Village pubs at risk, says report

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One in three villages has seen a local pub or shop close in the past year, according to new 

Wales and the north-west of England were the worst-hit parts of the country, with almost half of some villages losing a pub, while Northern Ireland had the highest number of rural shop closures, a survey of 1,250 rural residents showed.

Insurance firm NFU Mutual said more supermarkets were moving into rural areas, with one in five of those questioned saying a new store had opened in their area in the past 12 months.

Confidence in local economies was low, the report added.