AF logo

£120m EU rural growth fund launched across England

The most significant rural grant scheme in recent times has today been launched by the Rural Payments Agency (RPA) with £120m of grant funding available for rural businesses to apply for across rural areas of England.

The Growth Fund is part of the Rural Development Programme for England and is funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD).

Grants are available across a range of investment types and are designed to facilitate the growth of the rural economy, leading to increased productivity, improved efficiency and the creation of new employment.

The three main categories of the grant are as follows with different levels of grant available depending on where your project is situated:

  1. Food & Drink Processing – Up to £1m grants available to support Food and Drink processing projects that introduce new or improved processes and techniques, leading to increased productivity and job creation, open new product markets to the business, adding value to supply chains and reducing the need for import.
  2. Business Development – Up to £170k grants available to enable expansion and/or improve productivity across rural industries, create new skilled jobs, enable diversification of farming businesses into non-agricultural activities and generally help to improve the rural economy.
  3. Tourism Infrastructure – Up to £170k grants available to create new and sustainable visitor attractions or leisure activities or improve existing ones which; Increase the range of activities for visitors, increase the number and length of overnight stays in the area, extend the visitor season, encourage higher visitor spend and create year-round sustainable employment reducing the reliance on seasonal work.

The grants are generally up to 40% of eligible expenditure with support available for most capital costs of a project.

There is a competitive application process with funding available on a first come first served basis so it is important to progress plans quickly.

We have direct links into the programme so will be able to advise on whether or not your project has the potential to apply for funding and if so, our team of experts can carry out the full application process on your behalf.

If you feel as though you have a project or investment that suits one of the categories above then please do not hesitate to contact the GrantResource team on 01603 881833 or email

< Back to news