Nominations for the 2019 Scottish Rural Awards are now open, with businesses across Scotland's countryside encouraged to get involved.
The ultimate benchmark of success in Scotland's countryside, the Scottish Rural Awards are now in their fifth year and are partnered by Scottish Field and the Scottish Countryside Alliance.
A set of 13 categories are open for nominations, including the coveted Rural Hero award, which recognises those whose contributions to their rural communities have gone above and beyond the call of duty.
Last year's awards drew over 250 nominees from across the country, with previous award winners including Glenwyvis Distillery, Wild Hearth Bakery and Xanthella.
Businesses have until Monday 22nd October to put their nomination forward. Businesses can either self-nominate, or be nominated by a friend, family member, customer or member of the public.
The full list of awards categories and criteria, along with nomination forms, are available from the Scottish Rural Awards website - www.scottishruralwards.org
. There is no cost associated with making a nomination.
Richard Bath, Editor of Scottish Field, said: 'Showing our readers the joys of the Scottish countryside is one of the main aims of Scottish Field, so our partnership with the awards is a perfect fit. More than ever before, Scotland’s rural communities are displaying a remarkable amount of energy, innovation and imagination as they diversify existing businesses and create new and exciting opportunities from scratch. As a magazine, Scottish Field is constantly writing about the rural entrepreneurs who are bringing wealth and jobs to the countryside, so it’s exciting for us to be able to honour the men and women who are doing so much to make the economy of rural Scotland a true success story.’
Jamie Stewart of the Scottish Countryside Alliance said: 'Land-based businesses contribute over £2billion to the Scottish economy. Despite the multiple challenges they face, they are hugely valuable brand ambassadors for Scotland, and many provide vital support to their local communities. These awards give Scotland a chance to recognise the resilience, innovation and contribution that rurally-based people and businesses make to its success.'
Finalists will be announced at the beginning of December 2018, with winners revealed at the Scottish Rural Awards ceremony and gala dinner, which will take place in March 2019.