Business goes on the road

A POPULAR business event has been rolled out to Morpeth.

Newcastle Science City has left the confines of the city behind to take its First Friday networking events on the road.

The initiative aims to promote innovation in rural businesses after research at Newcastle University’s Centre for Rural Economy found that support agencies were not always recognising innovation in the countryside, while businesses were unaware of the help available.

Morpeth’s Central Bean coffee shop in Sanderson Arcade was chosen as the venue for the first rural meeting last week.

Programme Manager Caroline Findlay said: “Because we have city in our title that doesn’t mean we are confined to urban environments, but it was coming together with the Northern Rural Network that really stimulated us to think about how we could get more involved with the business community beyond the urban areas.

“The Science City themes of sustainability, ageing and the digital economy are critical across the whole region and there are opportunities in rural, as well as urban based businesses, in meeting those challenges.

“It is important that they are able to benefit from the support and networking opportunities we offer. Taking First Fridays out on the road is just the first step, a taster for these businesses of how we can encourage rural enterprise.”