Know How / Payments, schemes and grants

Support payments are a vital income stream for almost every farm business – whether they are delivered through the Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) or one of a range of agri-environment schemes.

This page offers the latest news on the main schemes operating across each of the devolved regions and also highlights other opportunities for farmers to access grant funds.

Key areas of focus:

  • Basic Payment Scheme developments
  • Agri-environment grant schemes
  • Grants to support equipment purchases
  • Rural development grant funding
  • Bursaries and scholarships

Case studies

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How land drainage project is benefiting grazing and wildlife

A £2m project benefiting farmers and the environment is being heralded as a blueprint for similar land management schemes after the UK leaves the European Union. Bringing together conservationists, landowners…


Video: Exmoor group tackles farm support and rural isolation

The unique and thriving farmer-led Exmoor Hill Farming Network has grown to support 300 local farming businesses since it began four years ago under the guidance of chairman Dave Knight…


Video: How Gloucs farmers are working to prevent flooding

Farmers and landowners in Gloucestershire’s Upper Thames area are working together to manage the land to provide catchment-scale solutions to prevent future floods while making businesses resilient.  When storms Eva…


5 successful Leader grant projects to inspire farmers

Many farmers want to improve the resilience of their business by innovating or diversifying – but the level of investment required can be daunting. Farmers Weekly talked to five farmers…


Scheme shows the benefits of grazing cattle in the uplands

A new Higher Level Stewardship (HLS) scheme could change the way stock is grazed on upland areas, with farmers raving of the benefits of re-introducing cattle to upland commons. The…


Prince's Dairy Initiative helps Yorkshire farm business

Joining the Prince’s Dairy Initiative (PDI) has provided some useful insights into the management and performance of a small Holstein Friesian herd on a rented farm in North Yorkshire. The…

Practical advice

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How to get your bid in for £35m diversification grant scheme

Farmers have just three months to lodge their initial bids for funding under a new £35m rural grant programme. The scheme, run by the Rural Development Programme for England (RDPE),…


Natural capital: What it is and how to value it on your farm

The importance of protecting and improving the environment is something farmers have always been aware of, but public awareness of the issue, and with it the government’s focus, has sharpened…


Tips and reminders for English BPS 2019 applications

With fewer than two weeks until the 15 May deadline for BPS 2019 claims, Alice De Soer at the Central Association of Agricultural Valuers (CAAV) gives essential tips about applying…


How to avoid EFA pitfalls in 2019

Defra has tightened the double-funding rules, with implications for farmers as they make this year’s Ecological Focus Area (EFA) calculations. George Badger, farm consultant with Strutt & Parker, explains the…


Basic Payment Scheme – tips for applying in 2019

With the Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) application window open across the UK by the end of this week, Alice De Soer at the Central Association of Agricultural Valuers (CAAV) offers…


Countryside Stewardship – tips for 2019 scheme

Key elements of England's Countryside Stewardship opened for applications this week. Alice De Soer at the Central Association of Agricultural Valuers (CAAV) explains what’s new and gives tips on applying.…


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Results-based pilot scheme helps farmers deliver green goals

A pioneering scheme that gives farmers flexibility to create their own environmental plan tailored for their land is achieving fantastic results for local wildlife, say industry leaders. Defra published the…


Environmental Land Management scheme – what we know so far

Farmers in England will see Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) funding phased out and new agri-environment funding rolled in over a seven-year transition period under proposals outlined in the Agriculture Bill.…


How farming has changed since it was last outside the EU

It’s hard to predict what the future holds for the agricultural industry, as the clock ticks down to the UK leaving the European Union. Assuming that the UK does actually…


De-linked BPS payments: Everything we know so far

Farmers in England looking to unlock cash for major investments or retirement are likely to benefit from proposals in the forthcoming Agriculture Bill, which is currently making its way through…


Outlook 2019: Farm policy and support payments

The UK and the EU’s March 2019 Brexit transition deal or “implementation period” will last until the end of 2020 if we exit with a deal. During this time the…


Exclusive: Source reveals Defra farm payments fiasco

Farmers Weekly has been contacted about the frustration of processing Environmental Stewardship (ES) claims following a massive Rural Payments Agency (RPA) remapping exercise, which led to serious delays to farmers…


Gove's plans for farm support revolution examined

Farmers will have until 2024 to adjust to a new system of agricultural support after the UK leaves the European Union under plans outlined by Defra secretary Michael Gove. Speaking…


Are Gove’s environmental ambitions practical for farmers?

Farmers may feel the last thing they need is another piece of jargon. However, the phrase “natural capital” has very much arrived in Westminster and, with Defra secretary Michael Gove’s…


How an arable farmer benefited from planting apple trees

Planting trees can offer a range of benefits for farmers from protecting soils and crops, to improving livestock productivity and reducing flooding. Some farmers, however, are put off by the…


Pilot agri-environment scheme could mean less red tape

A new style of agri-environment scheme which promises producers less red tape and greater control over how they manage their land is being trialled by farmers in North Yorkshire, Norfolk…


Analysis: Should large farmers still get subsidies?

As momentum builds towards developing a new agricultural policy for the post-Brexit era, environmental  lobby group Greenpeace has launched a savage attack on farm subsidies. But do their claims stack…


The future of producer organisations post EU vote

The chancellor Phillip Hammond’s announcement last week that the government would guarantee agricultural funding until 2020 still leaves many questions unanswered for producer organisations (POs) and their members. UK POs…