Collection

Countryside Stewardship

Countryside Stewardship (CS) provides financial incentives for farmers, woodland owners, foresters and land managers to look after and improve the environment.

Countryside Stewardship revenue claims are open

The deadline for submitting your annual revenue claim without penalty was midnight on 16 May 2022. You can continue to submit claims after 16 May until midnight on 10 June but penalties or reductions will be applied.

Read more information about how to make a revenue claim.

Countryside Stewardship applications are open

You can apply for:

  • Mid Tier

  • Wildlife Offers

  • Higher Tier

  • Capital grants

  • Protection and Infrastructure

  • Woodland support grants

Rural Payments service

You can use the Rural Payments service to update land use until 10 June 2022.

You can also add land by email.

About the scheme

The aim of the scheme is to look after and improve the environment by:

  • conserving and restoring wildlife habitats

  • flood risk management

  • woodland creation and management

  • reducing widespread water pollution from agriculture

  • keeping the character of the countryside

  • preserving historical features in the landscape

  • encouraging educational access

The main elements to the scheme are:

  • Mid Tier

  • Wildlife Offers

  • Higher Tier

  • Capital grants

  • Protection and Infrastructure

  • Woodland support grants

Contact

Contact the Rural Payments Agency (RPA) if you have any queries, including woodland options and grants:

Rural Payments Agency

(Countryside Stewardship)
PO Box 324
Worksop
S95 1DF

Email ruralpayments@defra.gov.uk

Tel: 03000 200 301

Opening times: 8:30am to 5pm, Monday to Friday (excluding public holidays)

Find out about call charges at www.gov.uk/call-charges

How to apply for a Countryside Stewardship (CS) agreement

The scheme is:

  • open to all eligible farmers, woodland owners, foresters and other land managers

  • suitable for many types of land use, for example conventional and organic farmland, coastal areas, uplands and woodlands

  • scored against local priority targets for the competitive elements of the scheme, to maximise environmental benefit

How to claim for payment on an existing Countryside Stewardship agreement

All the information you need to know about making a claim for payment is in the relevant scheme manual.

Information for agreement holders

The agreement holders’ information provides the manual relevant to your scheme and agreement start date. The information you need to know about your agreement is in the relevant scheme manual.

Countryside Stewardship forms

The Countryside Stewardship forms available to apply for or support a Countryside Stewardship agreement.

Published 11 February 2020
Last updated 17 May 2022 + show all updates
  1. Removal of information about transferring land and BPS entitlements as the deadline has passed.

  2. Information added about RPA helpline weekend opening times.

  3. Text updated to show revenue claims opening in March 2022.

  4. Updated with changes for scheme opening on 8 Feb - including adding in Protection and Infrastructure to list of main elements of scheme

  5. Information added about transferring land and BPS entitlements using the Rural Payments service, and adding land by email.

  6. Collection page updated to reflect applications for Countryside Stewardship Mid Tier and Wildlife Offers are closed.

  7. Updated page to reflect that the CS Mid Tier request an application pack online deadline has been extended to 16 July.

  8. Edited latest news to confirm deadline for submitting revenue claims has passed. Removed out of date information.

  9. Higher Tier and Capital Grants applications have now closed and have been removed from the list of open applications.

  10. Easter opening times for RPA helplines

  11. Latest news updated with claims opening.

  12. From 9 February, update land use using the Rural Payments service.

  13. Latest News updated to show CS applications are now open

  14. Published information about transferring land and BPS entitlements, and adding land by email.

  15. Latest news - updated to advise the updated Woodland Creation and Maintenance grant opens on 9 February 2021.

  16. Latest news – removed information for change land tenure form, reference to revenue claim extension and removed function not available after 10 July under 'What you can do in Rural Payments'.

  17. Latest news updated with information about woodland support grants moving to domestic funding on 15 July.

  18. Remove 'Transfer land parcels' from Rural Payments service.

  19. The latest news box has been updated to tell you not to email us a link to an external shared drive facility (for example Dropbox or Google Drive). We cannot accept supporting documents and evidence sent in this way.

  20. Latest news - Rural payments service updated: deadline to update land use extended to 10 July; removal of transfer BPS entitlements as deadline was 15 May.

  21. Deadline for transferring land parcels amended to 15 June.

  22. Link added to news article regarding the 'Extra month to claim for farm payments'

  23. Link to the Coronavirus (COVID-19): information for farmers, landowners and rural businesses page added to latest news.

  24. Change land tenure form added.

  25. Rural Payments service downtime affecting CS revenue claims until 6 April. From 6 April you can use the Rural Payments service to view land parcel map and information for a date in the past.

  26. Update to 'add land by email' date to 30 June, for Countryside Stewardship.

  27. Page updated to advise customers they can submit a CS revenue claim using the Rural Payments service.

  28. Update to Latest news section to include 'Update land' using the Rural Payments service.

  29. First published.