Taken from DEFRA website © Crown Copyright – DEFRA
The Rural Development Programme for England (RDPE) aims to improve competitiveness in the agriculture and forestry sector; safeguard and enhance the rural environment; foster competitive and sustainable rural businesses and thriving rural communities.
What do you want to do?
- Learn what RDPE is, how it is managed and delivered
- Apply for funding – learn about the grants available and how to apply for them on the RDPE Network pages
- Latest news across the Programme
- What’s on? – Find out about what events and activities are going on and how you can get involved.
Government consults on delivery of EU funds
The Government has recently launched a consultation on how the next round of EU structural funds, rural development and maritime and fisheries can work together to support sustainable, environmental, social and economic restructuring. The current funding period will close at the end of 2013 and the next period will begin in 2014, subject to completion of negotiations.
- Read the press release
We encourage all interested in the future delivery of these funds to respond to this consultation. Please note that this consultation will close on 27 April 2012.
- See the consultation
Defra takes the lead on RDPE delivery
Since taking over responsibility for the delivery of the RDPE socio-economic elements, through the newly established RDPE delivery teams, Defra is providing a stronger lead on the priorities for delivery. In particular, Defra has refocused remaining socio-economic resources (circa £100 million) of RDPE at meeting the priorities of the Rural Economic Growth Review.
Following the launch of the Rural Economic Growth Review (29th November 2011), the following grant schemes are or will be available.
The £60 million Rural Economy Grant (REG) scheme provides large grants of between £25,000 and circa £1 million (no set upper limit) to enable a significant ‘game-changing’, transformational performance in farm, forestry, tourism, agri-food businesses and micro businesses in rural areas in England. Project applications will need to demonstrate that as a result of a grant their business will achieve a significant step change in performance (such as job creation, increased turnover, access to new markets etc).
TO BE LAUNCHED, with information available in due course:
The dates of the next application rounds for both the Farm and Forestry Improvement Scheme (small grants of between £2,500 and £25,000), and the Rural Community Broadband Fund (grants to establish Superfast Broadband in hard to reach locations) are due to be announced in the spring 2012.
Skills and Knowledge Transfer (up to £20 million) – a flexible and locally targetable skills training programme to enable rural business growth. The fund will to be launched in the Autumn 2012 following completion of existing local skills programmes.
- Read the press release
An additional £3m will support schemes to improve footpaths and access, skills training for new entrants to the forestry workforce, and developing tourism support building on those being piloted by a leading AONB in the South East. The timing of the launch of these initiatives is to be confirmed.