We are encouraging farmers, foresters and land managers to apply for the new 2019 Countryside Stewardship Scheme as the application window has opened this week.
Countryside Stewardship Scheme agreements can provide a viable, long-term source of income to those who deliver environmental benefits on their land – including habitats for wildlife, pollinator plots and increased biodiversity.
The Scheme is run by Catchment Sensitive Farming which is a partnership between Defra, the Environment Agency and Natural England. The organisations work together with farmers and organisations in priority areas across England to improve water and air quality.
Richard Corbett, Partner with Roger Parry & Partners said, “Farmers and land owners need to think about entering this scheme sooner rather than later. Application packs must be requested before 31 May so whilst filling your Basic Payment Scheme claim form it’s worth having a think about what you could change on your land to bring in some extra money by way of this agri-environment scheme.
Farmers and land managers who are new to taking on environmental work or with expired or expiring Environmental Stewardship agreements can apply for:
- Mid Tier – Farmers and land managers can choose from all available multi-year options and capital items to form an agreement which delivers local environmental benefits.
- Higher Tier – Applicants managing more complex land in environmentally significant sites, commons or woodlands which requires support from Natural England or the Forestry Commission.
- Wildlife Offers – Designed to help guide farmers to the most straightforward options for their farm type, making it easier and simpler to secure a CS agreement. Offers are split into different packages for farm types: arable, lowland grazing, upland, and mixed farming.
- Hedgerows and Boundaries – Provides grants for farmers to restore existing farm boundaries and hedgerows on their land.
The introduction of the Agriculture Bill in September 2018 signalled a step-change in how farmers will be paid once the UK leaves the EU. Funding for environmental benefits and public goods will be at the front and centre of future policy, meaning those who get into CS agreements now will be well-placed to benefit from the future scheme.
Richard added, “Roger Parry & Partners have had great success in submitting Countryside Stewardship Scheme applications for clients, with applications in 2017 alone amounting to over £190,000 of income for farmers and over £90,000 worth of Capital items.
“For more information about the Scheme and if you need our assistance to apply please call us. Oswestry – Richard Corbett and Rosina Bloor: 01691 655334. Minsterley - Charis Denham: 01743 791336. Welshpool and Llanidloes - Clare Williams: 01938 554499.”