[17.04.18] Deadlines for all Mid Tier and New CS Offers for Wildlife - Request your pack before 31st May 2018 Deadlines for all Mid Tier and New CS Offers for Wildlife 31st May 2018 - Last date to request an application pack from Natural England 31st May 2018 - Last day to request a visit/approval for specific items from your Catchment Sensitive Farming Officer (CSFO) and/or contact Natural England for approval to use one of the 9 new options 31st July 2018 - Application period close. Completed application and ALL evidence returned to Natural EnglandRequesting an application pack It is crucial that you request your application pack before the deadline of 31st May 2018. The request form can be found via this link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/countryside-stewardship-mid-tier-including-water-quality-capital-items-manual. If you are unable to complete the form online call Natural England on 0208 026 1089. To complete the application pack you will need your business details including SBI and CPH numbers. You need to state which Countryside Stewardship scheme you would like to apply for, see below the options available.Once you have requested your pack, Natural England will send you an electronic version of the application pack, annexes and maps unless a paper option is requested. Please note that if you opt to receive electronic maps you must be able to print them as A3.Although the full scheme can be whole or part farm, we recommend that you request whole farm maps, this will enable you to make decisions on which fields to include up to the application submission deadline on 31st July 2018.The application pack should arrive within 5 working days and the Historic Environment Farm Environmental Record (HEFER) within 20 working days, although there are currently delays in packs being delivered. The HEFER will be automatically sent to you.All agreements start on 1st January 2019. If your current agreement expires at any point during 2018 you must apply during this application round. All agreements last 5 years (including the New CS Offers for Wildlife) from the agreement start date, unless they comprise water capital items only, in which case the agreement lasts 2 years.Unlike past schemes, CS is competitive which means that applications will be scored against specific criteria, this may mean that not everyone who applies will be successful. Applicants are encouraged to choose options which will help to achieve environmental priorities in their local area. Mid Tier – Full scheme (whole or part farm)Five year agreements including multi-year options and capital items and support for organic conversion and management can be used to cover part or all of the farm. Mid Tier does not support woodland management.Organic management and conversion is not scored, applicants will be successful if they meet all of the relevant criteria.For some options you must seek pre-application approval from Natural England prior to including them in your application, this needs to occur before 31st May 2018. Option prescriptions describe if endorsement is required. New Countryside Stewardship Offers for WildlifeDesigned to simplify the application process. The four Offers available are: Arable Offer Lowland Grazing Offer Upland Offer Mixed Farming OfferApplicants can choose one of the four New CS Offers for Wildlife which offers a number of multi-year options to create a Mid Tier agreement without capital works.Wildlife Offers are not scored and provided that applicants meet the eligibility criteria they will receive an agreement offer. Capital GrantsTwo year grants relating to hedgerows and boundaries, developing implementation plans, feasibility studies, woodland management plans, woodland creation (establishment), and tree health. Hedgerows and Boundaries grant information can be found here - https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/hedgerows-and-boundaries-grant-countryside-stewardship Water Capital ItemsThere is a limited range of water capital items which can be used to create a Mid Tier agreement comprising only of capital items. The land must be in a ‘CS High Water Quality Priority Area’, you can check your eligibility on www.magic.gov.uk and applicants will need support and approval from local Catchment Sensitive Farming Officers. Contact your local CSFO by 31st May 2018 to guarantee help or a visit. The grants are available in combination with multi-year options as a 5 year agreement with no maximum grant value or as a 2 year capital only agreement with a maximum grant of £10,000.