This is the Lancashire butchers nominated for a 'rural Oscar' in the Countryside Alliance Awards

Is this the best butchers in the North?
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A Lancashire butchers is in the running for a 'rural Oscar'.

A&D Parkinson Ltd in The Square, Great Eccleston, is a finalist in the best butcher section of the Countryside Alliance Awards, and the only Lancashire business named across the board.

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Leonie Cooper has owned the butcher's shop for five years, having worked there for eight years previously. On the shortlisting, she said: "We're a small butcher - others around here are very commercial. We make everything from scratch, including our sausages and artisan food, whereas other places buy things in jars." She added: "We're also very attentive to our little community and employ local people and we're like a friendly family."

Produce made at the butchers is sold at The Courtyard Cafe in the village square, also owned by Leonie.

In total, 26 rural businesses from across the North of England have been shortlisted for the Countryside Alliance Awards, after thousands of nominations from across the country were whittled down to a final few. Winners will be chosen via a public vote, and they will go on to represent the region at the House of Lords in the national champions reception in June.

Butcher Leonie CooperButcher Leonie Cooper
Butcher Leonie Cooper
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There are five categories including, ‘best pub’, ‘best village shop/ post office’, ‘best butcher’, ‘best for local food a drink’ and the ‘rural enterprise award’. The businesses are judged on a range of criteria including their passion and commitment, sense of community, championing local food and the energy and diversity of their business. 

Countryside Alliance Director of Policy Sarah Lee said: “We've received a wealth of nominations from the public this year, showcasing a multitude of exceptional businesses in the North. Each business plays a meaningful role in their community, and what sets the Rural Oscars apart is their emphasis on honouring the individuals behind these businesses, rather than just their products or services. Given the challenging circumstances faced by many rural businesses around the country, it's essential for all of us to demonstrate support in any way possible. We encourage as many people as possible to get voting today.” 

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