Lancashire Rural Delivery Pathfinder

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					   Lancashire Rural Delivery Pathfinder

         Facilitating Rural Enterprise

                          Report Completed by John Welbank MRICS
                         Program Manager Lancashire Rural Futures
                           Email :
                                                            Rob Hindle MRICS
                                                               Rural Innovation
                                                                November 2006

Paper presented at the 5th Rural Entrepreneurship Conference, Riseholme Campus, University of Lincoln
Contribution of Rural Entrepreneurship to Policy and their impact on rural

Abstract: Lancashire Rural Futures1

Lancashire was chosen to lead on Defra’s Rural Delivery Pathfinder for the North
West. The managing Task Group determined that the initiative should contribute
towards the over-arching sub-regional vision of ‘working towards a dynamic rural
economy for Lancashire which is financially, socially and environmentally

The Pathfinder identified Facilitating Enterprise as a key thematic area with the
objective of achieving a better understanding of how public (sector / funded)
intervention can contribute to delivering the productivity element of Defra’s PSA4
target, influence and deliver against regional and sub-regional economic strategies.

The following activity has been undertaken:

   Researching key blockages and constraints to rural enterprise and productivity
   Detailed analysis of the economic functionality of rural towns
   A full study of the economic performance (including consultation and engagement
    with business owners) of one of the main market towns / (in a lagging rural area)
    in order to identify:
        o Role and functionality
        o Performance
        o Constraints to economic growth
        o Key assets for economic growth
        o Optimum public policy and service delivery implementation

This has led to a common understanding of the profile, performance and issues
affecting enterprise in rural Lancashire. The work has subsequently been
successfully used to inform and influence policy (at regional and sub-regional level)
and service delivery (the activities of Lancashire Rural Futures) viz:

       Preparation of evidence based representations into the Enquiry in Public for
        the Regional Spatial Strategy
       Development of the Lancashire Economic Strategy and Lancashire Rural
       Input into the development of the Ribble Valley Local Development
       Representations to the regional rural governance tier
       Direct reporting to DEFRA via the Rural Delivery Pathfinder programme

This influence on policy will lead to increased focus and impact on rural
entrepreneurship in the medium term. In the short term it has been used to change
delivery structures and methods. Each of the blockages highlighted by consultation
and research has been addressed. Recommendations have also been made for
further changes within delivery structures and the overarching policy framework. The
work has directly influenced:

       Development of the regional and sub-regional implementation plan for the
        Rural Development Plan for England 2007 – 2013
       Target and priority setting for the Lancashire Local Area Agreement Economy
        & Enterprise block

 LRF is the leading public sector provider of facilitation and business support to rural
      Targeting and priority setting for the delivery of SO1 (Broadening the
       Economic Base) of the Lancashire Rural Recovery Action Plan
      Targeting and priority setting for the delivery of rural business support and
       enterprise facilitation

The Pathfinder process has required many of the old assumptions as to what
constitutes rural development to be rejected. It has become clear that to secure
productivity from rural enterprise a fundamental shift in support, funding and planning
towards growth sectors is required.

Our paper will map out this process, demonstrating the continuum from engagement
with rural entrepreneurs, research and analysis, conclusions and recommendations,
influencing and informing, to implementation and impact.

John Welbank Lancashire Rural Futures
Rob Hindle Rural Innovation
                         ENTERPRISE THEMATIC REPORT

1.       Introduction to Pathfinder

Pathfinder was announced by Rural Affairs Minister, Alun Michael in October, 2004
and is one of eight across England designed to demonstrate the potential of local
authorities to lead on local delivery of Government Rural Policy

Lancashire was chosen to lead the Rural Delivery ‘Pathfinder’ project for the North
West. The Lancashire Task Group defined the over arching objective of the
Lancashire Pathfinder as:-
'Working towards a dynamic rural economy for Lancashire which is financially,
socially and environmentally sustainable'.

Lancashire has a complex urban/rural mix – cities and conurbations merge the
boundaries of urban and rural economies and communities. Lancashire’s rural
pathfinder has developed regeneration solutions, which reflect the character of the
county and local agenda. This has been achieved by:

        pulling together rural and urban development professionals, politicians and
        shaping future decision-making and public service delivery
        demonstrating the competitive advantage that rural Lancashire offers to the
         county and the region

Lancashire’s rural pathfinder Themes include:

        Housing stock
        Facilitating enterprise
        Market Town function
        Rural proofing and access to services
        Transport provision
        Environmental value

2.       Facilitating Rural Enterprise

Objective : Find a better understanding of how public intervention to support
economic activity across rural Lancashire can contribute to delivering Defra’s
PSA target 4 and regional and sub-regional economic strategies
Priority Outcomes
i)       A detailed evidence base on the economic functionality and connectivity of
Lancashire Market Towns and their rural hinterland
ii)      A detailed understanding of the factors (barriers / constraints) affecting GVA,
and the value of public sector investment
iii)     A detailed understanding of what constitutes a sustainable community
iv)      Based on results provide innovative solutions to overcome barriers to
enterprise development in rural areas.
3. Evidence base for Economic Functionality

Research : The evidence base was a combination of previously published
sources and additional surveys and data collation.

2005 : Stakeholder Surveys – A series of stakeholder surveys and meetings
targeting both public sector agencies and private sector rural businesses. The
aim was to highlight the key blockages to enterprise development through
anecdotal evidence.
2006 : Targeted research commenced within the Ribble Valley. The aim was to
discover how best public sector intervention could be used to overcome the
functional and policy barriers to rural enterprise development.
Research process :
 – Establish local Enterprise Group including Business Support Services, Ribble
Valley DC, LSP representation, Market Towns Group to steer research project.
- Commission detailed research analysis of Economic functionality. Including
    key sectoral surveys and travel to work movement.
- Undertake detailed business survey.
-    Undertake detailed Community Planning exercise for Dunsop Bridge
enterprise development as part of Master Planning Research.

Results : Many of the findings were already known however the data analysis has
provided a solid evidence base on which to shape recommendations. A number
of these issues are highlighted below.

What is the real rural economy ? : The traditional view of the rural economy has
been dominated by agriculture and tourism. The reality is that both these sectors
have minimal impact on rural Lancashire’s productivity. As an example
agriculture contributes only 0.07% towards Lancashire’s GVA. In employment
terms agriculture and forestry combined provide less than 3% of the employment
allocation. Despite this national, regional and sub-regional policy has been based
around support to these sectors. In reality rural Lancashire’s sectoral activity
mirrors urban sectoral activity.

Fig.1. % Allocation of Employment in Lancashire



       Urban     15

       Valley    10



                         try      ies      ring ru ction       e ta il
                                                                            ur an Co mm
                                                                                         s        n cia
                                                                                                              s          dm         ia l
                   or es g, Utilit u fac tu                &R                               Fina nd Bus            lic A         Soc
              &F                                 st
                                             Co n olesa le             e sta       &                          Pub             h&
           Ag        a rry
                           in    Man                            l & R nsp ort                   te a                 nH
                , Qu                             Wh       Ho te        Tra                 Es ta                atio
            ing                                                                      Re a

   Lancashire as a whole has an estimated GVA per head index of 83 against
   the national average of 100. The principle reason for underperformance is an
   over reliance on low growth manufacturing. This position is exacerbated by
     the low incidence of high growth sectors such as ICT, financial services and
     This imbalance is evident for both urban and rural Lancashire. This is
     reflected in data associated with business sites. 26.6% of Lancashire sites
     are associated with primary industries compared to the regional average of
     21.9%. In contrast high growth sectors account for only 11.7% of stock
     compared to the regional average of 21.5%. This imbalance in workspace
     provision was highlighted in NWDA’s rural workspace audit undertaken in
      Over 40% of Lancashire’s business stock is based in rural wards. Compared
     to Lancashire’s population distribution this is high suggesting a predominance
     of small owner managed businesses. This may also suggest rural areas have
     higher levels of entrepreneurial activity.

     In addition to the detailed sectoral analysis the enterprise research looked at
     Lancashire’s rural residents and their occupational types. This research was
     further expanded to provide an insight into commuter activity within rural
     areas. The research was based around 14 key service centres.
     Unsurprisingly what was found was that high paying growth sector employees
     lived in rural Lancashire. This is reflected within DEFRA’s index of
     deprivation. As part of this calculation earnings based on residence are
     included. From a policy intervention position when data is provided for
     earnings based on workplace rather than residence the situation is very
     different. This subtlety is presently not reflected within DEFRA’s targeting.

The issue of movement patterns will be crucial to an understanding of real
economic functionality as it is clear from present targeting that data is slued by
place of residence rather than by place of employment. Taking Garstang as an

Fig.2. Travel to work inflow to Garstang – 899 movements
Fig.3. Travel to work outflow from Garstang – 1544 movements

This simple inflow and outflow of people is not unusual in a highly urbanised county
such as Lancashire’s. The importance is however based around the employment
types that characterise these movements.

Fig. 4. Garstang – Net ‘Value’ Exchange In / Out

                               io r     nal     al ri al  ade     i ce tomer pla nt nta ry
                          S en s si o s si on reta d Tr Serv           s    s       e
                     ers & Profe Profe & Sec Sk il le rs onal s & Cu Proc es El em
                 na g             a te trati ve        Pe    al e
               Ma             oc i                         S
                          As s dm ini s
It is clear that the high value jobs leave and the low value come in. This exchange
balance was reflected across all of the Key Service Centres analysed. If similar data
were to be available in the rural hinterland it would be anticipated that the imbalance
would be even more extreme
Some of the questions the data raises are detailed below :-

   -   Based on rural resident’s employment type we can assume that the target
       high growth employees live in rural Lancashire. The issue is how can we
       encourage them to locate their employment to rural areas as well ?

   -   If we are to create truly sustainable communities this must involve economic
       activity. How can a community be sustainable when a large proportion of its
       workforce works elsewhere? As part of the sustainability test simple traffic
       movements must also be a factor. Taking the example of Clitheroe 3200
       workers drive into Clitheroe everyday while 2900 drive out. Through
       intervention is it possible to at least partially mitigate the unsustainable nature
       of travel to work movements in rural areas?

In addition to the data analysis a business survey was also undertaken to establish
what both attracted and detracted from enterprise development in rural Lancashire.
The principle findings ranked in order are listed below.

“What are the benefits to locating in the rural Lancashire?”
Attractive Surroundings                              -       98%
Limited Congestion                             -     88%
Proximity to major conurbations                      -       87%
Committed Staff                                      -       86%

“What are the constraints to Business Development?”
Cost of Housing                                  -            80%
Planning                                   -     75%
Cost of premises                           -     71%
Parking and Transport                            -            67%
Suitable Staff                             -     58%

From an enterprise development perspective the most striking results are that the
strongest positive and strongest negative responce are not based on economic
factors. The strongest positive is the surrounding environment and the strongest
negative is based on residential house prices. This highlights the linkages that need
to be made when dealing with policy decisions in rural areas. Business decisions are
not simply based on economic factors. Lifestyle, residential requirements even local
schools play a factor in the decision making process of entrepreneurs. If the aim is to
encourage new high growth business to rural areas the policy decisions need to
encompass not only economic support but also the cross cutting themes for a
sustainable community i.e. housing, access to services and the environment.

* For the full Enterprise Research Report see
4.          Key Blockages

Based on both the data analysis and survey the Enterprise Group produced the
following list of key blockages to enterprise development. Other issues have been
analysed but those below were the principle focus of activity.

     a) Low level of High Growth Companies
     - Lack of appropriate workspace
     - Poor Business Perception of Key service centres
     - Broadband disadvantage in more remote rural areas
     b) Perceived and actual Development Control Restrictions.
     -  Highways resistance to traffic generation in rural areas.
     - Restricted ability to expand business premises as business grows.
     - Time cost and uncertainty of development control process
     c) Cost of land/Buildings
     - Low supply of workspace within Key Service Centres.
      - Speculative residential values restricting workspace conversion.
      - Cost of residential property as a barrier to inward migration

     5. Testing Pathfinder Against Policy :

     The key blockages highlighted by the research can not be viewed in isolation. In
     order to both influence policy and create change the blockages need to be
     viewed against the existing policy position. For enterprise development there
     exists three policy drivers:-

     i)       Regional Economic Strategy (RES)
     ii)      Regional Spatial Strategy (RSS) - DRAFT
     iii)     Co-ordinated Actions for Rural Lancashire (CARL)

     During the lifetime of the Lancashire Pathfinder the group has been highly
     effective in using Pathfinder to influence all these policy documents.

     For each of the key blockages the tables below highlight the support each policy
     document provides.
Table i.       Lack of appropriate      Poor Business              Broadband
Low level of   workspace for high       Perception of Key          disadvantage in
High Growth    growth sectors           service centres            more remote rural
Companies                                                          areas

Regional       Action 8 Target          Action 4 Review            Action 22
Economic       priority sectors :       business support           Continue to grow
Strategy       -Biomedical              needs including the        and develop ICT
               -Advanced                rural economy.             infrastructure
               Engineering              Action 51 Diversify the    especially in rural
               -Food & Drink            economic base and          areas.
               -Digital and Creative    support sectors with       Action 21
               -Business and            growth potential in the    Encourage home
               Professional             rural economy.             and mobile
               Action 82 Develop a                                 working
               portfolio of sub-        Little direct support to
               regional employment      entrepreneurial
               sites.                   development and
               Action 83 Invest in      more general
               high quality business    enterprise
               accommodation.           development in Key
                                        Service Centres
Regional       Policy W3 Supply of      Policy RDF3 Rural          No comment
Spatial        Sub-regional and         Areas – Development
Strategy       Local employment         in rural areas should
               land highlighting        be concentrated in Key
               need for                 service Centres.
               -appropriate balance
               of B1/B2/B3
Co-ordinated   7.8 Productivity         7.8 Productivity           No comment
Actions        - Sectoral focusing as   - Apply spatial
For Rural      per the RES              targeting to Key
Lancashire     - Improve                service Centres
               performance of           - Apply spatial
               lagging areas through    targeting based on the
               infrastructure           employment
               development              characteristics of local
Table ii.          Highways resistance to         Restricted ability   Time cost and
Perceived and      traffic generation in rural    to expand            uncertainty of
actual             areas                          business             development
Development                                       premises as          control process
Control                                           business grows

Regional           Action 7 Highlight the         Action 88            Action 4
Economic           impact of Central and          Secure a positive    Review
Strategy           Local authority regulation     physical planning    business
                   on growth                      framework which      support needs
                   Action 51 Diversify the        supports             including the
                   economic base and              economic growth      rural economy.
                   support sectors with
                   growth potential in rural
Regional Spatial   Negative Comment               Policy W3            No Comment
Strategy           Policy TR2 In rural areas      Supply of sub-
                   plans and strategies for       regional and
                   managing traffic should        local employment
                   focus on protecting the        land.
                   environment and                -At least 30% of
                   maintaining the tranquillity   sites are
                   of the countryside. No         available so that
                   comment on the needs of        new and existing
                   the rural economy- further     businesses have
                   lobbying underway.             the ability to
Co-ordinated       No comment                     No comment           No Comment
For Rural
Table iii. Cost    Low supply of         Speculative             Cost of residential
of                 workspace within      residential values      property as a barrier
Land/Buildings     Key Service           restricting             to inward migration
                   Centres               workspace
Regional           Action 82 Develop     Action 6 Address        Action 84 Develop
Economic           a portfolio of sub-   key business            new uses for brown
Strategy           regional              finance gaps.           field sites including
                   employment sites.                             housing.
                   Action 83 Invest in
                   high quality
Regional Spatial   Policy RDF3 Rural     Lack of supply of    Policy RDF3 Rural
Strategy           Areas –               suitable             Areas –
                   Development in        development sites    Development should
                   rural areas should    has been created     concentrate on Key
                   be concentrated in    through housing      service Centres and
                   Key service           price inflation.     should meet the
                   Centres.              These issues are     needs of local
                                         addressed in „Cost   communities
                                         of residential       including housing
                                         property as a barrierPolicy L2 –
                                         to inward migration‟ Understanding
                                                              housing Markets
                                                              -Influence on house
                                                              supply across all
                                                              types ,sizes, tenures
                                                              and values
                                                              - Overcome
                                                              increasing issues of
                                                              Policy CNL4 –
                                                              Spatial Policy for
                                                              North Lancashire.
                                                              -Ensure a sufficient
                                                              supply of affordable
                                                              housing within rural
Co-ordinated       7.8 Productivity      Target Outcome –     Target Outcome –
Actions            - Apply spatial       Affordable Rural     Affordable Rural
For Rural          targeting to Key      Housing. Integrated Housing. Achieving
Lancashire         service Centres       planning,            a better
                   - Apply spatial       service provision    balance between
                   targeting based on    and                  the
                   the employment        economic             supply & demand
                   characteristics of    development          for
                   local residents       systems that clearly affordable rural
                                         informs the delivery housing
                                         of                   to ensure that
                                         affordable rural     people
                                         housing              have the opportunity
                                         solutions to support and choice of a
                                         sustainable          decent home and
                                         communities          place to live.
                                           and a vibrant local
   The analysis of Key Blockages against the principle policy drivers shows clearly
   that both existing and future policy decisions are generally supportive of
   Lancashire’s drive towards more sustainable economic activity. There are still
   specific issues such as highways where further lobbying is required. The question
   that arises from this analysis is why do businesses still find development in rural
   areas difficult? The conclusion from the Pathfinder research suggests that
   although policy is supportive there are still significant blockages at the point of

   6. Rural Enterprise Support

   Within Pathfinder rural enterprise support has been investigated as a specific
   theme. In a rural context the main thrust of this research has centred on the need
   for rural delivery to move away from programs and towards mainstreaming of
   delivery. For enterprise development there are three principle areas of public
   sector intervention.

   a.      Business Support – Provided through Business Link however mainstream
           support often fails to meet the distinct requirements of rural businesses.
   b.      Capital/Revenue Funding – Historically delivered through a wide variety of
           bodies as separate programs. For rural areas this has focussed on
           farming, farm diversification and tourism.
   c.      Training – Rural specific training has been historically provided to the
           agricultural and tourism sectors through programs.

This report focuses on rural Lancashire as its study. In order to establish the changes
needed in public sector intervention the Lancashire context requires further
explanation. Over the past seven years Lancashire has rapidly developed its rural
offer beyond the basic mainstream provision. This has been an evolving process that
has matched the funding and policy backdrop. Pathfinder will provide another step
Based on the principle forms of public sector intervention highlighted above
Lancashire has added to the existing mainstream provision through additional
programs. These have been coordinated through a county structure known as
Lancashire Economic Partnership (LEP). Within LEP lies a rural board which is
supported by a technical officer group and wider rural forum. This structure provides
the lead for intervention by setting policy, providing governance, drawing down
funding and commissioning programs. This is undertaken alongside mainstream
provision. Areas of intervention are broad and include food promotion, community
development packages and direct grant aid to businesses. The single largest
intervention is facilitated business support through Lancashire Rural Futures.

Lancashire Case Study : Lancashire Rural Futures (LRF)
LRF began in 1998 under its original title of the Bowland Initiative. The principle
reason for intervention at the time was the crisis within the agricultural sector.
Through a partnership approach the Initiative brought together the lead delivery
organisations within the county and created a structure that allowed for intensive
business and environmental facilitation alongside mainstream provision. As an
example Business Link provided the employment function, the County Council
provided the accountable body function. The delivery team also included embedded
staff from other organisation including DEFRA and RSPB. As demand increased for
the service the partnership expanded the program to the whole of the county. What
was also clear was that many of the reasons for poor enterprise development in the
landbased sector were mirrored in other sectors. For this reason LRF’s remit
expanded to include all rural businesses.
The facilitation team is split between business and environmental advisors. They
provide intensive support through project development. This may include market
testing, planning negotiation, supply chain linkages, business planning and if
appropriate sourcing of external funding to support business development. Funding
support will include agri-environmental support to the landbased sector as this is
regarded as business support.
LRF is seen as an exemplar service in the context of rural business support however
no delivery mechanism can remain static. Based on the changing policy and funding
situation LRF itself is undergoing review and this will include an analysis of targeting
against Pathfinder (Mid term evaluation of LRF can be accessed from Lancashire
County Council’s Pathfinder Web site : Enterprise Thematic Group).

7.     Prioritisation for Policy Intervention

Through the Pathfinder process the significance of different rural sectors to deliver
Pathfinder objectives have been tested against the need for intervention. In simplistic
terms sectors can be broken into those of ‘need’ and those of ‘opportunity’. The
question from a funding position is where to place the public intervention on this
scale. An example is provided below.

Fig.5. Where ?

               Where to Intervene?

     NEED                                    OPPORTUNITY

     Upland                                  Knowledge based
     Farming                                 economy


Based on the Pathfinder recommendations a clear focus would be required for both
of these sectors but for very different reasons. The Knowledge Economy meets
Pathfinder’s key objective of encouraging high growth business. For this reason a
funding requirement may be required to overcome blockages in achieving this
objective. For upland farming the case is less clear. From the research undertaken it
can be seen that one of the principle reasons for growth businesses to locate to rural
Lancashire is based on the environment, principally the landscape. Pathfinder also
has an overall objective to maintain sustainable communities. The upland farming
community is a distinct community that would not be sustainable without public sector
intervention through some means of business support. As a policy decision
Lancashire will provide upland farming with enterprise support but this will be
primarily through environmental funding not enterprise support.
These funding decisions then need to be translated into future funding options. In the
case of both these examples a simplified funding schematic is provided below.
Fig.6. Lancashire’s Prioritisation for Intervention

          Lancashire’s Rural Priorities

     NEED                                          OPPORTUNITY

     Environment                              Knowledge Economy

         AXIS         RDPE
                                                  Rural Renaissace II
          II          AXIS I        RDPE
                                   AXIS III

Public sector intervention in rural enterprise development consistently fails to
mainstream delivery. The reality for the foreseeable future will continue to be a
process of selective targeting of programs and program bending to fit with
Lancashire’s requirements.
8.     Pathfinder Implementation

Lancashire’s Enterprise Group has now entered the implementation phase. The
recommendations from Pathfinder have already been used to influence many of the
key policy documents as highlighted previously. The recommendations have also
been used to change delivery structures and methods. Where the reason for the
blockage lies outside the influence of the Pathfinder group recommendations to
external bodies will continue to be made. The table below highlights where ‘Delivered
Actions’ have already taken place, where ‘Future Action’ is to be targeted and where
’Recommendations for Action’ will be made.

Table iv.             Lack of appropriate       Poor Business     Broadband
Low level of High     workspace for high        Perception of     disadvantage in
Growth                growth sectors            Key service       more remote rural
Companies                                       centres           areas

Delivered Actions     - Target Lancashire       - Disseminate     - Encourage more
                      Rural Futures (LRF -      Pathfinder data   active involvement
                      rural business            to Market town    of Digital
                      facilitation              partnerships      Development
                      service)support at the    - Instigate       Agency in isolated
                      creation of workspace     workspace         rural areas
                      designed for RES          audits within
                      target sectors            Key Service
                      - Focus Rural             Centres
                      Development Grant
                      Fund at high growth
                      workspace projects.
                       - Develop innovative
                      workspace solutions
                      such as Live/Work
                      targeting growth sector
                      jobs eg Brockhall
                      Village, Halton Mill
Future Actions         - Develop new gap        - Build Key
                      funding options to        Service Centre
                      encourage workspace       enterprise
                      development               promotion into
                                                the LSP
Recommendations        - Target Rural                             - Encourage
for Action            Renaissance II at                           continued
                      growth sector                               investment in
                      enterprise within rural                     isolated rural
                      areas.                                      exchanges to
                                                                  increase both
                                                                  range and
Table v. Perceived   Highways             Restricted ability to   Time cost and
and actual           resistance to        expand business         uncertainty of
Development          traffic              premises as             development
Control              generation in        business grows          control process
Restrictions.        rural areas

Delivered Actions    Provide              Provide intensive       Provide public
                     intensive            planning support        sector intervention
                     planning             through Lancashire      funding to offset
                     support through      Rural Futures to        some of the risk
                     Lancashire           overcome planning       associated with
                     Rural Futures        objections              development
                     to overcome                                  control process.
Future Actions       Target LCC as        Seek to bring Local     Provide closer
                     Pathfinder lead      Government delivery     working
                     to rural proof its   bodies more closely     relationships
                     Highways             in line within policy   between business
                     policy.              drivers.                support services
                                                                  and development
                                                                  control ideally
                                                                  through the LSP
Recommendations      -Review RSS          Find a balance as       Provide for a more
for Action           policy TR2 to        recommended in the      transparent, cost
                     reflect the          RSS for sustainable     effective and rapid
                     needs of rural       communities that        planning system
                     enterprise.          includes economic       that positively
                     - Review Dept        development of          seeks to
                     of transport         existing and new        encourage
                     highways safety      enterprise.             economic
                     guidance to                                  development
                     reflect rural
Table vi. Cost of   Low supply of         Speculative          Cost of residential
Land/Buildings      workspace within      residential values   property as a barrier
                    Key Service           restricting          to inward migration
                    Centres               workspace
Delivered Actions   Provide intensive     - Focus Rural        - Develop innovative
                    business support      Lancashire           workspace solutions
                    through               Development          such as Live/Work
                    Lancashire Rural      Grant Fund at high   targeting growth
                    Futures to            growth workspace     sector jobs eg
                    overcome planning     projects in order    Brockhall Village,
                    objections and        that gap funding     Halton Mill
                    encourage new         support can be       Development.
                    private sector        provided             - Working alongside
                    investment.           - Undertake          the Housing
                                          Master Planning      Pathfinder create
                                          exercise within      new affordable
                                          Dunsop Bridge to     housing schemes
                                          distinguish          - Encourage
                                          potential housing    housing allocation
                                          sites from           decisions to be
                                          economic sites       aligned with
Future Actions      Increase provision                         -Extend the concept
                    of employment                              of Live/Work to
                    sites within Key                           larger scale
                    service Centres                            development with an
                    through the                                increasing mix of
                    forward planning                           house types and
                    process                                    tenures
                                                               - Business support
                                                               to develop closer
                                                               relationships with
                                                               local housing
                                                               enablers in order
                                                               that need and
                                                               opportunity are
                                                               more closely
Recommendations     Allow for             Increase housing     Through planning
for Action          appropriate green     supply so as to      ensure a balance is
                    field development     reduce speculative   made between
                    when brown field is   incentives           environmental
                    unavailable.                               protection and
                                                               economic need
                                                               within housing
   9. Cross Cutting Themes

Across the Lancashire Pathfinder a number of cross cutting themes are included :
Productivity, Housing and Climate Change. The principle message from the
Enterprise Group is associated with Productivity and this has been addressed.
Housing too has already been highlighted as a key blockage within the enterprise
research. The Cross Cutting theme that has not been addressed is Climate Change.
Using the same process detailed below is the implementation phase of the Enterprise
Climate Change recommendations.

Table vii.           Lack of              Poor Business           Broadband
Low level of High    appropriate          Perception of Key       disadvantage in
Growth               workspace for        service centres         more remote rural
Companies            high growth                                  areas
(Climate change)     sectors

Delivered Actions    - Target             Increase the            Target Lancashire
                     Lancashire Rural     delivery of             Rural Futures
                     Futures support at   landscape and           support at the
                     the creation of      biodiversity            creation of new
                     workspace with       schemes so as to        home working
                     low or zero carbon   further enhance the     opportunities
                     footprint.           attractiveness of the   through ICT so as
                     - Focus Rural        rural Key Service       to reduce travel to
                     Lancashire           Centres as places to    work movements.
                     Development          live and work
                     Grant Fund at high
                     growth workspace
                     projects with
                     sustainable design
                      - Target LRF at
                     the creation of
Future Actions        - Develop new       Encourage local
                     gap funding          communities to
                     options to           relocate businesses
                     encourage            to their place of
                     workspace            residence so as to
                     development that     reduce travel to
                     includes             work movements
Recommendations       - Target Rural      Use Lancashire’s
for Action           Renaissance II       Key Service Centres
                     and RDPE at the      as exemplar
                     use of               examples for the
                     environmental        use of
                     technology           environmental
Table viii.         Highways resistance        Restricted ability    Time cost and
Perceived and       to traffic generation in   to expand             uncertainty of
actual              rural areas                business              development
Development                                    premises as           control process
Control                                        business grows
(Climate Change)

Delivered Actions   Highlight the impact of    Mitigate potential    Ensure high
                    reduced travel to work     environmental         quality planning
                    movements for              impact of             submissions
                    individual projects        expansion within      that incorporate
                                               building design.      environmental
                                               This will now be      technology.
                                               highlighted within
Future Actions      Incorporate the             Highlight the
                    findings of the            impact of reduced
                    Pathfinder transport       travel to work
                    recommendations into       movements for
                    Highways and               individual projects
                    transport policy for       and the
                    rural Lancashire.          environmental
                                               benefits that
Recommendations     Refocus the RSS            Ensure the RSS
for Action          transport policy           Environmental
                    towards a                  Framework is
                    sustainability agenda      embedded within
                    for rural areas that       all Local Delivery
                    includes economic          Frameworks
                    activity in order that
                    the existing travel to
                    work imbalance can be
Table ix. Cost of    Low supply of           Speculative       Cost of residential
Land/Buildings       workspace within        residential       property as a barrier
(Climate Change)     Key Service Centres     values            to inward migration
Delivered Actions    Provide intensive
                     business support
                     through Lancashire
                     Rural Futures to
                     overcome planning
                     objections and
                     encourage new
                     private sector
                     investment that
Future Actions       Increase provision of                     Extend the concept
                     employment sites                          of Live/Work to
                     within Key Service                        larger scale
                     Centres through the                       development. This
                     forward planning                          should include
                     process by                                innovative
                     highlighting the                          environmental
                     environmental                             technology such as
                     benefits of reduced                       community heating
                     travel to work                            systems as a
                     movement                                  planning

Recommendations                              Consider a
for Action                                   locally imposed
                                             development tax
                                             to support
                                             Climate Change

Climate Change will have increasing significance within regeneration and planning
policy. Rural areas have specific advantages in developing economic benefit from the
Climate Change agenda. From reducing travel to work movements to the integration
and supply of environmental technology rural enterprise is already undergoing
10.    Pathfinder Recommendations

Based on the actions and recommendations provided there clearly exists a role for
public intervention within rural development. As previously highlighted there are three
principle forms of public intervention in rural enterprise delivery: Business Support,
Funding and Training. As shown within the research the fourth main influence from
the public sector is Planning. Detailed below are the priority actions as recommended
by the Pathfinder research.

a) Business Support

Priority Objective : Overcome locational barriers and embed high growth enterprise
into rural areas while maintaining the environmental advantage required to attract
Method : -Target business support at growth sectors while maintaining the traditional
landbased sector through environmental support.
    - Encourage the creation and development of fit for purpose rural workspace
    - Deliver Climate Change advice and support to SME’s as part of the core
        business support process.
    - Detailed Planning facilitation will be a core element of business support.
    - Encourage entrepreneurial activity within existing rural communities through
        innovation and business connectivity.


Priority Objective : Target an increasingly scarce resource at priority sectors and
Method :- Support gap funding workspace programs that overcome high rural costs.
    - Facilitate Agri-environmental funding to ensure delivery is targeted and the
         benefits maximised.
    - Target enterprise funding at growth sectors.
    - Provide simple positive incentives to ensure SME’s are encouraged to meet
         Climate Change objectives.


Priority Objective : Mainstream LSC support to meet rural priorities.
Method :- Support entrepreneurial development in dispersed rural communities.
   - Raise awareness of the economic advantages Climate Change can create for
        rural SME’s.


Primary Objective: Provide a positive planning framework for enterprise
development in rural areas.
Method :- Extend positive planning measures for the landbased sector to also
include targeted growth sector enterprises.
    - Embed the Climate Change agenda into planning policy.
    - Recognise that sustainable community development must include enterprise
    - Increase risk taking to ensure innovative solutions are found to reduce travel
       to work imbalance.
    - Ensure economic requirements are built into housing policy decisions
11.    Conclusions

The Pathfinder process has required many of the old assumptions as to what
constitutes rural development to be rejected. If the priority is to encourage
productivity in rural enterprise a fundamental shift in support, funding and planning is
required. Public sector intervention in the traditional landbased sector will continue
but not for economic reasons. With a finite resource available a clear prioritisation
towards growth sectors is required. This support must include both program
intervention and policy change within the development control process. The Climate
Change agenda must be embedded within this process.

If the aim is to create truly sustainable rural communities it needs to be recognised
that this must include sustainable economic activity. If we are to avoid our rural areas
simply becoming dormitories and theme parks the existing urban centric policy
process needs to change. Given positive support rural communities can maintain
their valuable environmental assets while providing real productivity growth for the
wider economy.


Hindle R (2006) Lancashire Rural Delivery
Pathfinder - A Study into the Economic Functionality of Lancashire’s Rural Towns