APPLICATIONS are now open for the Countryside Productivity (CPS) Small Grant Scheme, but would-be applicants only have until midday on March 14, 2018 to apply.

Forming part of the Rural Development Programme for England (RDPE), the Small Grant Scheme differs from other CPS funding due to its focus on supporting investment into specific agricultural equipment explained Jack Harley, graduate surveyor with Greenslade Taylor Hunt.

He said: “The funding is only available to farmers with livestock, dairy, arable and/or horticultural enterprises, who are looking to improve animal welfare, resource efficiency or nutrient management.

“Applications can be made online for between £3,000 and £12,000, which can cover up to 40% of eligible costs. For those in Cornwall, applications can be made for grants to cover up to 50% of eligible costs.”

There is an extensive list of items that are considered eligible for funding (including crushes, foot trimming equipment, EID readers, direct drills and GPS equipment to name a few), all of which DEFRA have given a ‘standard cost’. This removes the need to gather quotes for the items prior to applying for the funding; which is necessary for other RDPE grant schemes. Unfortunately, second-hand items are not considered eligible, but with the help of the Small Grant Scheme, new items can become more affordable.

As with other RDPE schemes, the Government has guaranteed funding for Small Grant Scheme agreements, provided they are agreed before the UK leaves the EU (even if the agreements continue beyond that date).

Should you wish to discuss whether the Small Grant Scheme could be of benefit to you, or to find out more about other grant schemes currently available, please contact GTH Professional Services. Simply search to find your nearest office.