Midnight on May 17 is the deadline for the following – BPS application forms, entitlement and land transfers, and annual revenue claims for existing Countryside Stewardship agreement holders.
Farmers are encouraged to apply as soon as possible to ensure they are submitted ahead of the deadline. However, you should only be declaring all land that is at your disposal for May 17.
If your BPS application requires supporting documentation this can be submitted without penalty up to June 11.
A number of simplifications have been made to the BPS this year, in the hope of reducing the burden on farmers as focus switches to transferring to the new system.
These include minor changes to Cross-Compliance, an increased use of warning letters, and offers of advice over farmers receiving a penalty as the default response to a breach of the rules. It was also announced in 2020 that the greening requirements would be removed in 2021, although farmers will still have to meet the minimum standard on the environment, animal and plant health and animal welfare.
Ellie Watkins, Agri Advisor