Further support for farmers hit by flooding and exceptional wet weather over the winter has been made available part of the Farming Recovery Fund, with £50 million to cover farms of all sizes across the country.   

The new eligibility criteria opens up the scheme to thousands more farmers who have suffered significant damage to their land as a result of prolonged and extreme wet weather and flooding, and will help support UK food security.  

Farmers whose land has been severely affected by flooding and wet weather, and who are likely to need to do work to remediate land to make it possible to farm it in future, will be eligible. Payments will be made this summer. 

The Farming Recovery Fund originally opened in April, providing grants between £500 – £25,000 for farmers to return their land to the condition it was in before flooding due to Storm Henk. Following feedback from farmers, the scheme was updated to remove the 150 metre limit on land flooded by a river, thus including all flooded land near to an eligible river.   

The scheme has now been significantly expanded to include a wider geographical area of farmers who suffered river flooding. It now also includes those who experienced damage due to extreme rainfall.   

Farmers whose land has been significantly damaged by water caused by flooding or exceptional rainfall this winter and spring will receive a payment to help cover the costs of bringing their land back into production. The Rural Payments Agency will identify farmers who are eligible for the payment and contact them with payments expected to be made to eligible farmers this summer.   

This is an exceptional, one-off intervention to respond to the exceptionally wet conditions affecting farming this winter and spring, and in the context of the agricultural transition. The government also is bringing forward the second instalment of this year’s delinked payment, which will now be paid from September, helping all farmers with cash flow following the impact of wet weather. This will follow the first instalment, which is due to be paid from 1 August.    

Recovery grants will help contribute to the costs of land remediation, including recultivation, soil remediation or the removal of debris and pollution. To keep the scheme straightforward and workable, Defra has based the payment rates on an assessment of average likely costs. Farmers will have flexibility to spend the grant appropriately in their context and will not have to provide evidence of damage or costs or make further claims.  

To identify eligible farmers, Defra will use mapping data to determine land close to rivers that has been flooded, in the counties most affected by flooding over this period. Defra will also use rainfall data to establish other areas across the country that have experienced exceptional rainfall (more than 70% higher than normal) over the period.  

Eligible farmers will receive the recovery grants from the RPA and will be contacted directly by RPA.  

Source: Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs and The Rt Hon Steve Barclay MP

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