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£120 million rural growth programme extended

£120 million rural growth programme extended

The government has published details of how another round of grant funding, designed to help projects that will create jobs and generate money for rural areas, will work. The scheme – known as the Rural Development Programme for England (RDPE) - will focus on three key areas; business development, food processing and rural tourism infrastructure. Up to £120 million is believed to have been earmarked for the programme.

Applications for the grant will be in two stages, with the first designed to scope out whether or not the project will be suitable in principle. The second will look at the proposal in detail and identify the benefits the grant money will bring to the wider community.

The window for the submission of Expression of Interest forms is open from now until 31st January 2018. According to Stags Rural Chartered Surveyor Lydia Cox, it is worthwhile investigating the potential for a scheme, no matter how embryonic the concept may be. ‘The RDPE is looking to support high quality, high impact investments and is encouraging small rural businesses to grasp this opportunity to think big. I would encourage everyone with an interest in the rural economy to consider if they would like to participate’.

If you have an idea that may be suitable, or would simply like to chat through an idea, please do not hesitate to contact Lydia on 01884 235701, email or visit