01 August 2016 04:18:00

Thriving and Healthy

Exploring themes at the heart of Devon

We are launching our fifth Rural Futures Conference, the annual gathering concerned with rural issues in Devon. The Conference has become an established feature in the County’s calendar and we hope you will join us.

Our audience is drawn from those who inspire, lead, organise and administer our communities: parish councillors, local authority members, officers from the public services, community buildings and assets co-ordinators, sport and play representatives, charities supporting rural communities, local schools, organisations and businesses.

Our theme, Thriving and Healthy, examines health and well-being issues at a significant time when they are evolving to meet the needs of communities. There are now, more than ever, increasing opportunities and potential to harness the power of the wider community to support people in their own homes, combat social isolation and improve health and well-being in our rural communities .

As ever, we have an eclectic mix of topics that reflect the many topical and underlying issues and opportunities that come from rural living and well-being. We range from the national strategy for rural communities, through various elements of community living to our jewel, our natural environment.

Creating a space for living  


This year we have invited a Minister from DEFRA to set the scene for the day by exploring the national strategy for rural communities:  ‘Creating a great place for living’.

Enterprising Devon

Stuart Horne

We then get down to the practicalities with Stuart Horne from Business Information Point, to explore how traditional and new markets are developing of which community based health and social care services will be a growing feature; innovative approaches to business; developing a high worth and flexible economy.

Work related learning for young people


How do we help young people develop the skills, knowledge and healthy lifestyles that match the needs of our developing economy? 

We have turned to the National Foundation for Education Research to find out how to make work related learning a meaningful and motivating route into the world of work.

Keeping a sense of place

Dan Janota

Our sense of place is highly developed in Devon’s communities and change is threatening, perhaps heralding the loss of valued characteristics. Dartmoor National Park Authority conducted a major consultation with the community of Chagford about the town’s future. Dan Janota, Senior Forward Planner at DNPA and Chris Park from the town’s design statement team, explore how development and identity have been successfully married.

Living in the countryside as an older person

Age UK

Rural communities are more elderly than urban centres, so how do individuals and communities adapt to make rural retirement a positive and healthy experience?

Devon naturally

Devon Wildlife Trust

We take a look into the future of our natural environment with DWT. Discussing topical issues such as ‘re-wilding’ - how do we develop community engagement with the natural environment and encourage people to make the most of the healthy lifestyle activities our natural environment can offer? What are the social and economic benefits?

New service coming to Devon

Optum Healthcare

Many of us could benefit from making small changes in our day to day wellbeing.

Optum invite you to come and find out about a new, free service that is being launched to help people throughout Devon to set goals and improve their wellbeing in one or more of the following areas – smoking, alcohol, achieving and maintaining healthy weight and improving physical activity.

Speakers have been chosen for their expertise and their ability to engage an audience and you will have opportunities to question them. We aim to inspire you, to increase your understanding and to get you thinking about those issues affecting our county.

Speakers and programme may be subject to change

The Marketplace

To book your 2m x 2m stand please apply below. Limited spaces available.  


 We look forward to seeing you there!