Farmers urged to act as new Countryside Stewardship offers open

Farmers discouraged by complex rules from seeking payments for delivering environmental enhancements on their land are being urged to apply under a simplified scheme.

Applications are now open for farmers to take up the Government's new Countryside Stewardship offers.
Applications are now open for farmers to take up the Government's new Countryside Stewardship offers.

The Government’s newly restructured Countryside Stewardship offers are now open for applications, with farmers able to deliver as few as three options.

Four different offers comprise of options for arable, lowland grazing, mixed and upland farms. Each offer comprises of measures to boost pollinators, provide food for birds and improve habitats.

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Farming Minister George Eustice said: “My message to farmers who’ve been put off Countryside Stewardship in the last few rounds is to take another look and see what’s on offer this year.

“We’ve listened to farmers and we’ve simplified the offering to create a universal scheme to appeal to farmers new to stewardship and those coming out of ELS (Entry Level Stewardship) so they can continue the good work on their farms.”

Paper application packs are available until May 31 and online applications will be open from February 20.