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New Capital Grant Schemes Open

Two new capital grant schemes for farmers and rural landowners are now open under the Rural Development Programme for England, writes Jenny Towill of Stags Professional Services.

The new schemes offer capital grant funding for rural businesses to provide education and training, renewable energy projects, tourism facilities and business startup and expansion.

“£177m of funding is available under the Growth Programme with grants normally between £35,000 and £145,000 each” says Jenny.

“The Programme is administered regionally and each area has different project criteria. The scheme is aimed at supporting the rural economy and projects which can demonstrate business growth and job creation will be favoured” advises Jenny. 

“LEADER funding is also available for small businesses, to support rural tourism, farm and forestry productivity, cultural and heritage projects and the provision of other rural services. This scheme typically offers smaller grants from £2,500 upwards” advises Jenny.

“The grants will usually fund 40% of the eligible costs of a project, which can include new buildings, equipment and infrastructure. It is important to have any necessary planning consents in place, together with a business plan and budgets. Applicants must also have means of funding their proposal, as grants will not be paid until the project is completed” says Jenny.

“Examples of the projects funded under previous RDPE schemes in the south west include an expanding micro brewery, a start up woollen yarn producer and vanilla pod processing business, and a solar panel manufacturer.”

“Grants are potentially lucrative and those considering capital investment in their business in the near future are strongly encouraged to find out whether there is grant funding are available for their specific project” advises Jenny. 

For more information on the new RDPE schemes, or assistance with preparing an application, please contact Jenny Towill at Stags on 01823 653429 or email