Fund title: Countryside Stewardship 2021

Focus of fund/fund aims:

Farmers and land managers can now apply for new Countryside Stewardship agreements that will commence on 1 January 2021 under UK domestic legislation.

Application deadline:

Refer to website for deadlines

Fund description:

Applications can now be made for new Countryside Stewardship (CS) agreements for 2021. Farmers and land managers who sign up for CS agreements receive funding in exchange for managing and investing in their land in a way which promotes environmental benefit.

The UK government will continue to offer Countryside Stewardship agreements in 2021, 2022 and 2023. Countryside Stewardship will eventually be replaced with the new Environmental Land Management (ELM) scheme. This will follow trialling and testing and a national pilot involving farmers and land managers. The full ELM scheme will be in place from 2024.

Applications can now be made for:

  • Mid Tier – farmers and land managers can choose from all available multi-year options and capital items to form an agreement which delivers local environmental benefits.
  • Higher Tier – for applicants managing more complex land in environmentally significant sites, commons or woodlands which requires support from Natural England or the Forestry Commission.
  • Wildlife Offers – a simplified set of “off-the-shelf” management options to help farmers to improve wildlife on their land. There are four packages to choose from: arable; lowland grazing; upland; and mixed farming.
  • Hedgerows and Boundaries – for the restoration of existing farm boundaries and hedgerows
    Woodland support – for woodland creation, management plan and tree health grants

Those signed up to CS who secure a place in the ELM pilot from 2021, or wish to enter the scheme when it is fully rolled out from 2024, will be able to leave their agreements at agreed exit points, without penalty.

Further information:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/countryside-stewardship-get-paid-for-environmental-land-management