2015-12-11   facebook twitter rss

Grant Support Available for Flood Hit Farmers

The Department of Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA) have announced their intention to support some of Cumbria & Lancashire's most affected farmers.

Commenting on the announcement, Mark Barrow, Chartered Surveyor at H&H Land and Property says:
“H&H Land and Property understand the damage and disruption that flood water can cause to any farming business. In light of the recent flooding across the north west of England, it was announced on Wednesday 9th December that Defra has launched ‘The Farming Recovery Fund,’ which will allow flood-hit farmers to claim up to £20,000 to help restore damaged agricultural land. The fund, which will be opened to farmers in Cumbria and Lancashire aims to cover farmers’ short-term uninsured recovery costs.”

Flood

The four key areas which are covered by the support funding include:

  • Restoring productive grassland

  • Recovering productive arable and horticultural land

  • Restoring farm vehicle access

  • Repairing agricultural drainage

Application forms will be available from Friday 18th December, and H&H Land and Property Ltd will be happy to assist individuals with their claims. In the meantime the advice for all of those affected is to keep good records of the damage, specifically digital photographs.

Mark goes on to say:
“For anyone wishing to make such a claim, it is imperative that works are not started until grant confirmation has been received. We are told monies will not be released for own labour costs or additional fuel costs.”

Natural England to relax Stewardship Requirements in the wake of the floods

The recent floods have caused widespread devastation across large swathes of Cumbrian farmland. It has just been announced that Natural England are temporarily lifting requirements that would normally apply to farms being managed under an Environmental Stewardship (ES) agreement and to protected sites, such as Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs).

David Morley, Environmental Advisor for H&H Land and Property, explains:
“This means farmers can get on with whatever work is needed to ameliorate flood damage without worrying about breaching their ES agreement or falling foul of SSSI legislation.”

Farmers who believe they cannot fulfil the requirements of their ES agreement or SSSI obligations as a result of the floods should contact Natural England as soon as they can safely assess the impact. In some cases, farmers may need to complete a Derogation Notice to formalise a temporary change in the agreed management.

Farmers who have applied for Countryside Stewardship agreements this year may need to provide photographic records or other additional information to support their application by 15th December.

David continues:
“If farmers believe they may have difficulty in providing this information as a consequence of the floods, they should contact Natural England as soon as possible. There is no guarantee the agreement can be processed without the supporting information, but Natural England are offering to be as flexible as possible within the constraints of the Scheme.”

HH Land

  Related Links
link Call to Support Struggling Hill Farmers
link Battery Storage - Next Big Thing in Renewable Energy
link 200 Million New Trees by 2020 to Stop Floods
link Sustaining Scotland’s Moorland