During the final few months of 2019, the UK experienced extreme levels of rainfall, which has had a devastating impact on the rural sector and we know first hand that many of our clients’ businesses have been severely affected. Normal farming activities have been delayed and there is no ‘quick fix’ to get back on track.
However, rural businesses should not feel as though there is no support. The Farming Recovery Fund is available to provide assistance to farmers either in receipt of BPS or who own/tenant at least 5ha of farmland and whose agricultural land has been damaged by specific instances of flooding. These are instances which have been declared a natural disaster by the Government.
The grant level ranges from a minimum of £500 to a maximum of £25,000 and provides financial assistance to cover non-insurable items. It also includes activities such as re-cultivation, reseeding, reinstating field boundaries and removing debris from agricultural land. Essentially, the purpose of the grant is to restore the agricultural land to the state it was in prior to the flooding – no funding will be granted for non-agricultural purposes.
If you believe you are eligible to apply for a grant, you must include as much supporting evidence as you can with your application. This should include photographs of the damage suffered by your business and sufficient mapping to demonstrate the affected areas. Please bear in mind that DEFRA have satellite footage if you are unsure if you qualify. You will also need to include details of the costs you are claiming for.
The fund currently applies to farms in Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire and Lincolnshire affected by flooding on 7 and 8 November 2019. The closing date for applications relating to these locations is 31 July 2020 at 5.00pm.
To read more about the conditions for eligibility and what you can apply for, visit https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/farming-recovery-fund-2019-guidance-and-application-form.