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This blog post was published under the 2015-2024 Conservative Administration

Watch: How we put unproductive farmland to use

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: A view from the farm

In our latest film, we explore how environmental improvements and farming work together in the Lake District.

Filmed in spring last year, local farming facilitator Danny Teasdale took us to Strickley Farm in Cumbria, to meet dairy farmer James Robinson.

Danny and James showed us a piece of farmland that has always been unproductive and prone to flooding.

In the film, James and Danny explain how they re-meandered the stream through the flooded area to create a natural habitat for wildlife that can also be used for grazing livestock.

Danny talks about his role in facilitating the project and James gives a rundown on all the wildlife and flowers that have flourished since the beck and ponds were created.

Thanks to James and Danny for taking part.

Read the transcript.

Learn more about farming payments in England

Landscape Recovery

Landscape Recovery supports landowners and managers to take a large-scale approach to producing environmental and climate goods on their land, alongside the sustainable production of food.

The second round focuses on net zero, protected sites, and wildlife-rich habitats.

You can apply for Landscape Recovery funding until midday on 21 September 2023.

Read the Landscape Recovery guidance and how to apply.

The Sustainable Farming Incentive

The Sustainable Farming Incentive (SFI) pays farmers to adopt and maintain sustainable farming practices that can protect and improve the environment.

We recently published the SFI handbook and blogged about what to expect from the new, expanded SFI offer in 2023.

Countryside Stewardship

You can apply for Countryside Stewardship (CS) to get paid to manage habitats, woodland, flood risk and reduce water pollution.

Over the course of this year and next year, we'll evolve CS. You can learn more about our plans in our environmental land management update. It includes the environmental land management actions that will be available.

Farming in Protected Landscapes

The Farming in Protected Landscapes programme funds farmers and land managers in Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONBs), National Parks and the Broads.

Funding is available for projects that:

  • support nature recovery
  • mitigate the impact of climate change
  • provide opportunities for people to discover, enjoy and understand the landscape and its cultural heritage
  • protect or improve the quality and character of the landscape or place

Contact your local protected landscape body for advice on your eligibility.

The complete offer

To look at every one-off grant and ongoing payment, visit Funding for farmers and land managers on GOV.UK.

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  1. Comment by Alex J H Farris posted on

    What an excellent advocate James is for farming sensitively with nature who clearly has a thorough understanding and affinity with the natural world. The green dock beetle is also a great example of the co-benefits that nature can bring.

    • Replies to Alex J H Farris>

      Comment by The Team posted on

      Hi Alex,

      Well put! We couldn't agree more. It's brilliant to see.

      There is one more film to come from Strickley Farm, it's about the work they've done to protect watercourses. We'll publish it next month, so if you haven't already, subscribe to the blog for an email alert when it's published:

      Thanks for taking the time to visit our blog and comment.

      Best wishes,
      The Team

  2. Comment by James Hedger posted on

    So what source of revenue funding is the farmer getting? I can't find any source for my 9 acre area with stream just like James'....not enough points apparently for FiPL or Higher tier.

    • Replies to James Hedger>

      Comment by Graham posted on

      Hi James
      Thanks for your query. This project was facilitated by Danny Teasdale's Ullswater non-profit Community Interest Company and funded through the Environment Agency's River Restoration Strategy. Danny welcomes enquiries so please feel free to contact him if you have any further questions
      Best wishes,


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