13th September 2001




A new report highlighting the stress suffered by people living in rural parts of Lincolnshire is to be launched tomorrow (Friday).


‘Dispelling the Myth of the Rural Idyll’ was compiled by Beth Harding for the Lincolnshire Rural Stress Network and will be launched at the University of Lincolnshire & Humberside at 10am.


At the same time a new link-up will be announced between the network and the Lincolnshire Institute for Health at the university.


The institute will provide a base for teaching and research to support the Rural Stress Network, a collection of public, private and voluntary agencies who help people to deal with stress.


The report makes a number of findings, including the following:


·        existing agencies only respond to cries for help – they are not proactive

·        there are gaps in information and in access to information about stress

·        poor transport links cause social isolation and exclusion, which exacerbate stress

·        stress in rural areas mostly affects the old and the unemployed

·        young mothers suffer from stress due to finance and relationship problems

·        there is a lack of services for young mothers such as mother and toddler groups, formal childcare, playgroups and parenting classes

·        people who suffer from stress don’t visit their doctor early enough


“The link between the Lincolnshire Institute for Health and the Rural Stress Network is there to address the specific needs of rural communities and farmers,” commented Martin Page, a lecturer in Health Studies at the university.


“Our university is uniquely situated to carry out research into the health needs of the rural community, so we’re very keen to forge new links in rural areas.”


Among those expected to attend tomorrow’s event are the Rev Alan Robson, chairman of the Rural Stress Network and Agricultural Chaplain for Lincolnshire, Dr John Wynn-Jones, head of the Institute for Rural Health, report author Beth Harding and Terry Miller, county ecumenical officer for rural affairs.


For more information contact: Jez Ashberry, Press and Media Relations Manager

University of Lincolnshire & Humberside

Tel: 01522 886042