Six Northumberland companies are in the running to be named the best rural businesses in the UK after being shortlisted for a regional Rural Business Award.

Carnaby’s of Cathill, GlamPods Northumberland, Alnwick’s SDS Livestock and Play the Field, Spent Shells from Hexham and CLiddle Consulting from Stocksfield have all been shortlisted for awards at the 2019/2020 Rural Business Awards, held in partnership with Amazon.

The local companies will battle it out against fellow rural businesses, entrepreneurs and enterprises from across the region for a place at the national final.

The regional final will be held at Newcastle University on October 11, with the National Final taking place early next year.

Carnaby’s, GlamPods, SDS Livestock and Spent Shells have all been shortlisted in the Best Rural Startup Business category. Set up and run by sisters Caroline & Clare and Caroline’s daughter, Amelia, Carnaby’s is a family-run destination stop, situated just off the A1. Carnaby’s was designed to provide an eating place and a retail opportunity for both locals and road-weary travellers. A range of top-quality gift items, homeware and fashion is also available for sale. Carnaby’s has also been shortlisted in the Best Rural Retail Business award.

GlamPods Northumberland is a luxury Glamping Site, comprising three Wooden Pods and a Lapland BBQ Hut, situated in the Rede Valley area of the beautiful Northumberland National Park.

SDS Livestock is a livestock agent that achieved a turnover of £1m in its first year of trading. Livestock SDS plays a major role in marketing stock which is sold to farmers, who further finish the animals.

Spent Shells is a field-to-fashion gift company, making recycling glamorous. Using by-products from a rural eco-farm in Northumberland, Spent Shells formed as a way to limit ‘waste’ from country life and appreciate beauty which would otherwise be disposed of.

CLiddle Consulting has been shortlisted in the Best Rural Digital, Communications or Media Business category. CLiddle Consulting from Stocksfield is a Marketing and Market Research Consultancy offering full-service support for large and small businesses. Play the Field, from Alnwick, has also been shortlisted in the Best Rural Digital, Communications or Media Business category. Play the Field offers affordable marketing services to small business owners.

The Rural Business Awards 2019/2020, in partnership with Amazon, will mark the Awards’ fifth year of celebrating the success of businesses across the UK’s rural economy – a segment which employs in excess of 3.4 million people in over 750,000 businesses in England alone. The Awards are organised by rural business for rural business with the aim of celebrating the achievements of rural businesses and developing a strong network for rural business owners.

Speaking after being shortlisted for an award, Deb Walton from GlamPods Northumberland said:

“It’s a great achievement to be shortlisted for a Rural Business Award. We’re proud of our new rural business and our fantastic team, so to get recognition like this from Amazon and the Rural Business Awards is a massive boost for us. It is an honour to be invited to the ceremony later this year and we are looking forward to meeting like-minded organisations from rural communities across the region.”

“Amazon has proudly supported the Rural Business Awards since 2016 and each year, the quality of the entries gets better and better,” said Doug Gurr, UK Country Manager, Amazon. “I’d like to congratulate the businesses from Northumberland and wish them and their regional peers the best of luck on the Awards night.”

Director and Co-Founder of The Rural Business Awards, Anna Price, added: “The 2019/2020 Awards have seen record numbers of entries and it’s encouraging to see so many rural businesses express a desire to celebrate their successes on a regional and national scale. We are passionate about creating a nurturing environment where rural businesses can develop, and this starts by showcasing the great work they do. On behalf of everyone at the Rural Business Awards, we want to say well done to all the shortlisted businesses and wish them luck ahead of the regional finals.”

The Rural Business Awards is the brainchild of Leicestershire businesswomen Anna Price and Jemma Clifford, who wanted to showcase the wealth of entrepreneurial talent in rural areas of Britain.

The Awards are organised by rural business for rural business, with winners in the 12 categories – ranging from Best Rural Start-up and Best Rural Diversification Project; through to Best Rural Professional Services Business and Best Rural Social Enterprise, Charity or Community Project – decided by an independent panel of judges drawn from the rural business sector, rural public sector agencies, and rural charitable organisations.

The Rural Business Awards is hosting a series of regional finals in the North, East, Midlands, South East, South West, Wales and Northern Ireland, throughout October and November 2019, ahead of the National Final next February.