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Countryside Stewardship Scheme Woodlands 2015 Summary

Date Published: 24/02/2015

The following is an outline of the Woodland grants under Countryside Stewardship Scheme 2015 Interim. The scheme is still a work in progress.

From 17th February, 2015 funding is available, to maintain momentum in the priority areas of:o woodland creation (eligible for entitlements but not EFAs)o woodland management plans to ensure woodland owners are in a position to apply for other support when full Countryside Stewardship openso addressing tree health issuesThe schemes will be on scoring basis.

Creation
For woodland creation, there is a limit of £6,800 per hectare for planting and protection.
10 year annual maintenance payment (was Farm Woodland Payment) but starts 1st January, 2017 so allowance made in capital payment for 2016.
Minimum size is 3 hectares per holding with minimum parcel size 0.5 hectares.
Where woodlands for water scheme minimum size is 1 hectare per holding with minimum parcel size 0.1 hectare.

This is also subject to various criteria similar to EWGS. Final date is 30th May, 2015 for 15/16 planting season but 31st April, 2015 cut off for applications as must have site inspection.

Management
Required for 10 hectares and over.
Minimum grant £1,000o Online application with FC approved template.
In future will need management plan (to UK FC Forestry Standard) & felling licence (now separate entities) for selling or using woodchip where RHI is in place (ie must be sustainable)

Tree Health

Restocking after clearance Phytopthera (larch) & Chalara (ash die back).
No support clearance of ash but both diseases have a minimum of 0.5 hectare and £1.28 per tree replacement.

Countryside Stewardship will open in full in July 2015 with additional capital items and options for existing woodland. These will include a multi-year option and capital items to support woodland improvement. Applications for woodland management plans and woodland tree health support will continue to be accepted throughout 2015. Guidance for the full scheme will be published in the spring, ahead of the scheme opening in July.