European Rural Parliament Manifesto approved in Austria last week
by Deborah Clarke, Village Halls/ Rural Evidence Manager

A delegation of 5 members of the ACRE Network attended the European Rural Parliament gathering in Schärding in Austria last week. They joined over 200 people representing 40 European countries to approve a European Rural Manifesto.

“We were pleased to have been able to take part in this second European Rural Parliament and to have been able to contribute to the Manifesto said Deborah Clarke from ACRE.

The Manifesto calls upon the European Union for full recognition of the right of rural communities to a quality of life and standard of living equal to that of urban populations. ACRE is a member of the European Rural Community Alliance and England’s lead body for the European Rural Parliament.

The European Rural Parliament is jointly initiated by three European rural networks the European Rural Community Alliance; PREPARE Partnership for Rural Europe and European LEADER Association for Rural Development.

“We were pleased to have been able to take part in this second European Rural Parliament and to have been able to contribute to the Manifesto said Deborah Clarke from ACRE.

“We submitted a report to the Parliament in July and helped to shape the Manifesto through field visits, plenary sessions and workshops at the event in Schärding. It was a privilege to meet and work with so many people from across and outside the EU.

“ACRE has been asked to present a copy of the Manifesto to Defra by the European Rural Parliament organisers who will continue to enable the actions called for within the manifesto, in co-operation with national and European partners, governments and institutions”

Ends 10 November 2015

Notes for Editors

  1. The Rural Manifesto, debated and agreed by all participants at the European Rural Parliament
  2. The ACRE Network is formed of ACRE and its members the 38 rural community councils based at county level across rural England
  3. The European Rural Parliament is jointly initiated by three pan-European rural networks: European Rural Community Alliance (ERCA), PREPARE Partnership for Rural Europe and European LEADER Association for Rural Development (ELARD). Members of these networks are found throughout the EU and in the Western Balkan and Black Sea countries.
  4. The ERP Campaign is under the auspices of the Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Mr Thorbjørn Jagland; and is co-funded by the European Commission though the Europe for Citizens programme.
  5. The ERP 2015 Gathering was held in Schärding in Upper Austria. It was hosted by Sauwald-Pramtal Local Action Group and Schärding Town Council, organised by the Projects4 and grant-aided by the governments of Austria and Upper Austria.
  6. The Gathering was attended by people from rural communities in almost all the EU countries, plus Albania, Armenia, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Kosovo, Iceland, Norway, Serbia, Turkey and Ukraine.
  7. More information can be found at www.europeanruralparliament.com

Joint Coordinators, European Rural Parliament 2015

Michael Dower (PREPARE) +44 1308 863515, e-mail: mdower6@btinternet.com

Vanessa Halhead (ERCA)
+44 1381 600736 M. +44 7753834910, e-mail: vanessa@duthchas.org.uk