Nuts and bolts of claiming SPS – Where to get forms, Do’s and Don’ts and key dates

Drop-in centres

Drop-in centres will be open for receipt of completed SPS application forms and supporting documents from 3 March to 9 June 2008, 8.30am to 5.00pm Monday to Friday. They will be closed Bank Holidays and weekends, except for 10/11 May and 7/8 June.

Agents delivering large numbers of forms on behalf of many customers may book an appointment in advance, to avoid causing long queues.

Blank forms will be available at Drop-in Centres from 14 April.

Drop-in Centres are in old MAFF regional offices and RPA regional offices at:

  • Bristol
  • Carlisle
  • Crewe
  • Exeter
  • Newcastle
  • Newmarket
  • Northallerton
  • Nottingham
  • Reading
  • Worcester
  • Workington

Key dates for 2008

  • 1 March-31 July Hedgerows must not be cut during this period
  • 15 May Closing date for applications without penalty and date at which you must have SPS land at your disposal
  • 31 May Final date for amendments to previously submitted claim forms
  • 9 June Final date for late applications to be considered
  • 30 June 2007 payment window closes
  • 16 October Payments may only be made by BACS transfer from now on
  • 1 December 2008 payment window opens

Further information

Customer Service Centre 0845 603 7777 or

Do’s and Don’ts


  • Sign your form at Part I
  • Use black biro, not blue
  • Use original RPA forms only
  • Complete the field data sheets in hectares, to two decimal places
  • Attach sticky bar codes to any covering letters or attachments
  • Pay the right postage and get a receipt
  • Use valid 2008 crop codes (see Annex B of guidance notes)
  • Tell the RPA if you have an interest in any other UK farming business


  • Use pencil, felt pen or correction fluid
  • Use photocopies or computer-generated forms
  • Remove staples or unused pages from the form
  • Cross through incorrect data on the field data sheet. (Use the delete line box.)
  • Fold the form and put it in a smaller envelope
  • Forget to sign the form – still the most common error.

Payment rates

The 2008 SFP will be based on 55% of the entitlement holder’s historic subsidy receipts and a 45% flat rate element. The euro/sterling exchange rate will be taken at the end of September. There will be compulsory EU modulation of 5%, plus 13% additional national modulation. Energy crops will get a €45/ha premium, and protein crops a €55.57/ha payment.