As with many grants that have been available for the last few years, with Brexit soon to be upon us, certain grants have now finished, with the rest due to finish once we finally leave Europe. The recent RDPE Growth Programme grants finished at the end of May, which saw good opportunities for those with rural business looking to get funding under the headings of Tourism, Food Processing and Business Development. The Tourism grant had a good uptake, particularly appealing to farming businesses wishing to diversify and make use of redundant farm buildings. However, the RDPE Countryside Productivity grant that is still open:
– Improving Farm Productivity – deadline 3rd December 2018
The recent RDPE Countryside Productivity Small Grant scheme closed in March with a huge uptake of applicants. Defra granted 3,500 grants with a total of around £23.5 million awarded. This grant offered farming businesses funding towards equipment to help improve productivity, health & welfare and increase yields. Farmers have now received confirmation of whether they have been awarded the grant. However, problems have now arisen, causing Defra to release a statement recently changing the rules. As part of the grant stipulations, the farmer has 150 days to purchase the item, install it and make a claim. However, due to demand, there has been huge difficulty in the acquisition of certain items, leading to delivery dates being outside the 150 claim period. Defra has now confirmed that for the following items, as long as it is purchased within the 150 days, delivery can be accepted after this deadline.
– Fixed and mobile cattle handling system
– Squeeze crush
– Fixed and mobile sheep handling system
Once the item has been delivered, farmers are required to notify RDPE of delivery in order to receive grant payment.
The good news for those that missed out, Defra have also announced that this grant will reopen for a second round in the autumn (date to be announced), which will give those who were unsuccessful or who withdrew their application, another opportunity for funding.
For further information, please contact your local FCG office or Prue at firstname.lastname@example.org