Change that leads to better lives

Older People and Rural Issues

This summary publication is for you if you are one of the people involved in the Rural Wisdom work in Scotland or Wales - maybe as Development Workers, older people and others in rural communities, partners or stakeholders in Rural Wisdom sites.

Whatever your role, we hope this will help you identify key policy drivers and use these to:

  • draw out key messages to share more widely
  • access underlying policy to support challenge and change
  • stimulate thinking and further investigation

to support rural communities, using learning from Rural Wisdom to feed into and develop policy.

Download the Summary Paper in English

Download the Summary Paper in Welsh

Rural Wisdom Older People Rural Issues

Key Reflections:

  • Policies that are relevant to older people and rural communities are increasingly taking a rights-based, strength-based approach to older people’s wellbeing.
  • They recognise the importance of co-production and local communities’ contribution to decision making and service design and/or provision.
  • There is relatively little about older people in rural communities specifically.
  • Much of the rural legislation is concerned with the economy, planning and the physical environment, rather than how people live in local communities.
  • Approaches to supporting and sustaining rural communities in Wales and Scotland have often been led by the availability of EU funding programmes.
  • Recent progress in Scottish Government policy affecting people in rural communities includes the introduction of rural impact assessments and asset transfer policies.
  • There are starting to be opportunities for asset transfer to communities in Wales too, but it is important that asset transfer – wherever it takes place - should always be used for community benefit rather than be about local authorities transferring services.
  • This partnership approach is also vital to translate policy into practice so it can have a positive effect on older people living in rural areas. Otherwise, as Rural Wisdom and other programmes have found there is likely to be a ‘policy - on the ground divide’.
  • Successful implementation of policies will rely on local organisations and people taking the initiative and working together to use policies as hooks to make change happen.
  • The Covid 19 pandemic has highlighted a collaborative approach with local communities and third sector organisations coming to the fore with flexible, person centred support. Where local authorities and partners have worked with communities to do this in a non-siloed, joined up way, it has been effective in providing support and increasing community connections and resilience.

Contact Details

Dr Victoria Mason-Angelow
Tel: 01225 255 268
Email: Victoria.Mason-Angelow@ndti.org.uk

Contact Office

Bath (Registered Office)

National Development Team for Inclusion
4 Queen Street
Bath
BA1 1HE

Full Details

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