LEADER grants

The 2015-2020 LEADER programme is now closed

LEADER was part of the Rural Development Programme for England which was managed nationally by the Rural Payments Agency and funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development.

Under LEADER, Local Action Groups awarded grant funding to local businesses and organisations to help them carry out projects which created jobs and benefited the rural economy.

The scheme opened for grant applications in Autumn 2015 and closed to new applications in Autumn 2019.

West Sussex County Council supported two Local Action Groups:

  • Central Sussex included the rural areas of Horsham, Mid Sussex and Lewes Districts
  • Sussex Downs and Coastal Plain included the rural areas of Chichester and Arun Districts and Hayling Island in Havant.

The Local Action Groups were made up of local public, private and community representatives, who worked together to agree priorities and award funding to projects that met those priorities.

Farmers, foresters, small rural businesses and rural community groups could apply for grants for projects that would contribute towards achieving the following funding priorities:

  • vibrant economy with quality jobs
  • great place to live, work and visit
  • micro and small enterprises that thrive and grow
  • resilient land-based sector
  • robust year-round visitor economy
  • innovative service infrastructure which addresses the needs of local people.

Projects funded by the Local Action Groups supported growth in farm productivity, small enterprises, tourism, rural services and forestry.

Together, the West Sussex Local Action Groups awarded LEADER grants totalling £2.89million to support 81 projects in the area. The grants attracted more than £4.4million additional investment and created 93 new jobs.

Contact us

For further information and advice please contact the LEADER Delivery Team.