28th November 2018

Full text of our briefing and comments is available at this link:
Friends of the Lake District briefing and comments


Friends of the Lake District welcomes the Agriculture Bill which will make payments for the delivery of public goods, and cease area support payments simply for owning land. However, we wish to see landscape specifically listed as a public benefit and also the Bill make it a duty rather than a power to make payments for public goods (thereby ensuring it happens and not just may happen if desired).

We have concerns that the Bill as drafted is not sufficiently robust to secure the desired benefits for our landscape, natural and cultural heritage (including common land), our rural and upland communities and those who live and work within them.

We also welcome payments for cultural and natural heritage, providing public access and enabling young farmers, and the clarity on the length of the transition period (until 2027) giving farmers and land managers more confidence to make plans to adjust and adapt. However, it is still unclear what the overall budget will be and if there will be enough money to deliver healthy landscapes and communities.

S11 of the Bill covers rural development and there are references in the policy statement to the value of traditional farming in upland areas, but it is not clear how these areas will be supported.