Government Minister George Freeman MP Nominated for The Norfolk Way

George Freeman MP

George Freeman MP

London, UK – March 5, 2015 – George Freeman, MP for Mid-Norfolk and Minister at the Department of Health and the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills, has been shortlisted from over 100 candidates this year for the 3rd Annual Grassroot Diplomat Initiative Award. The award recognises outstanding politicians and diplomats who are representing civilian interests at the highest level in areas of policy, social and business overall. Mr Freeman is nominated for his work on The Norfolk Way. 

As said by the MP, The Norfolk Way is the reason why he is involved in politics. Founded in 2007, Mr Freeman created The Norfolk Way to inspire entrepreneurial activity and raise aspirations in an area too often dismissed by Whitehall as a ‘rural backwater’. Known for its rich heritage of villages and markets, Norfolk is traditionally rural with dependency on agriculture and historic issues over large-scale over-development. A historic lack of opportunity has also meant that many young people tend to leave Norfolk for opportunities elsewhere in London or other cities. 

Supported by donations and sponsorships, The Norfolk Way campaign exists to encourage rural entrepreneurship by creating a culture of innovation through the bringing together of schools, local businesses, entrepreneurs and civic leaders. The project awards bursaries of up to £500 to school leavers not entering universities to inspire entrepreneurial behaviour and offers young people practical work and enterprise experience in a business environment to inspire them to become an entrepreneur themselves. The alumni network Norfolk Way Fellow also encourages a spirit of collaboration and mentorship to former winners who have since taken up work. 

“A vibrant village needs jobs in it,” says Mr Freeman. “With a more decentralised approach to development promoting small numbers of new businesses and houses in more of our villages, we are in the process of building a vibrant and sustainable rural economy, driving a true ‘Rural Renaissance’. The Norfolk Way is a project intended to champion this vision of development, highlight best practice in Norfolk and elsewhere to show it is possible, and help continuing to develop policies in local and national Government to promote it.” 

In addition to the Rural Enterprise Bursaries, Mr Freeman has also set up The Norfolk Way Innovation Awards and a Local Business Spotlight.

Talyn Rahman-Figueroa, Executive Director of Grassroot Diplomat, said: “All too often, we hear stories of our governments not representing our needs but Grassroot Diplomat looks upon selfless individuals who work tirelessly for their communities. The award seeks to create a culture of positive role models within our governments which encourages others in power to follow suit.”

Mr Freeman is a very passionate advocate for the role of enterprise in a renaissance of civic responsibility. He is a big believer of fellowship and teaching people a sense of connectiveness which is exactly what The Norfolk Way promotes. His vision is to see Norfolk thrive as a hub of enterprise with a mixed working age community who have a sense of responsibility and trust. 

Formerly founder of the Positive Politics and Mind The Gap campaigns, George Freeman has decades of experience of grassroots campaigning to tackle disillusionment and marginalisation.

Join George Freeman MP and other government nominees for the gala dinner at The May Fair Hotel, London on Thursday 5thMarch 2015. For ticket information please visit: or call 07511 816689.

Further details about the awards can be found on:


About Grassroot Diplomat

Grassroot Diplomat is a non-profit diplomatic consultancy with the mission to facilitate trust and better communication between governments and civil society. As an independent agency, Grassroot Diplomat shows no allegiance to a solitary government but will act in the interest of the people, no matter where they are or what state their country is in. We do this by developing, strengthening, and facilitating relationships between governments and civil society stakeholders on a project-by-project basis. 


Nina Maxwell

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Flora Noble
Office of George Freeman MP
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