Farmers across large parts of Shropshire will soon be able to apply for a grant of up to £20,000 to help them improve the water quality on their land.

The Water Capital Grant Scheme is set to open in February as part of the latest round of Countryside Stewardship (CS) applications.

Farmers in High Priority Water Quality Areas are eligible for the funding, which includes north Shropshire.

Funds of up to £20,000 are available to pay for capital works designed to improve water quality by reducing the amount of silt, nutrients or pollutants entering watercourses and groundwater aquifers.

Rhydian Scurlock-Jones, head of rural at Savills in Telford, said: “The amount of funding available has doubled this year, so it’s a good opportunity for farmers and landowners – particularly as environmental credentials are coming under closer scrutiny.

“Applications are expected to open in mid-February, so now is an ideal time to start thinking about the capital items on offer. We’ve had several clients ask us already about how they can utilise the grant to make improvements.

“Examples of popular options available under previous schemes include concrete yard renewal, livestock and machinery hard-core tracks, hard bases for livestock drinkers and sprayer or applicator load and wash-down areas.

The process is fairly straightforward but some options will require the endorsement of your local Catchment Sensitive Farming Officer (CSFO).”

Successful applications will start on January 1 2022 for two years.