Natural England
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Last call for farmers to tap into Catchment Sensitive Farming's 2012 capital grants scheme

Farmers and growers are being reminded that applications for funding from this year’s Catchment Sensitive Farming Capital Grants Scheme should be returned by 30th April 2012.

From the River Aln in Northumberland to the River Exe in Devon and from the Arun to the Wye, farmers in 75 catchment areas of England may be applicable for grants of up to £10,000 from the Catchment Sensitive Farming initiative's Capital Grants Scheme.  Farm improvement works can be funded with up to 50% grant aid from the scheme and more than 40 types of project are eligible for funding.

The grants, which are administered by Natural England, are available to farmers and land managers in the CSF scheme’s target areas: (3.94mb).

Grants are available for carrying out works on the farm that will help boost the health of England’s precious rivers, streams, meres and mosses by improving water quality and reducing pollution from agricultural activity.

Full details are available on the Catchment Sensitive Farming section of Natural England's website.  The deadline for completed applications to be returned is Monday 30th April

Andy Foot, who farms in the Dorset Stour, said: “I would encourage all farmers to get involved with the project as it is there to help.  The grant can give you the kick start you need and the specialist training and advice that’s also on offer through CSF has been invaluable and doesn’t cost you anything.”

A network of Catchment Sensitive Farming project officers provide practical training, advice and grants to help farmers and land managers to take voluntary action to protect water bodies and the natural environment.

About Catchment Sensitive Farming

  • The Catchment Sensitive Farming Project is a joint project between the Environment Agency and Natural England, funded by Defra and the Rural Development Programme for England, working in priority catchments within England.

  • The project is proving successful in reducing diffuse water pollution from agriculture and is important in helping to meet the Water Framework Directive standards.Catchment Sensitive Farming was introduced by Defra in 40 priority catchments in April 2006 to raise awareness and encourage early voluntary action by farmers and land managers to tackle diffuse water pollution from agricultural sources.

  • The project is part of the national response to meet the requirements of the EU Water Framework Directive and contributes towards achieving Natura 2000 objectives..

  • If the Capital Grants Scheme is oversubscribed, grants will be allocated to those applications which best meet the scheme’s priorities, are within target areas and will deliver the greatest environmental benefit.

About Natural England
Natural England is the government’s advisor on the natural environment. Established in 2006 our work is focused on enhancing England’s wildlife and landscapes and maximising the benefits they bring to the public.

  • We establish and care for England’s main wildlife and geological sites, ensuring that over 4,000 National Nature Reserves and Sites of Special Scientific Interest are looked after and improved.

  • We work to ensure that England’s landscapes are effectively protected, designating England’s National Parks, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and advising on their conservation

  • We run England’s Environmental Stewardship green farming schemes that deliver over £400 million a year to farmers and landowners, enabling them to enhance the natural environment across two thirds of England’s farmland.

  • We fund, manage, and provide scientific expertise for hundreds of conservation projects each year, improving the prospects for thousands of England’s species and habitats.

  • We promote access to the wider countryside, helping establish National Trails and coastal trails and ensuring that the public can enjoy and benefit from them.

For further information, please contact:
David Hirst, Natural England press office:
david.hirst@naturalengland.org.uk

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