Know How / Environmental schemes

Each of the UK’s devolved administrations has its own agri-environment scheme – for example, the Countryside Stewardship Scheme in England and the Agri-environment Climate Scheme in Scotland.

Find out what’s involved in signing up to a ‘green scheme’ and get practical tips on putting together your application.

Advice and tips


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.…


Tips on applying for Mid-Tier Countryside Stewardship

With only three weeks until the Countryside Stewardship Mid-Tier 2018 application deadline, Alice De Soer from the Central Association of Agricultural Valuers (CAAV) gives some key pointers for applicants. The…


Advice on hedges for BPS and Countryside Stewardship 2018

The new mapped hedges information isn’t always correct. Alice De Soer from the Central Association of Agricultural Valuers advises on dealing with hedges for the Basic Payment Scheme and Countryside…

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Case studies


How a salt marsh helped save Cumbrian estate

Giles Mounsey-Heysham credits the salt marsh for saving Castletown Estate, his family’s 1,862ha property at Rockcliffe in Cumbria. He began running the estate with its huge debts 50 years ago…


Stewardship scheme could help in blackgrass battle

Mike Neaverson recently joined his family’s 250ha farming business in south Lincolnshire having spent the past five years working in farm management. Here, he describes how the farm, which currently…


Glos farmer creates wild margins to attract grey partridges

Applying for environmental schemes can be time-consuming and have no guarantee of success, but if approved they can be financially worthwhile, as one Gloucestershire farmer is discovering. George Ponsonby is…


Wild bird project – a blueprint for future farm support?

Farmers in the South West have helped to save a rare farmland bird in a 25-year collaboration with the RSPB.  Farmers and the RSPB don’t always see eye to eye,…

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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…


Farmers ahead of the game on conservation

“Farmers are the original friends of the Earth; they know that we cannot have a healthy economy, healthy society or healthy individuals unless we have a healthy environment.” So begins…


Environmental schemes must be profitable, says CLA

All the money currently spent on the Common Agricultural Policy in England – and possibly more – should be transferred to a new “public money for public goods” scheme in…

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Tenant farmers under pressure as payments fail to arrive

Tenant farmers in England are losing confidence in agri-environment schemes due to the “shambolic” administration by Natural England and the Rural Payments Agency (RPA). Some 14,000 historic Environmental Stewardship payments…


Future payment fears slow Countryside Stewardship uptake

Many farmers and landowners are reluctant to commit to Countryside Stewardship (CS) this year because they fear it may restrict their access to rewards for the public good that future…


£1m Scots fund opens for large-scale biodiversity projects

Scottish Natural Heritage is offering funds for ambitious and innovative ideas to improve habits, safeguard species and encourage increased access to nature. The first year of the Biodiversity Challenge Fund…


CSS application window opens with simpler process promised

The 2019 Countryside Stewardship (CS) Scheme is open for applications in England, with the government claiming to have taken further steps to make the scheme less bureaucratic. Improvements for 2019…

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