Muker barns Muker barns in the hay meadows

Agri-environment Schemes

How we can help

We offer a first stop service for farmers and landowners on both the old and the new agri-environment schemes. We work closely with Natural England who advise on the Government’s agri-environment schemes. The most up to date information on the schemes, including how to apply and scheme manuals, can be found on their website. Supporting farmers and landowners to continue to deliver a range of public benefits through national agri-environment scheme agreements is one of the objectives agreed by the Authority and a wide range of local partner organisations in the National Park Management Plan 2019-24.

We can help with…

  • Free advice visits to explain the range of national and regional grants available and how to apply for them.
  • Help with all aspects of the Countryside Stewardship Scheme application process and the different levels of the Scheme. There may be a charge associated with some of this work but please contact us to find out how we can help.
  • If you are interested in applying for a Water Capital Grant you will need to have your application endorsed by the Catchment Sensitive Farming Officer (CSFO) and inside the National Park Boundary we are the acting CSFOs. Please contact us.
  • We can also help people who are having difficulty with accessing any of the information.

Countryside Stewardship

Countryside Stewardship has two tiers; Mid Tier and Higher Tier. Unlike Environmental Stewardship, Countryside Stewardship is parcel based and not whole-farm. Applications are competitive and will be scored against others nationally.

Application windows:

  • Applications for Higher Tier opened on 11 February 2020 and close on 1 May 2020.
  • Applications for Mid Tier opened on 11 February 2020 and close on 31 July 2020. Note a paper application pack must be requested by 31 May and an online application pack must be requested by 30 June.

Countryside Stewardship also has Hedgerow and Boundaries grants and the Water Capital Items. These can be incorporated into the Mid or Higher Tier agreements or can be a stand alone capital grant.

Hedgerow and Boundaries Grant

Hedgerows and boundaries grant opened for applications on 11 February 2020 and will close on 1 May 2020. Please contact the Farm team if you would like any help or advice with these applications. Contact details below.

Water Capital Grant

The Water Capital Grant application window is now open for 2020. The dates are the same as the Mid Tier window – it is open for applications from the 11 February 2020 and closes on 31 July 2020. Note a paper application pack must be requested by 31 May and online application pack by 30 June.

If you are considering applying for grants for management of priority water catchments the last date to request a visit for Catchment Sensitive Farming officer approval is 31 May.

Farmers that currently have an ELS or HLS agreement are not able to apply to the new scheme until their existing agreement expires, with the exception of:

  • the Water Capital Grant Scheme if they are in a priority area for Water Quality. The priority areas can now be seen on Magic.
  • Hedgerows and Boundaries – you can apply if you are in ELS. Unfortunately you cannot apply if you are currently in HLS or UELS.

Please contact us by: