Two north Northumberland businesses are in the running for Rural Oscars as the shortlist for the top awards scheme is revealed.
The North East’s finalists for the 2012 Countryside Alliance Awards have been announced and businesses are vying for one of five regional titles and the chance of national acclaim.
In the butcher category, R Green and Son in Longframlington has been nominated for the third year in a row.
The family company, which will celebrate 125 years in business next year, won the title in 2010 and was highly commended last year.
Owner Chris Green said: “The category looks at excellence in butchery skills, butchers who source local, quality meats, how the business supports the rural community and animal welfare being high on the agenda, so we are thrilled to be named as a finalist, especially as we are the only butcher in Northumberland to be named as a finalist.
“It is quite an achievement. It has been very difficult for everybody, but being nominated spurs us on.”
In the start-up category, Eleanor’s Byre, at Spitalford near Embleton, which was set up two years ago, has been shortlisted.
Owner Elizabeth Robertson said: “We’re very flattered to be nominated. I don’t know who did it, but I’m very grateful. I’m sure there will be some stiff competition, but we’ll work jolly hard at it.”
The Countryside Alliance Awards, now in their eighth year, celebrate the characters, skills, traditions and enterprise of the countryside through the people who work so hard to make it tick.
Countryside Alliance North East regional director Simon Hamlyn said: “It is exciting to see such a diverse range of rural businesses included in this list and I look forward to meeting the people behind each shop counter.
“The North East continues to have a tough year with bad weather affecting the harvest and tourism.
“It is vital that we support our small rural businesses through this time and help to revive our rural economy – celebrating them in the Rural Oscars gives them a well-deserved boost.”