BN4: Earth bank restoration

Find out about eligibility and requirements for the earth bank restoration item.

How much will be paid

£7 per metre (m).

Where to use this item

Available for Mid Tier, Higher Tier and hedgerows and boundaries grant

Only on lengths of earth bank that need to be rebuilt to their original height.

How this item will benefit the environment

If successful there will be a length of rebuilt earth bank which will conserve and enhance landscape character and provide a valuable wildlife habitat.


  • restore the bank to reflect the style and profile of other banks in a good condition nearby
  • rebuild the bank using original soil that has slipped from it
  • build up moist soil in consolidated layers, allowing it to settle at each stage to ensure stability
  • use subsoil and small stones for the lower layers and topsoil with no stones for the upper layers
  • build each face of the bank so that it slopes inwards (approximately 0.3m for every 1m in height), to create a ‘batter’ (slope)
  • make the base of the bank wider than the top by roughly 45cm to 60cm on each side
  • take turves up to the full height of the new bank in areas where existing banks are faced with turves
  • finish off the top with loose soil or turf (unless a hedge is being planted)
  • make sure the top line of the bank is level with the ground
  • finish the ends of the bank at gateways with turfing or stone facing, and protect it from being damaged by livestock and machinery
  • make sure that no healthy mature trees are disturbed
  • restore any stiles and gates to their original construction
  • remove any surplus earth-fill and stones from the site after the work has been completed and restore the ground around it

Do not:

  • block or restrict access to open access land
  • carry out work between 1 March and 31 August if the bank is topped by a hedge
  • remove soil from other banks, even if they are derelict
  • damage the roots of trees growing on the bank with machinery

Keeping records

Agreement holders will need to keep the following records and supply them on request:

  • any consents or permissions connected with the work
  • receipted invoices, or bank statements where a receipted invoice is unavailable
  • please see the record keeping and inspection requirements as set out in the Mid Tier manual for more detail

Agreement holders will need to keep the following records and supply them with the claim:

  • photographs during and after work has been completed

Applicants will have to send the following with their application:

  • photographs of each length of earth bank entered into the item

Further information

See the Mid Tier manual or Higher Tier manual or hedgerows and boundaries grant manual to find out more about the scheme and how to apply.

Published 2 April 2015
Last updated 10 March 2017 + show all updates
  1. Updated for 2017 applications.
  2. Information updated for applications in 2016.
  3. First published.