New Funding Opportunities from European Regional Fund for Rural Development

EAFRD funding through the RDPE Growth Programme supports projects that increase rural jobs, growth and productivity in the Heart of the South West. Funding is split across three specific strands – business development, food processing and rural tourism infrastructure.

There are currently three live calls for all of the three strands, and HotSW businesses are encouraged to apply. The minimum grant for each application is £20,000.

These calls are open until 16 February to rural businesses looking to invest to create jobs and boost the economy. Guidance and application forms are available here.

There is a two-stage application process in which businesses are first asked to submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) which means that the outline aims of the project can be assessed on its merits – without the initial need to complete a detailed application. Subject to the RDPE Growth Programme accepting the EOI, applicants are then asked to submit a full application.

There are useful handbooks for each grant – whether applying for funding for Business Development projects, Food Processing or Tourism. They include helpful tips on how to complete the forms and what information is needed for successful applications. They also show examples of successful case studies of projects that have previously been successful in securing grants.

Following successful applications by rural businesses, 52 projects in the HotSW area are already contracted for EAFRD funding.