HL Deb 27 October 2003 vol 654 cc16-7WA
Baroness Byford

asked Her Majesty's Government: Whether Regulation 4(3) of the Entry Level Agri-Environment (Pilot) (England) Regulations 2003 (S.I. 2003/838) means that the pilot will last for five years, or that it will be possible for later entrants to benefit for five years. [HL4861]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Whitty)

Regulation 4(3) means that any agreement that the Secretary of State enters into with an applicant can last for a maximum of five years.

There are 274 participants in the entry level agri-environment scheme in four pilot areas who have entered five year agreements from 1 August 2003 to 31 July 2008. We are not planning to invite any further applications into the pilot scheme. If the evaluation of the pilot scheme shows that it was successful, the Government hope to roll out a national entry level scheme across the country from 2005. Under the new scheme commitments will run for five years from the start of the agreement.