Clava cairns by Inverness

Rural Policy

Farmers, foresters and other land managers are supported financially by both the Scottish Government and the EU.

Basic Farm Payments

Payments for farmers who had previously been receiving subsidy in the period 2007-2014, as well as some scope for new entrants. This accounts for ca. 85% of all EU & Scottish Government  funding under the CAP (Common Agricultural Policy). This totals c£650m per annum. Payments are partly conditional on following cross compliance regulations, known as GAEC, that provide protection to Scheduled Monuments as well as other landscape features inclduing dykes, copses, and ponds. Further details can be seen here.

Scottish Rural Development Programme (SRDP)

This programme operating from 2015 -2020 is now being rolled out. Current information can be viewed at  This includes –

Agri-Environment Climate Scheme – in contrast to similar earlier schemes there are only limited options for heritage site. It is  available for Scheduled Monuments only as a secondary outcome. The next application window will be in 2016.

Environmental Co-operation Action Scheme – only limited opportunities for heritage are currently being proposed.  The scheme opens in August 2015.


Less favoured Area Subsidy Scheme (LFASS)

Payments for maintaining livestock in upland areas, currently covering c85% of Scottish farm land. Though cross compliance regulations under LFASS from 2007 ncluded the protection of all archaeological and historic sites, this has now been dropped because of problems in verifying  compliance. Only available to farmers.

Forestry payments

Forestry funding is managed directly by Forestry Commission Scotland under the SRDP  through the Forestry Grant Scheme and includes options for public benefits such as funding for public access as well as for management plans, woodland creation and more conventional forestry activities.