European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development

On 14 March 2017, Thames Valley Berkshire LEP, the Rural Payments Agency and the North Wessex Downs LEADER group have announced the launch of £720,000 of rural business grants for small businesses in the area.

Grants are available to businesses in tourism or those seeking funds to further develop their rual business.If you missed the event, please click here to access the presentation.

If you are unsure whether RDPE Growth Fund or LEADER is the right programme for you, click here for more information.

For detailed information on the grant application process and the EAFRD Calls launched, please click here

LEADER ProgrammeClick on image to enlarge


LEADER is a French acronym which means “Liaison among Actors in Rural Economic Development’ it is an EU funded rural grant programme designed to support local businesses. The LEADER programme has been running across England for more than 10 years and a new round of grant funding will now operate from 2015-2019. It is different to the EAFRD programme that is in our EU strategy but we are working with the three LEADER groups to ensure that there is linkage. 

How to find out if you are within a LEP rural funding area or a LEADER Group area
LEP and LEADER boundaries have been included on MagicMap. This is the government website that provides geographical information and is presented as an interactive map, which can be explored using the various tools included.
You can use your project postcode to check whether it falls within a LEP or LEADER funding area. 

LEADER in Berkshire, there are 3 LEADER groups in Berkshire:

Value of grants

Between £5,000 and £100,000 (varies with LEADER group); for commercial projects up to 40% of eligible costs; for non-commercial / non-profit making projects up to 85% but there may be some flexibility depending on the project.  

Detail of what can be funded can be found in the North Wessex Downs Applicant Handbook but as there are slight differences between programmes any applicants need to speak to their local contacts.


North Wessex Downs


Loddon Test Valley






Dawn Hamblin

Amber Kell

Emily Preston


Most of West Berkshire

Small area north of Maidenhead

West of Wokingham including Arborfield, Spencers Wood, Burghfield


For information on all LEADER groups across England see: