There is strong demand for single payment entitlements but fairly limited supply in the run up to the 2 April deadline for buying entitlements for 2012 use.

English non-SDA entitlements were selling for around £235-240/ha this week, about £15 below last year’s average, George Paton of agents WebbPaton said.

“Far more entitlements have been traded to this date this year than we have ever seen before. Farmers are effectively buying a guaranteed two years of future CAP payments and maybe even three years. But volumes of entitlement currently available are far less than this time last year and we could do with more to sell.”

There had also been strong demand for English SDA and Moorland entitlements, which were worth £200-210/ha and £30-35/ha respectively, Chris Allen from Townsend charted surveyors said.

Mr Paton was also keen to identify farmers who made an SPS claim in 2011 and had subsequently retired, or were about to retire from agriculture this year.

Subject to the outcome of CAP reform proposals, which stated that to be an active farmer for the new system the business must have claimed in 2011, those who had retired and made an SPS claim in 2011 could have an asset with a tradeable value in 2014-15, he said.

Anyone who wants to transfer entitlements for SPS 2012, must return their completed Request for changes to the Rural Land Register and for the transfer of entitlements (RLE 1) form to the Rural Payments Agency by 2 April 2012 at the latest. Any RLE 1 forms received after that will be effective for SPS 2013.

To get an RLE 1, a copy of the RLE 1 guidance or a checklist to help fill in the RLE 1, visit the RPA website or call 0845 603 7777.