HHLE PROPERTY MATTERS SPRING 2021 - Flipbook - Page 19
Head of Conservation & Environment
M: 07834 658953
Schemes for 2021
Launched on 9th February for the upcoming scheme year, The Countryside Stewardship
Scheme has undergone a number of significant changes for 2021. On Page 8, Jonathan Hird has
outlined the changes to the Capital Grant offerings. In addition, however, there have also been
some developments in Mid Tier and Higher Tier.
Mid Tier is aimed at delivering environmental gains at
a landscape scale across the wider countryside through
5-year agreements. It is intended to be a competitive
scheme, although low take up has meant that, to date,
virtually all applicants have been offered an agreement.
Applications can include any of the two year Capital
Grants referred to on page 8. However, for the first time
in 2021, the RPA are introducing a cap on these items:
£50k for hedgerows and boundaries and £120k for each
of the Water Capital and Air Quality Grants.
Other changes for 2021 include:
•Educational access payments available for the first
time in Mid Tier
•Expanded eligibility criteria for option UP2 “Rough
Grazing for Birds”
•Wood-pasture Maintenance is now available in
the uplands at £212 per ha; the land must be
recorded as being wood-pasture on MAGIC, the
Government’s online interactive mapping resource
The four “simplified” Mid Tier Stewardship Offers for
arable farms, lowland livestock farms, upland farms and
mixed farms continue. These Offers group together
options that are likely to be suitable on each farmtype. The Mid Tier offers are not subject to competitive
scoring – applicants are guaranteed an agreement.
Capital items cannot be included in the Simplified
Offers, but farmers applying for them can now, for the
first time, also apply separately for any of the Capital
The Mid Tier application window runs until 30th July
2021, but paper application packs must be ordered by
31st May or downloaded online by 30th June.
If CSFO endorsement is needed, all the necessary
evidence must be provided to them by 31st May.
With the plethora of options and capital items
available within Mid Tier, it is rarely straightforward for
farmers to decide which is the best way to go, making it
essential that they seek professional advice. H&H Land &
Estates have submitted over 200 successful Countryside
Stewardship applications in the last six years.
Higher Tier is targeted at land that can deliver
significant conservation gains. It is aimed mainly at farms
coming out of Higher Level Environmental Stewardship
(HLS) agreements and farms with SSSIs, moorland or
other high priority habitats.
The main change this year is that the wood-pasture
options that were withdrawn from the uplands last year
(because they were not considered cost-effective) have
been re-introduced with new payment rates. Ironically,
for WD4 and WD5, these rates are higher than their
•WD4 Maintenance of wood-pasture £212 per ha
(also available in Mid Tier)
• WD5 Restoration of wood-pasture £316 per ha
• WD6 Creation of wood-pasture £333 per ha
For those interested in Higher Tier, an “Initial
Application” needs to be submitted by 30th April 2021.
Application packs must be ordered by 31st March, so
farmers need to take action quickly if they want to apply
for Higher Tier. If you are not already in discussion with
Natural England, the chances are your application will
not be supported in this Scheme year.