The UK has many inspiring examples of rural communities working together to improve their area, save services and tackle issues that impact them. The Rural Community Co-operative Awards are a celebration of all their achievements and celebrate the hard work and success of all involved.

Helen Fospero is a well-respected TV journalist, known for her warmth and professionalism. Her career started in newspapers, and she became a correspondent and presenter of live rolling news for Sky and from there a host and newsreader on ITV’s GMTV. Helen also produced and presented a one hour Great British Pub special on BBC One’s The One Show featuring pub campaigner / actor Neil Stuke and Suggs from Madness. Five million people tuned in to see why so many pubs are closing down & under threat, and how communities up and down the country are fighting to save their local.

James Alcock, General Manager at Plunkett Foundation, said: “We are delighted to have Helen Fospero as the presenter for our annual awards. The event is always a great celebration of rural communities across the UK and, having Helen involved will make the event extra special for all our shortlisted groups who will be there on the day.”

Judging will take place in November with shortlisted community co-operatives attending the ceremony at the St Bride Foundation on Wednesday 6 December.

To date, 348 community shops and 52 pubs have been saved as community co-operatives with an increasing number of other businesses also choosing the model, from cafes and local hubs to farms, distilleries and broadband projects.

About the Awards – The Community Co-operative Awards are run by the national charity Plunkett Foundation and kindly sponsored by Hastoe Housing Association, alongside other sponsors BCRS Business Loans, Suma, The Phone Co-op, Co-operative Group, Fram Farmers and Community & Co-operative Finance.