The NFU is aware that some members are experiencing issues when trying to access the application forms for individual licences from Natural England’s website.
The NFU understands that the forms may be best accessed through Internet Explorer but not through Google Chrome or Microsoft Edge browsers. The NFU has raised its frustrations with Natural England regarding these issues and, in order to assist members, has made the applications available to download using the links below.
NFU members can download the forms here:
The NFU is also aware that some users are facing issues with a ‘mailbox full’ error message when returning completed application forms to Natural England’s email address. The NFU understands that Natural England are working to rectify this as soon as they can.
Talking on the matter, NFU Deputy President Guy Smith said:
“The situation our members find themselves in is completely unacceptable. Not only are they in the dark about the status of general licences moving forward but they are now being prevented by technical issues from applying for individual licences that could provide some relief. We have expressed our frustration with Natural England and emphasised the urgent need to rectify these issues as soon as possible.”
Natural England have given some recommendations when filling out an application form:
- Save the relevant application form to your computer before you fill it in. You can do this by right-clicking on the link to the form and selecting ‘Save target as’ or ‘Save link as’.
- A tablet or mobile device should not be used to fill out an application form.
- You can use the free Adobe Acrobat Reader to complete a form.
- Save your changes as you fill in a form. If you do not do this, you risk losing your work.
Instructions to complete and return the application forms are included at the top of each application form and can be returned to Natural England by email or post.
If you require a paper copy of an application form call Natural England on 020 8026 1089.
According to Natural England, general licences will be restored as quickly as possible, starting with species that are most likely to require urgent control. Find out more at gov.uk.
If you're using deterrents and scarers to help limit the damage caused by birds, follow the NFU's bird scarers code of practice to ensure you're using them responsibly and to avoid noise complaints from neighbours.
More on this topic:
Recognising the importance of general licences that allow farmers and growers to control certain wild birds to protect livestock and crops, here is an update of NFU activity on this to date: