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Warwickshire Rural Hub


Third and final round of Countryside Productivity Small Grants Scheme is open

The Countryside Productivity Scheme provides funding for projects in England which improve productivity in the farming and forestry sectors and help create jobs and growth in the rural economy.  All farmers (including livestock, dairy, arable and horticultural sectors) can apply for this grant.  Farmers can apply for funding towards specific items of equipment listed at Annex 3 of the Countryside Productivity Small Grant scheme Round 3 handbook.  All the items will help to make improvements in either:

  • technical efficiency
  • animal health and welfare
  • resource efficiency, or
  • nutrient management

The Countryside Productivity Small Grant scheme Round 3 is open from 7 October 2020 until noon on 4 November 2020.  Full information is available on this page.

Green Home Grants for homeowners, landlords and tradespeople

Make your home warmer and your energy bills cheaper with a Green Homes Grant.   Homeowners in England, including landlords, can get up to £5,000 to pay part of the cost of energy saving measures like insulation.  If you’re a tradesperson, make sure you’re eligible to carry out work under the scheme, which will support thousands of green jobs.  Tradespeople and businesses that are appropriately certified to install energy efficiency and/or low carbon heating improvements in homes need to register with TrustMark to carry out work under the scheme. This confirms to homeowners that you will install measures to high standards.

Vouchers must be used to install at least one primary home insulation or low carbon heating measure.  If you choose to install at least one of the primary measures, you can use your voucher to help cover the cost of secondary measures.  The grant for the secondary measure is capped at the value of the grant  provided for the primary measures.   For full details on the scheme please visit this page.

Post-furlough support for businesses and the self-employed – the main points

The main points of the Chancellor’s post-furlough support for businesses, announced on 24 September, are:

Job Support Scheme
The government will subsidise the pay of employees who are working fewer than normal hours due to lower demand
Workers must work at least a third of their normal hours and employers will pay staff for the hours they work
The government and the employer will pay a third each for the hours they can’t work
The grant will be capped at £697.92 per month
All small and medium sized businesses will be eligible for the scheme and larger business will be eligible if their turnover has fallen during the crisis
The scheme will run for six months starting in November and replaces the furlough scheme

Business loans
Bounce Back Loans will be extended from six years to ten years
Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme lenders will be able to extend the length of loans from six years to ten years
Businesses struggling can choose to make interest only payments for six months or apply to suspend repayments altogether for six months

The 15% emergency VAT cut for the tourism and hospitality industries will be extended to 31 March 2021
Businesses who deferred their VAT bills will be able to pay back their taxes in 11 smaller interest-free instalments

Support for the self-employed
The Self Employment Income Support Scheme Grant will cover 20% of average monthly profits up to a total of £1,875 for the period from November to the end of January 2021
A further grant may be available to cover February 2021 to the end of April, depending on circumstances
Self-assessment income taxpayers can apply to be given more time to pay their tax due

Grants of up to £10,000 for Worcestershire farmers and growers

There are a limited number of capital grants of between £2,000 and £10,000 (50% match funded) to provide support for Worcestershire agricultural and horticultural businesses to increase mechanisation on agricultural holdings.   The fund will support new and innovative investments in technology, rather than purchase of standard equipment.   Eligible farmers and growers must be operating within Worcestershire and have a Worcestershire business address.  Businesses from the agriculture sector may only apply for the Agriculture and horticulture grant and are not eligible to apply for other grants available under the Here2Help Business programme.  Full information is available on this page.  

Skills support for eligible small businesses

The Coventry & Warwickshire Skills 4 Growth project is managed by Coventry City Council, working in partnership with Warwickshire County Council and the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership and Growth Hub to deliver accredited training ranging from leadership and management through to technical and soft skills.  The focus is on the skills needs and gaps of a company, with customised packages developed to address business requirements and support business growth. 50% of the costs of agreed training could be funded, eligibility criteria applies.  To receive support companies must employ up to 250 people, be operating in a Coventry and Warwickshire postcode and be registered as a company working in a Manufacturing/Engineering sector or Service Sector Industry.  For further information please visit this page.  

Residential park home firm seeks land

Serenity Parks is extending its portfolio of parks and are looking for locations across the UK to develop new retirement communities.  Serenity Parks specialises in providing an ideal lifestyle for residents in later life, offering accessible yet high-end park homes in desirable locations across the UK.   For queries please contact their Planning Department on or telephone Free Phone 0800 644 4499, option 3.  Alternatively please visit this page for further information.

Read the 4th edition of Farm Diversity magazine online

Farm Diversity aims to guide farmers and landowners through their diversification journey, hopefully to alleviate doubts about diversifying and put people in touch with someone who can help make a new business a success – whether that’s glamping, weddings, energy production or something completely different.  In the 4th edition of their magazine you can discover how farmers across the UK are making their land more profitable thanks to more unusual projects. Also in this issue, there is a look at how farmers are diversifying their agricultural practices to bring their businesses into the 21st century, increasing productivity and cutting waste.  There is also a focus on funding, as well as articles on renewable energy, consultancy, and a whole host of news and view in the farm diversification arena.  To read the magazine online please visit this page. 

Glamping company looking for land for luxury lodges

Glamping company Oasis Habitats is looking for landowners interested in the hospitality industry, who can welcome guests to 5 luxury accommodation units installed by the company.   The land should be in or close to areas of natural beauty and within an hour and a half travel from a large town or city. In return landowners will receive a generous income to the value of 25% of the resort’s revenue profits, without the associated costly investments needed.  For further information please visit the Oasis Habitats website, email them on or telephone 01249 848649.

Survive, Sustain and Grow – support for businesses in Warwickshire

Warwickshire County Council has launched a new £300,000 initiative called the “Survive, Sustain and Grow” programme which will provide an enhanced business consultancy service to assist businesses with their post Covid-19 recovery plans.  The program is open to all micro and small enterprises based in Warwickshire and will offer a tailored Covid-19 recovery support package through its network of specialist consultants. They will assist in developing and delivering a robust business framework that will identify key stages, challenges, opportunities and potential access to grant funding the businesses should consider as they progress towards succeeding post Covid-19.   All support will be provided free of charge and will look to engage with companies in all business sectors but with a focus on Retail, Hospitality, Tourism & Leisure.  For further information please visit this page. 

Severn Trent Farm to Tap scheme to run again in autumn 2020

The Severn Trent Farm to Tap scheme works with farmers to help mitigate the impact from pesticides and other run off from agricultural land on water quality.    Last year 840 farmers joined the scheme, and Severn Trent had their best ever year of results.  The scheme will run again this autumn.  To join the scheme, you need to be growing winter wheat and/or oil seed rape this autumn in one of Severn Trent Water priority catchments: More details are available on the Severn Trent website.

Grants for businesses which complete customs declarations

The government has three grants to help businesses which complete customs declarations.  You can apply to get funding for:

  • training that helps your business to complete customs declarations and processes
  • hiring new staff to help your business complete customs declarations
  • IT improvements to help your business complete customs declarations more efficiently

Visit this page to see if your business meets the application criteria and guidance for applications.

Coventry and Warwickshire Green Business Programme

Do you want to save money on your energy bills and the make the most of low carbon opportunities?  The Green Business programme can help you identify energy savings and support the development of new low carbon products and technologies.   For further information visit this page.

Coventry and Warwickshire Innovation Programme

Supporting the development of new innovative products and technologies for SMEs, the programme provides a range of assistance including one-to-one support, networking and access to grants of up to £100,000.  Visit this page for further information.

Coventry and Warwickshire Business Support Programme

A free service comprising one-to-one or group support targeted at new businesses, or established businesses with under 250 employees who want to grow.   Visit this page for further information.

Gigabit Voucher Scheme for small and medium sized businesses

If you are a small or medium-sized business, you may be able to get a grant of up to £3,000 to upgrade your business broadband to a Gigabit capable connection.   Details of approved suppliers can be found at the link below.

Website: Open Website

HS2 Woodland Fund

You can apply for funding to support native woodland creation or the restoration of Plantations on Ancient Woodland Sites (PAWS) within a 25-mile zone surrounding the HS2 route – currently in Phase One, from London to the West Midlands.

See the HS2WF map (PDF239KB1 page)

The HS2 Woodland Fund (HS2WF) opened on a ‘first come, first served’ basis in February 2018, with an initial budget of £1 million. A further £4 million budget is now available to be allocated to projects until 2022/23.  The fund is open year round, but applications are assessed 4 times per year. View the assessment deadlines for 2020 – 2021.  The next closing date is 27 November 2020 for winter 2021/22 planting.

Updates to digital maps

The RPA is currently updating digital maps and will use this latest mapping data when calculating BPS 2017 payments. Claimants of Environmental / Countryside Stewardship and Forestry Legacy Schemes may need to review the changes to make sure their applications and/ or agreements are correct.

CFE advises voluntary maintenance of expiring environmental schemes

The Campaign for the Farmed Environment is encouraging farmers who are in Environmental Stewardship schemes to voluntarily maintain conservation work when the scheme has expired. Voluntary management may assist such farmers to benefit from any future schemes, post Brexit, and returning such land to production will undo the investment of time and money already made, says CFE.

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Contact Us

The Warwickshire Rural Hub CIC
c/o Pleasance Farm, Kenilworth
Warwickshire, CV8 1PR

Tel: 07780 159291

Company Registration No: 7026157
Registered office: 23 West Bar Street, Banbury, OX16 9SA


Hub Chair

Henry Lucas




Jane Hampson

Tel: 07780 159291

Warwickshire Rural Hub CIC Directors

Henry Lucas (Chair)
Graham Collier (Deputy Chair)
Karen Ellis
Carrie Robbins
Alexandra Robinson

Hub Steering Group Members

George Bostock, NFU
Mark Dickin, Ellacotts Accountants
Tom Newbery, Highfield Farm
Alexandra Robinson, Wright Hassall LLP
Matt Willmott, King's Seeds
Jon Slee, Abbey Farm
Andrew Cook, Farmer
Emlyn Evans, Squab Hall


The Warwickshire Rural Hub accepts no liability for any direct, indirect or consequential loss arising from any action taken in reliance on the information contained on this website.

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