We are just starting a very exciting new project working with Marieke Navin at Cheshire East Council to explore how to connect rural areas to the creative economy. Two exploratory trips have already produced insights by talking to representatives from the WEAVE network and the SHIFT initiative, visiting Forest Gin in Macclesfield Forest, talking to the organisers of Barnaby Festival and attending a rural growth event at Reaseheath College. So much going on in nooks and crannies all around the area.
Everywhere we go, we chat to local people in shops, churches and organisations asking them about their area and what they think about the key issues. Lack of public transport and Broadband are the big ones. it seems. It would have taken me 2.5 hours to get from Manchester to Reaseheath College by public transport so I see what they mean! For people on limited incomes and/or no car, how does this affect their work prospects?