Acquisition helps Rural Solutions move into the North West

RURAL planning and development firm Rural Solutions has acquired a business in the North West, allowing it to expand into the region.

The company, which is based at Broughton Hall, near Skipton, and recorded £750,000 in revenues in its latest financial year, has bought Rural Innovation for an undisclosed sum.

Rural Solutions says the move comes partly as a result of new planning regulations that bring “enhanced opportunities for sustainable rural development” while strengthening the expertise the company is able to offer to both public and private sector clients.

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Managing director William Fry said: “During the past three years, we’ve established a strong reputation as a company offering quality bespoke planning and development services for rural customers. These are exciting times for rural communities.

“Earlier this year, new planning regulations were introduced which enable appropriate and sustainable development in rural areas. This long overdue change will breathe new life into our rural communities, optimise their future sustainability and maximise their economic potential.

“We have already seen an increase in demand for our services and we’ve grown by 36 per cent every year since 2009. We’ve also expanded from a team of three people in one small office to 18 people in Yorkshire and the South East – so it made perfect sense for us to seize this opportunity to grow further and expand into the North West.”

Rob Hindle, who ran Rural Innovation, which has an annual turnover of £500,000 to £600,000, has joined the team at Rural Solutions.

He said: “I have specialised in rural development for more than 20 years working with both public and private sector clients to enhance the future sustainability of rural communities and estates through strategic planning and the sensitive development of new housing, workspace, leisure and tourism facilities.

“Bringing the two businesses together makes perfect sense at a time of increased opportunity as we can combine our specialist services.”

Rural Innovation did not employ anyone directly, but worked with retained self-employed contractors. Mr Hindle’s base was in the Ribble Valley in Lancashire, but now he will divide his time between Broughton Hall and the Rural Innovation office.