Grants and regulations

Grants for planting and managing woodlands

These are available from the Scottish Government under Rural Development Contracts – Rural Priorities and are delivered jointly by Scottish Rural Payments and Inspections Directorate (SGRPID), Forestry Commission Scotland (FCS) and Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH).

For forestry or woodland associated grants, our web pages give you details of what you need to do before you apply, a short guide to the application process, the types of grant available and a suite of specific technical help guides.

Transitional arrangements during 2014

The last Scotland Rural Development Programme (SRDP) closed on 31st December 2013.  The next SRDP will be open for business during 2015.  Until the new Programme is open certain transitional arrangements have been agreed for forestry options.

Briefing Note 9 (PDF) gives a full update about the transitional arrangements.

Options open to applications during 2014 transitional arrangements

  • All Woodland Creation options except natural regeneration
    Note: Farmland Premium payments are restricted to 12 years for options where the previous payment term had been 15 years to follow the new SRDP rules
  • Woodland Improvement Grant – Long Term Forest Planning
  • Woodland Improvement Grant – Restructuring regeneration
  • Woodland Improvement Grant – Woodland Habitats and Species – work must take place on designated site SSSIs
  • Woodland Improvement Grant – Non-Woodland habitats – work must take place on designated site SSSIs

Extended availability for Planning Grant

The FCS Planning Grant, introduced in January 2012 for productive woodland creation proposals has now been extended to cover all woodland creation options open during the 2014 transitional arrangements.

Detailed information about all forestry options, including the rates of grant available, is on the Scottish Government website

Public Registers

There are two online public registers:

Register of New Planting and Felling – areas and location of applications we receive for creating new woodlands (includes RDC-RP applications) and for felling trees

Register of Environmental Impact Assessments – details of the decision we have made when assessing certain forestry projects for their effect on the environment

Felling Licences

If you intend to fell trees you may need a felling licence approved by us before you start. Information about possible exemptions and an application form are available on the felling licences pages.

Environmental Impact Assessment

When we get applications to plant trees, fell them without replanting or receive proposals to construct forest roads or quarries, we are required to make an assessment of the effects that project might have on the environment. 

If we decide that the project will have a significant effect, the applicant must formally apply for consent and to do so must provide an Environmental Statement. This will describe how the significant effects will be dealt with.

Full details are on the Environmental Impact Assessment page.

Woodland Grant Scheme and Scottish Forestry Grants Scheme

Now closed to new applicants but information is available about submitting claims and making amendments to existing contracts. For details see legacy grants scheme information.