Farmers and land managers in England’s Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONBs) and National Parks have been given grants, via the Farming in Protected Landscapes programme, to make improvements to the natural environment, cultural heritage and public access on their land – the next step in the government’s landmark plans for a renewed agriculture sector.
The new programme formally opened for applications on 1 July 2021. It has been developed by Defra with the support of a group of AONB and National Park staff from across the country, following its announcement as part of the Agricultural Transition Plan. The Tamar Valley AONB is now in a position to actively support applications for funding following Cornwall Council Cabinet approval, as the AONB’s accountable body.
The programme will provide funding for one-off projects which allow farmers and land managers in protected landscapes to:
- support nature recovery – such as increasing habitats to improve biodiversity or greater connectivity between habitats
- mitigate the impacts of climate change – such as reducing flood risk or storing more carbon
- provide opportunities for people to discover, enjoy and understand the landscape and its cultural heritage
- support nature-friendly and sustainable farm businesses.
Dan Cooke, Manager of Tamar Valley AONB, welcomes the announcement; “This is a real opportunity for farmers, land managers and their partner organisations, across the Tamar Valley AONB and beyond, to access some new significant funding and make positive and lasting change. We already have some local showcase examples of best practice and regenerative farming in the region, and we look forward to discussing ideas and applications to help Tamar Valley farms and farming communities get maximum benefit from this programme.”
The Tamar Valley AONB has £300,000 to award to farmers this year, with a further £410,000 for the next two years.
Projects could include creating ponds or other wetlands to support a variety of wildlife; conserving historic features on a farm, such as lime kilns or mining heritage; improving access; or even action to reduce carbon emissions or use of plastics on farms.
The Farming in Protected Landscapes programme is open to all farmers and land managers (including from the private, public and charity sector) in an AONB or National Park in England – or where activity on the ground can bring benefit to one or more of those areas. It is a programme of funding for one-off projects rather than an agri-environment scheme.
If you farm or manage land within the Tamar Valley AONB, please click here for further details.
Image: Soil sampling above St Germans, courtesy of A Bebbington