Entry Level Stewardship (ELS) Handbook 2013 (NE349)

Appendix 6 - Glossary and list of abbreviations and acronyms


Agreement land
All land entered into a single Entry Level Stewardship agreement.

Agri-environment schemes
Schemes under EC Regulation 1698/2005 and Commission Regulations 1974/2006 and 65/2011 (as amended or as may be amended) that offer grants for measures to conserve and enhance the countryside.

Arable land
Land that has been in arable production, including temporary grassland and long-term set-aside, during the five years prior to the start of your agreement.

Common land
Land where management rights are vested in a number of individuals.

Countryside and Rights of Way Act (CRoW) 2000
Strengthens the legislation on the protection of Sites of Special Scientific Interest (see below) and introduces new rights of access on foot to open countryside (mountain, moor, heath, downland) and commons.

Agreed temporary relaxation from the specified prescriptions in an agreement.

A right enjoyed by one landowner over the land of another, for example a right of way.

Environmental Impact Assessment Regulations
The Environmental Impact Assessment (Agriculture) (England) (No.2) Regulations 2006..

Environmental Information Map
The map that Natural England will send to you, with your personalised application form, showing designations on your land such as SSSIs and Scheduled Monuments.

Environmental Stewardship (ES)
Replaced Environmentally Sensitive Areas and Countryside Stewardship Schemes from 2005. It has three elements - Entry Level Stewardship, Organic Entry Level Stewardship and Higher Level Stewardship. Uplands Entry Level Stewardship and Uplands Organic Entry Level Stewardship options offer a higher level of payment in return for environmental management of land within the Severely Disadvantaged Areas (SDAs).

Farm Environment Record (FER)
A simple record of the environmental features on your land, required as part of your agreement. As a condition of your agreement, you agree to retain the features identified.

Field Data Sheet
Annex 2 of the ELS application form, on which you have entered your ELS non-rotational in-field options.

Force majeure
A breach of your agreement caused by unforeseeable circumstances or events beyond your control which, in spite of the exercise of all due care, could not have been avoided except at the cost of excessive sacrifice.

For the purposes of ELS, grassland is defined as land that is used to grow grasses or other herbaceous forage naturally or through cultivation and which has not been subject to cultivation for at least five years.

Haylage is defined as preserved grass with a dry matter content of at least 60 per cent.

The process by which percolating water removes nutrients from the soil.

Less Favoured Area (LFA)
An area where the natural characteristics (geology, altitude, climate etc) make farming difficult. LFAs are subdivided into Severely Disadvantaged Areas and Disadvantaged Areas.

Livestock unit (LU)
A measure of grazing pressure, allowing stocking rate comparison between livestock types. Grazing livestock units are calculated according to conversion factors, which vary according to the type of animal.

Moorland Line
The Moorland Line encloses land within England that has been defined as predominantly semi-natural upland vegetation, or predominantly of rock outcrops and semi-natural vegetation, used primarily for rough grazing. The Moorland Line encloses nearly 800,000 hectares (42 per cent) of Less Favoured Area land.

Non-rotational options
Management options that remain in the same place on your land for the duration of your agreement (for example, hedgerow management).

Options Map
The map on which you mark the management options you wish to enter into Entry Level Stewardship.

Grazing of land which significantly reduces the growth, quality or species composition of vegetation (other than vegetation normally grazed to destruction) on that land.

Damage to the sward caused by concentrations of livestock.

Points target
This is the number of points required for an Entry Level Stewardship application to be accepted and is based on the total area of agreement land (for example, outside of the Severely Disadvantaged Area (SDA) the points target = 30 x hectares of agreement land).

Profit à prendre
This gives the holder the right to take natural resources from the land of another.

Rotational options
Options which can be moved around your land during the course of your agreement, for example skylark plots, wild bird seed mix plots, conservation headlands.

Rural Land Register (RLR)
A database of land parcels and areas within England, managed by the Rural Payments Agency. For land to be eligible for Entry Level Stewardship, it must be registered on the Rural Land Register.

Rural Payments Agency (RPA)
An executive agency of Defra, responsible for the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) payment functions, formerly delivered by Defra and the Intervention Board.

Scheduled Monument
Nationally important sites and monuments of historic interest that have been given legal protection by being placed on a list or ‘schedule’. English Heritage takes the lead in identifying sites in England that should be placed on the schedule by the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport.

Any distinct area within a parcel (which may even amount to the entire parcel area) which is clearly capable of being grazed (ie is not too dense) is eligible for SPS, while any distinct area which is clearly incapable of being grazed (ie is too dense) should be excluded, even if such areas are adjoined. This will mean that, for example, within a grass parcel containing scrub (not thistle), those grass parts which do not have scrub growing on them are eligible for SPS, as are those parts where the scrub is short and animals can walk over them and graze on the scrub. Any area where the inspector is satisfied that animals cannot penetrate for grazing, should be deducted.

Severely Disadvantaged Area (SDA)
These are areas which are, in the opinion of the appropriate minister, inherently suitable for extensive livestock production but not for the production of crops in a quantity materially greater than that necessary to feed such livestock as are capable of being maintained on such land, and whose agricultural production is, in the opinion of the appropriate minister, severely restricted in its range by, or by a combination of soil, relief, aspect or climate, or situated in the Isles of Scilly. Severely Disadvantaged Areas form part of the Less Favoured Areas.

Shared Grazing
Shared grazing(s) are communal pasture where graziers have a legal entitlement to graze (for example, a pasture used jointly by tenants) but where the land is not registered as common land.

Single Business Identifier (SBI)
A unique reference number for beneficiaries of rural development schemes, including SPS, to identify the owners/occupiers of land and to aid the co-ordination of inspections, implementation of cross compliance, and declaration of total EU funding received by each beneficiary.

Single Payment Scheme (SPS)
A decoupled subsidy payment replacing the 10 major Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) payment schemes, one of the major reforms of the CAP, which came into effect in 2005.

Where annual growth is not being fully utilised, or where scrub or coarse vegetation is becoming evident, and this is detrimental to the environmental interests of the site.

Uplands Transitional Payment (UTP)
A payment designed for farms that have Environmentally Sensitive Area or Countryside Stewardship Scheme agreements within the Severely Disadvantaged Areas. It is a payment based on the total area of your farm. The Rural Payments Agency administers the Uplands Transitional Payment.

Vendor number
A vendor is the name and correspondence address of a business that is entitled to receive grants and subsidies and each vendor is allocated a vendor number.

A watercourse is defined as a surface water body, whether a lake, pond, river, stream, canal, leat or ditch, which regularly contains standing or running water.


List of abbreviations

AONB Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
BASIS British Agrochemical Standards Inspection Scheme
CAP Common Agricultural Policy
CPH County Parish Holding
CSS Countryside Stewardship Scheme
Defra Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
ECS Energy Crops Scheme
ELS Entry Level Stewardship
ERDP England Rural Development Programme
ES Environmental Stewardship
ESA Environmentally Sensitive Area
EU European Union
FER Farm Environment Record
FYM Farm Yard Manure
GAEC Good Agricultural and Environmental Condition
HER Historic Environment Record
HLS Higher Level Stewardship
LCA Landscape Character Assessment
LU Livestock Unit
MESME Making Environmental Stewardship More Effective
NDPB Non-Departmental Public Body
NVZ Nitrate Vulnerable Zone
OELS Organic Entry Level Stewardship
RDPE Rural Development Programme for England
RLR Rural Land Register
RPA Rural Payments Agency
SAC Special Areas of Conservation
SBI Single Business Identifier
SDA Severely Disadvantaged Area
SHINE Selected Heritage Inventory for Natural England
SMRs Statutory Management Requirements
SPA Special Protection Area
SPS Single Payment Scheme
SSSI Site of Special Scientific Interest
TFB Traditional Farm Building
UTP Uplands Transitional Payment
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