Women Tourism Entrepreneurs and the Survival of Family Farms in North East England

Lavinia Wilson-Youlden, Gary R F Bosworth


Farm tourism can enhance the sustainability of farming and rural economies, and this creates new roles for women in family farms. This paper investigates the experiences and start-up motives of women providers of commercial hospitality on family farms in North East England. An interpretative approach explored the lived experiences of 16 women providing accommodation on their family farm. Findings indicate complex motives, encompassing a mix of personal, economic, family and farm business reasons for starting their businesses. The research informs rural policymakers and provides an understanding of the intrinsic factors and entrepreneurial traits that motivate women to start farm-based hospitality.

Keywords: rural enterprise; farm tourism; hospitality; female entrepreneurship

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The Journal of Rural and Community Development is supported by SSHRC.