What is this for?

The Rural England Prosperity Fund (otherwise referred to as "Rural Prosperity Fund") is a capital grant programme integrated into the UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF) and supports activities that specifically address some of the challenges faced by our local rural areas*

*Rural areas are:

  • towns, villages, and hamlets with populations below 10,000 and the wider countryside.
  • market or ‘hub towns’ with populations of up to 30,000 that serve their surrounding rural areas as centres of employment and in providing services.
  • Eligible areas for the Rural Fund can be identified using DEFRA’s ‘Magic Maps’ tool.

Aims of the Fund

The Rural Prosperity Fund objectives sit within the UKSPF investment priorities for:

  • Supporting Local Business.
  • Community and Place.

The Fund supports the aims of the government’s Levelling Up White Paper and Future Farming Programme and funds capital projects for micro and small businesses which will help to improve productivity and strengthen the rural economy.

Doncaster has been allocated £634,307 as part of this fund. This has been split 40% in 2023/24 (£253,723) and 60% in 2024/25 (£380,584). This is to provide capital grant funding (investment in buildings, plant, equipment and machinery) across two themes:

  • Capital grant funding for small scale investment in micro and small enterprises in rural areas,including capital funding for net zero infrastructure and diversification outside of agriculture to encourage start up, expansion or scale up of these businesses where this involves converting farm buildings into other commercial or business use
  • Capital grant funding for developing and promoting the visitor economy (including local attractions, trails and tourism products more generally)

Grants of between £2,500 - £12,499 will be available, but you must be able to match any funding that you are applying for with your own funds. Payments are made at the end of the process, so you will need to be able to fund the project fully by yourself before any reimbursements are made. In exceptional cases we may consider applications for larger grants, however you must be able to demonstrate that your project significantly contributes to the outcomes of the scheme.

Applications will be assessed on a first come, first served basis and subject to funding still being available

Who can apply

Only businesses that fall into specified rural post codes will be eligible to apply (see “Before you apply” below for further details)

Your project must be located within the administrative boundary of Doncaster Council.

Your business must fit into one of the two “themes” mentioned above.

You will not be eligible to apply for funding for projects that are already receiving grant funding from other DEFRA schemes or

You will not be eligible to apply for grant funding for any projects that have already been committed to.

The grant will be open for applications between 18th March 2024 and 15th November 2024. Applications are dealt with on a first come, first served basis, therefore the application window may close early if all of the funding is utilised.

Before you apply

Please ensure that you have read and understood the accompanying guidance document:

RPF Grant Application Guidance 2024-25
Download (487KB - PDF)

Please check that the location of your project is eligible for this grant by using the Magic Maps application.

The RPF Grant Application Guidance document (download above) explains how to use the Magic Maps application.

What is it going to cost?

There is no charge to complete the application form however you must be able to match any funding that you are applying for with your own funds. Payments are made at the end of the process, so you will need to be able to fund the project fully by yourself before any reimbursements are made.

What we need from you

  • Details about your business including turnover, number of employees, which sector you operate in and any relevant reference numbers (such as VAT ref, Companies House ref, Unique Taxpayer Ref etc).
  • Details of your project including how it will contribute to one of the two themes mentioned above, location of the project, whether the project requires planning permission, associated costs, expected start and end dates etc.
  • Competitive quotes for any works being undertaken, preferably from local suppliers/contractors where possible (nb. your chosen contractor/supplier cannot be linked to you or your business).

What you should expect from us

A member of the Business Doncaster team will work with you on your application form, you will also be asked to provide any quotes that you have obtained

Following submission of your application, the team will undertake financial due diligence checks against your business and you will be asked to provide any quotes that you have obtained

A grant assessment panel, consisting of three members, will determine your application.

If your grant application is successful, you will be sent a funding agreement, vendor form and any other necessary documents to complete and return to us.

Once you have signed and returned the necessary documents and these have been acknowledged, you will be authorised to proceed with any works.

If there are any unauthorised changes to your project, the grant offer may be withdrawn and no funding will be paid.

If you cannot provide the necessary evidence (such as paid invoices and evidence of defrayal within the timescales required, this also may result in the grant offer being withdrawn and no funding being paid.

More information

How to Apply

To apply for the grant or if you need any further information or assistance, please contact the Business Doncaster team:

APPLY NOW VIA info@businessdoncaster.com


Call us: 01302 735555

Useful Links:

Rural England Prosperity Fund: National Prospectus

Magic Maps - Rural Area Definitions

Check Whether You Need Planning Permission


PLEASE NOTE: The DO IT NOW button below directs you back to the above button links to email or telephone Business Doncaster team directly to apply.
Do it Now
Last updated: 13 March 2024 16:41:04