This award aims to celebrate any Professional Services business that has established a position in a rural locale or that serves a rural client group. These businesses will have embraced the challenges of operating within a rural marketplace, demonstrated by the development of a clear business strategy, which addresses the unique challenges of working with individuals and companies operating rural and land based businesses. The businesses will show a strong ethical approach and involvement and understanding of the businesses who they serve. The winning business will demonstrate:
• How and why the business better serves rural clients than urban or city based businesses and how the approach differs.
• Excellent customer care – going the extra mile.
• An understanding of the challenges of living, working or running a business in the rural marketplace.
• An understanding of the rural marketplace and how to address the communication challenges of keeping in touch with grass roots.
• What makes the business different and why clients choose their businesses services over those of competitors.
Best Rural Social Enterprise, Charity or Community Project
The Sustainability and Environmental Impact Award
Best Rural Professional Services Business Winners
The Great Out-tours
The Great Out-tours enrich and empower primary age children and people with special needs, learning disabilities, dementia and mental health conditions, to see, interpret and understand the beauty, features and importance of our countryside. This is achieved through a dual targeting ‘Four Seasons Activity Programme’ syllabus, purveyed via a face-to-face service and an online activity programme. These programmes are structured educational digests of practical activities, sharing a unique gift – the power to appreciate the natural world by sight, sound, scent & touch. The Great Out-tours help people apply this knowledge to their own lives increasing the quality of and appreciation for life.
Jane Craigie Marketing
Jane Craigie Marketing are a small, knowledgeable rural and agrifood marketing agency with a kind, fun and ‘do different’ approach to marketing communications and events. The Aberdeenshire based business believe strongly in community power – they employ local people and give back to support rural and journalistic causes. From experiencing the client side, they know what a good agency relationship looks like and they build relationships for the long term with high profile clients including BASF and The Oxford Farming Conference. Jane Craigie Marketing’s disruptive approach ensures their marketing stands out and brings success.
Best Rural Professional Services Business Finalists
Isle of Wight
Based in Wootton on the beautiful Isle of Wight, Brightbulb Design is a multi-award winning creative lab for brands, specialising in design and digital. They partner with both global brands and emerging businesses, adding just the right ingredients through their creative chemistry to achieve success. With the brightest creatives in design and full on doctors of digital expertise at their fingertips, Brightbulb Design have a varied skillset across graphic and web design, app development, video and animation and everything in between.
Duncan & Toplis
Chartered accountants and business advisers Duncan & Toplis were established in 1925 and have 11 offices across rural areas of Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire and Lincolnshire. The company ranks among the 30 largest accountancy practices in the UK, and is committed to delivering high levels of client service, supporting communities and being the place where talented people belong. With a history deep set in agriculture, Duncan & Toplis offers a range of services including accountancy, audit, tax and payroll as well as HR, IT support, corporate finance and legal services.
Fortem People Limited
Fortem People are a boutique recruitment agency based in a converted barn on a farm in the middle of the Yorkshire Dales National Park. They provide tailored temporary and permanent recruitment solutions to companies throughout Yorkshire, delivering a successful and valued service to both clients and applicants. As well as recruitment, Fortem People also offer HR, Training & Consultancy services. Fortem People do things a little bit differently – from walk and talk meetings in the Yorkshire Dales, to networking sessions called ‘From the City to the Farm’. They also have a mascot Sunny the Strawberry who pops up all over the place!
Sawpod Ltd are an independent forestry and arboriculture training company located in rural Hampshire. Business owners, Tony and Di, facilitate training in all the practical aspects of the industry and are passionate about providing the best teaching and support to enable all students to achieve success. They are proud that many local companies regularly return for refresher training including the Kew Gardens Arboriculture Team. Sawpod Ltd are also accredited trainers for the MOD for Service Leavers and design and produce several products to make work life in the tree easier which are sold to customers worldwide.