarah Lee, and Chief Executive, Tim Bonner, joined other rural organisations for a meeting in the Treasury to discuss what can be done to support rural communities. The meeting forms part of an ongoing consultation on the next Spending Review, which will outline government spending over the next four years.
The Chief Secretary was particularly keen to hear ideas on what could be done to boost economic growth and improve infrastructure, such as transport links and digital connectivity.
Ahead of the Spending Review, a coalition of rural organisations, led by Phillip Dunne MP, submitted a detailed plan on future funding for the countryside. The Countryside Alliance stressed that digital connectivity, affordable housing, and business taxation, should be prioritised as part of plans for government spending.
The Countryside Alliance welcomed the Chief Secretary’s engagement with rural organisations and her commitment to consider the countryside in the Spending Review to ensure government spending benefits all regions and nations of the country.
Sarah Lee commented: “Decisions made as part of the Spending Review will be vital to rural communities across the country. The Government has a clear choice; it can watch the gap grow ever wider between rural and urban economies, or it can choose to invest and help unlock the potential of the countryside to contribute to the economic life of the country. We will continue to make the case for greater rural investment at every opportunity.”