Basic Payment Scheme (BPS)

All the information you need to know about the main rural payment for farmers

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Basic Payment recipients can get free advice from organisations during the changes in farming, supported by the Farming Resilience Fund.

What is the Basic Payment Scheme (BPS)?

The Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) is the biggest of the rural grants and payments that provide help to the farming industry. Farmers apply once a year - between March and May - and payments begin in December.

Read this collection to find out more about the scheme.

Who’s it for?

Farmers with at least 5 hectares of agricultural land and 5 ‘entitlements’ can apply. Some businesses are not allowed to claim if they carry out certain business activities.

What do I need to do?

There are some rules about what you can and cannot do with your land if you claim BPS.

If you’re an arable farmer you might need to grow 3 different crops and use 5% of your land to do specific things that are good for the environment. Farmers will need to make decisions about what to do with their land so that they can follow the rules.

If you claim BPS you must also follow the cross compliance rules.

How do I apply?

When the scheme is open go to Make or update a rural payments claim to sign in and start.

BPS 2022

BPS 2021

BPS 2020

BPS 2019

BPS 2018

Basic Payment Scheme 2018 - changes to greening requirements

BPS 2017

Everything rural businesses need to know about BPS in 2017.

BPS 2016

Guidance and information about the Basic Payment Scheme 2016 scheme year.

BPS 2015

Guidance and information about the Basic Payment Scheme 2015 scheme year.

Published 24 February 2015
Last updated 26 July 2022 + show all updates
  1. Added a link to Defra information: Get free business advice for your farm.

  2. Changes to the opening times of the RPA helpline.

  3. Remove notice about weekend opening ahead of 16 May application deadline.

  4. Information about weekend helpline opening times.

  5. Link to BPS 2022 added.

  6. Addition of BPS 2021 homepage

  7. Add link to BPS 2020 page.

  8. Removal of EU Exit text.

  9. Updated text to show that UK has left the European Union.

  10. Addition of BPS 2020 page.

  11. Added link to BPS 2019 page

  12. Updated to confirm BPS 2015 application is now closed

  13. Updated to remove information about late applications - as the claim window has now closed.

  14. Updated to remind readers of late application penalties for BPS.

  15. This collection now includes the May 2015 update.

  16. Added link to The Basic Payment Scheme in England: May 2015 guidance update (ver 1 May 2015)

  17. Updated with a list of all the latest guidance for BPS.

  18. Added certification form to prove 'new' or 'young' farmer status to the collection.

  19. New section with links to 'Telling us about your land' blog added to the page.

  20. First published.