Farming Minister George Eustice has urged farmers wanting support to restore farmland damaged by December’s storms to get their applications in as soon as possible before the 1 April deadline in order to access vital funds sooner.
All farmers in Cumbria, Lancashire, Yorkshire, Durham or Northumberland who have suffered losses as a result of flooding caused by Storm Desmond or Storm Eva are eligible to apply for support grants of up to £20,000.
Farmers suffering from uninsurable losses can apply for Farming Recovery Fund grants via the Rural Payments Agency (RPA) to help restore farmland, rebuild tracks and repair drains and reinstate boundaries.
Farming Minister George Eustice said:
These payments are part of a wider £200 million package of government support set up to help communities affected by the devastating floods in Northern England. The grants could make a real difference to farm businesses trying to get back on their feet.
So far 107 applications worth over £1.1 million have been submitted to the RPA and the agency has been acting swiftly and doing a great job approving applications within 10 working days.
But I want every eligible flood-affected farmer to be able to access this vital money as soon as possible to help them get back to normal. Help is at hand via the Rural Services Helpline and farmers wanting support to apply should call 03000 200 301.
Once all checks are completed, the RPA can approve an application and farmers can claim. Payments against valid claims will be paid directly into bank accounts within 5 working days.
This fund covers a range of restoration and repair works including:
- the restoration of productive stock proof grassland
- the restoration of productive arable and horticultural land
- the restoration of field access or track ways, fencing or gates or water troughs
- the restoration of drainage on flood-damaged holdings
- damage to agricultural machinery that cannot be insured
- damage to agricultural buildings that cannot be insured