More Money for Countryside Stewardship

Payment rates for Countryside Stewardship in England have been increased by 30% on average in a bid to attract more farmers in preparation for the agricultural transition to new post-Brexit green schemes. Rural Surveyor George Whittaker explains how this will be implemented.

More Money for Countryside Stewardship

Defra Secretary George Eustice made the announcement during his recent speech to the virtual Oxford Farming Conference. “It’s the first step really of moving away from an income foregone approach towards something that is more generous, more market-based,” Mr Eustice told reporters.

It is suggested that farmers should consider Countryside Stewardship “as a bridge to Local Nature Recovery” – one of three new agri-environment schemes that makes up part of the wider Environmental Land Management (ELM) Scheme.

The payment rate increases apply to both new and existing agreements. Some examples (£/ha)-

  • GS2 - Permanent grassland with very low inputs (outside SDAs) from £95 to £132
  • AB1 - nectar flower mix have increased from £511 to £579
  • AB6 - enhanced overwintered stubble from £436 to £493
  • AB8 - flower-rich margins and plots from £539 to £628
  • AB12 - supplementary winter feeding for farmland birds from £632 to £657
  • OR1 - organic conversion - Improved Permanent Grassland from £75 to £150
  • OT3 - organic land management - rotational land from £65 to £109

If you have a revenue agreement, or an application for a revenue agreement starting on or before 1 January 2022 then where the new rate has:

  • Increased > the new (higher) rate will be paid
  • Decreased > the existing (higher) rate shown on the signed agreement will be paid
  • Not changed > the existing rate shown on the signed agreement will be paid

For new agreements starting from 1 January 2023 all of the new revenue rates will apply.

If you have any questions or wish to discuss any of the above, please contact George Whittaker  on 01305 236578 or a member of our Rural Grants team in your nearest office.  

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