NFU adviser Anna Logan helps BPS applicants get their paperwork in order, focusing on supporting documentation and evidence and problems with the Young Farmer Scheme last year. She writes:
As we approach the last month before the BPS 2017 deadline (15 May 2017), it’s worth double-checking whether you need to submit any supporting documents to accompany your application and to make a start at getting these together.
Such documents could be:
- Organic certificate and parcel schedules if you are relying on the organic exemption for greening
- Young or new farmer form signed by an accountant or solicitor, if you are applying for the young farmer payment or entitlements from the national reserve
- BP5 continuation booklet if you have extra land which isn’t showing online
- Accountant certificate to confirm Active farmer status if applicable
- Hemp seed labels if hemp is being grown
- RLE 1 form and maps if you need to notify RPA of any mapping changes etc.
Remember that these supporting documents form part of your application, therefore they must arrive at the RPA by 15 May 2017 to avoid penalty. These documents still cannot be emailed to the RPA, so you are reliant on Royal Mail or hand delivery. There are only six drop-in centres available this year, which are the main RPA offices – Reading, Exeter, York, Newcastle, Workington and Carlisle. You can find the addresses here.
Problems with the Young Farmer Scheme last year...
As always, please call NFU Callfirst on 0370 8458458 if you are uncertain of what you need to do.