NEFRAN brings together a network of stakeholders in the North East to support the growth of businesses in the rural parts of the region.

​Established in 2011, the North East Farming & Rural Advisory Network combines rural voices for the area and works closely with regional and national bodies including the North East Local Enterprise Partnership, the North East Combined Authority and the Department for Environment, Farming and Rural Affairs (Defra) and its agencies.

The network has took a key role in leading the development of the £5m North East Rural Growth Network pilot, delivering enterprise and growth activity in the rural parts of Durham, Gateshead and Northumberland.
The purpose of NEFRAN is to:-
  • To champion rural issues and collaboratively develop solutions;
  • To provide the collective voice of local rural independent stakeholders;
  • To influence the local, national and European agenda in respect of issues affecting rural North East England;
  • To provide a key source of advice on issues, concerns and good practice to both Defra and the North East Local Enterprise Partnership;
  • To create a flexible forum and two-way channel of communication into and from rural stakeholders and delivery organisations; and
  • To provide relevant evidence and intelligence to empower its Chair to have effective one to one dialogue with the Defra minister.