Yorkshire Dales Countryside Cyclist (by EMossHBC) Flowers 2 (YDMT) (EMoss) RiverWashburn Craven Hillsides (RSB) Mature Woodland (YDMT) Poppyfield (RSB)

A Community Led Approach to Sustainable Rural Development


Yorkshire Dales LEADER Programme has been set up to build a sustainable community and economy that capitalises on the area’s environment, landscape, culture and heritage.



Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

Pathways to enable access – is the installation of pathways to the Wildlife corridors, to create enhanced access for less able bodied, allowing them to get out of the classroom and farm yard and explore the wildlife areas, which have been created across the farm along side other natural features such as rush pastures, woodland and upland meadows and minimising the impact of this access on the established wildlife and their habitats.


The pathways are at either end of the farm, with the 460m section in the north linking an established track to the lower meadows and pastures located at Hawksheath, showing the denser wooded areas and lusher grassland as opposed to the southern section (1290m) rising from the farm yard through upland and rushy pastures (Keasden Head High Pastures)  towards the moorland at the top of Keasden.  These pathways take you through the diversity of habitat located on an upland farm.

The pathways are 3m wide, with a 125mm crusher run limestone base to a minimum depth of 150mm.  On the southern 1290m section through to Keasden Head High Pastures an additional 80m french drain will be installed to remove the surface water from the pathway.

Work was carried out by a local firm, offering employment to local people for the period it takes to install them.

With these pathways in place the farm is able to increase the number of visits they host to over 1550 people, offering them better and safer access, being fully inclusive for all types of visitors allowing them to access the whole range of habitats that the farm has to offer from 500 foot to 1000 foot.



Skirbeck Holiday Cottage

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

The project is convert a barn on a farm premises into a high quality holiday cottage for up to 10 people.


This will provide extra income to the farming business and will generate money for reinvestment in the family farm. The project has delivered spacious and sympathetic conversion accommodation close to the A65. It is providing employment and is running at a high occupancy rate.

This was one of the early LEADER Projects in response to the first Calls for Projects. Conversion of barns to holiday accommodation is no longer grant aided by LEADER.


Japa 305 E Firewood Processor

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

Lindrick Logs has been trading within the Low Lindrick Farms Partnership for four years. It was started as a farm diversification in order to add value to the timber produced out of the farm woodlands.


With the purchase of a small wood processor, the Japa 305, to work in tandem with the larger Hakki Pilki processor, the business is now able to process  small diameter (less than 150 cms) timber coming from the clearfall of some of the beech woodland. This is ideal material for firewood.


Cragdale Laundry Services

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

Project upgraded the old and inefficient/ high energy/utility consumption laundry equipment with brand new equipment, fit for a modern laundry business.


The project will :

  • Enable the Laundrette to expand.
  • Reduce the business Carbon Footprint
  • Reduce business Gas/Water/Electricity Consumption.
  • Maintain and increase business staff numbers by 1.0 full time person.
  • Lower Breakdown costs.
  • A give a Better efficient service regarding the time taken by the service user.



Throstle Nest Farm Development

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

To drive productivity and dilute fixed costs, ensuring the business remains competitive the partners have installed a fourth milking robot. This will allow numbers of cows milked to climb from 180 to 240.


The farm has the accommodation to house the additional cows along with the land available to feed them. The additional 60 cows would be very profitable as the business would not need to invest in other machinery or land, with the current volatility in the milk market it is essential the business drives down the cost of production and the additional robot will help achieve this.

  To further drive profitability the business has moved away from the sodium lights currently in place to the latest LED system. This will help to reduce running costs whilst at the same time provide the 200lux of light required to get the best productivity out of the cows. 


Longthornes of Hebden - leading the way

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

The project is to increase the business in the haulier market, improve sustainability for the future and increase employment opportunities for young people in the area.


The aim is to expand the business by purchasing an additional wagons, take on additional business and employ three additional drivers and administration staff. 

The addition of new wagons will also improve and strengthen the business image, provide additional reliability, enable the business to work more efficiently in terms of reduced emissions and quieter vehicles and support the local quarries with an improved service and capacity.


A brand new ‘cheese experience centre’

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

This is a tourist attraction -creating a brand new ‘cheese experience centre’ with a museum style display area, room for courses and tasting, and a café themed around artisan cheese.


The Courtyard Dairy is a small retail shop, started in 2012 by Kathy & Andy Swinscoe that specialises in traditional farm made cheese.  They wanted to improve upon the Courtyard’s current standing by creating a brand new cheese experience. 

The project has created a brand new ‘cheese experience centre’, situated on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales. The centre tells the story of farmhouse cheese and involves:

A cheese production room for courses and tasting,

A museum style display area, incorporating interactive fact panels on farming, cheese madding steps and production, the history of cheese in the Yorkshire Dales, and an area showcasing cheese maturation,

A café themed around artisan cheese

Moving the existing cheese retail, mail order and wholesale business to the same site.



Peaks and Pods - Farm Diversification in rural areas

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

Peaks and Pods, at Boustagill Farm, near Rathmell near Settle, a farm diversification into luxury glamping for the discerning camper.


The grant from LEADER assisted the purchase and installation of  5 camping pods, showers and toilets, on land at the farm to provide environmentally sustainable accommodation for visitors to the area.  Peaks and Pods opened in August 2017 and demand has been high for the family and luxury pods. It even caters for small groups, with an outside covered seating area, pizza oven and home cooked take-away meals from the farmhouse.

The LEADER grant has helped diversify the income stream at Boustagill Farm, Rathmell through the creation of a new, stand-alone business which is generating  a new revenue stream, new jobs for local people and ensuring the farm holding remains viable for future generations of the family.


Artisan Cheese Production in Upper Nidderdale

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

This project will increase farm financial viability, sustainability and resilience through farm diversification into production of raw milk cheese from traditional upland cattle.


Utilisation of the farms natural resources and heritage provides a unique opportunity to produce a premium, unpasteurised, farmhouse cheese. This will be made using traditional recipes and sold through premium outlets. Watch this space for the first cheeses to start maturing.


Forcett Quarry Biomass Processing

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

Shire Country Services has been processing logs for the biomass sector for many years. They source timber from both local forests and other local forestry contractors. Timber is brought to the site in the round then converted to logs.


Processing includes drying of logs within the existing kilns heated by biomass boilers. The project aims to expand production from logs to local wood chip.

The aim is to create a local distribution and biomass production facility.  The main part of the project is a building capable of storing wood chip to service the local market.  The number of woodchip boilers in the area has grown significantly in the last 18 months.  As a continuation of this there is a local need for sustainably sourced and locally delivered biomass fuels.  The main part of the project is the erection of suitable storage for dry biofuels. The storage will need to be able to accommodate 3000cubic metres of wood chip. 


Heritage Timber Construction Training Centre

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

This project seeks to address a local, and indeed national, requirement for a training centre in heritage timber construction in order to maintain a number of key traditional skillsets.


Capital funding was required to bring a vernacular building on-site, known as the piggeries into a useable condition with the intention of opening a new Heritage Timber Construction Training Centre and expand a training facility.  The training centre will be used to run courses such as - Historic Timber House Construction, Oak Framed Buildings, Historic Roof Construction, Heritage Timber Repairs, Cruck Framed Building Construction & Repairs and Building with Green Timber. The building restoration was done in part by the students – learning as they worked.



Crimple Head Farm

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

This project aims to improve the sustainability, productivity and profitability of the farm business.


The objectives are to introduce new technologies to the farm to improve energy efficiency, reduce imput costs and support animal welfare improvements. Two items are proposed to meet these objectives: LED lighting and a mobile sheep handling system.

£2,930 was awarded in 2016 by the Local Action Group from LEADER funding towards equipment costs.


High Moor Farm

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

This project aims to improve the sustainability, productivity and profitability of this farm business.


The objectives are to introduce new technologies to the farm to improve energy efficiency, reduce input costs, better utilise and manage slurry and support animal welfare improvements. There are three items proposed within the project to meet these objectives; variable speed vacuum milk pumps, LED lighting and a Green bedding slurry separation system.

£30,100 was awarded in 2016 by the Local Action Group from LEADER funding towards building costs.


Old Home Farm woodland eco-cabins

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

This project involves the construction of four greenwood frame holiday eco-cabins around a lake within existing broadleaved woodland close to Old Home Farm.


The project will diversify the farm business and provide additional income and employment as well as introduce people to the countryside in an eco-friendly environment. The eco-cabins are to be constructed using traditional techniques and local materials; including local wood, and heated in a sustainable way using local biomass.

£35,000 was awarded in 2016 by the Local Action Group from LEADER funding towards building costs.


Woodhouse biomass

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

This project will improve storage, handling and processing of home-produced wood fuel at Woodhouse Farm Caravan Park.


The produced fuel will be used to fuel a woodchip boiler that provides hot water and heating for the caravan park. 1.31 hectares of new woodland has recently been planted to extend the sustainable supply in the future. Phased chipping using on-site machinery and undercover storage next to the boiler will allow for improved chip quality and moisture content and more effecient and economic operation.

£15,994 was warded in 2016 by the Local Action Group from LEADER funding towards building costs.


Peaks and pods

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

This project will develop a luxury camping facility at Boustagill Farm to offer accomodation to walkers, cyclists and families visiting Gisburn Forest and the wider local area.


Three luxury camping pods, two family pods and a smaller toilet and shower facility are to be installed. The aim is to offer family accomodation to enable visitors to have a base to explore different cycling routes each day without needing to transport bikes to different starting points. There is also the possibility to offer accomodation for touring cyclists. The business will be marketed as eco-friendly, with electricity being generated on-site and local food products being made available for visitors.

£33,149 was awarded in 2016 by the Local Action Group from LEADER funding towards building costs.


The cheese experience

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

This project will create a brand-new 'cheese experience'.


The 'cheese experience' will tell the story of farmhouse cheese, involving a cheese production room for courses and tasting, a museum incorporating interaction fact panels on farming and milking, the history of cheese in the area, cheese making steps and a cafe. It is hoped the cheese experience will increase public understanding and enjoyment of traditional farm-made cheese and provide a successful tourist destination to support the local community.

£33,099 was awarded in 2016 by the Local Action Group from LEADER funding towards building costs.


Dairy cubicle shed and parlour

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

This project will completely overhaul cattle housing at Home Farm.


The new building will give spacious well-ventilated housing facilities with good levels of natural light, uncompromised access to feed areas and a covered collecting area leading to a 24 point rapid exit parlour. Animal welfare and production will improve significatnly, not only as a result of the new system but also due to reduced level of labour input into daily activities.

£22,700 was awarded in 1026 by the Local Action Group from LEADER funding towards building costs.


Skirbeck holiday cottage

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

This project will facilitate the conversion of a barn into a holiday cottage, providing non-farm income to the business to make it a more secure and robust business.


The holiday cottage will enable visitors to experience staying on a farm. This redevelopment will provide new employment opportunities and enhance employability skills for local young poeople. The aim is to develop high quality accomodation that will encourage tourists to stay in the rural community, then supporting the local shops, restaurants and cafes.

£34,955 was awarded in 2016 by the Local Action Groups from LEADER funding towards the building costs.


capital items, Croft Farm Partnership

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

This project will 'kick-start' our new family farming business and enable it to operate efficiently with new technology. We currently have poor livestock handling facilities and no EID reading equipment or farm software.


The mobile handling system will enable us to efficiently work with livestock, improve animal welfare and create a business opportunity for farm contracting services, and sheepdog demonstrations/training. The EID reader will cover our legal requirements regarding sheep identification and used in conjunction with farm software will improving the management of our flock.

£ 2,592.40 was awarded in 2016 by the Local Action Group from LEADER funding towards the equipment costs.


Discover Upper Nidderdale

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

The ‘Discover Upper Nidderdale’ project has been developed by a newly formed partnership of tourism businesses, Nidderdale Plus and Nidderdale AONB. The project will develop and promote Upper Nidderdale as an all-year-round tourism destination, building on the area’s rich heritage assets to provide a diverse range of rural tourism attractions tailored to the needs of existing and emerging markets.


The project’s objectives are to: • to build a year round tourism offer and encourage collaboration between businesses; • Improve visitor orientation in Upper Nidderdale by creating 2 on-the-ground visitor information points • Improve physical access to Upper Nidderdale through the creation of 4 new walking routes, associated on-line information and upgrading the Upper Nidderdale Way section of the Nidderdale Way. • Install on-site interpretation at 2 ‘Flagship Heritage Sites’ at Prosperous Lead Mine, a nationally important lead mining site and at Lodge Village, an abandoned village on the site of a former medieval grange and associated on-line information. • Develop and market two experiential tourism products focussed on ‘Upper Nidderdale as a walking destination’ and ‘Dark Skies" destination.

£ 25,698.07 was awarded in 2016 by the Local Action Group from LEADER funding.


Improving productivity of hill sheep flock

Yorkshire Dales Leader Programme

This project will improve the overall performance of the hill sheep flock through improved sheep handling facilities which will allow more frequent gathering of the flock in order to improve the management and welfare.


A mobile sheep handling unit was purchased in December 2016 in order to be able to gather the sheep flock directly on Heathfield Moor. This moor is infested with sheep ticks and these facilities will allow more regular treatment which will benefit both sheep productivity and grouse welfare. Through the more regular and timely sheep handling flock productivity will improve.  It will also release currently non-productive time thus allowing more ewes to be kept and managed, following the purchase of this equipment, and as more land becomes available.

£ 3,492.00 was awarded by the Yorkshire Dales Local Action Group from LEADER in 2016 towards the equipment purchased.

Projects featured


Top Ten Tips for Applicants


 1.        Start planning early

If your project is successful you will need to be very organised in order to be able to claim the money.  It is much easier if you understand from the start what you will need to do later.  You can then budget in the costs to your project.  Don’t try to change your project in order to match the funding stream – there will be more appropriate sources of funding out there. Please read carefully the National Issued Applicant Handbook to ensure LEADER is the right fund for your project.

2.        Talk to other similar projects in your area

You may get some good ideas from other projects, and your project is likely to be stronger if you can collaborate with others.


3.        Check the website and guidance notes when completing your form

There is lots of help and information available for you to save you time and make your life easier.  The guidance notes explain a lot about what we are looking for in your application and even give some examples of how to fill in the form. Take time to read them several times to avoid simple mistakes being made. Re-read the National Issued Applicant Handbook.

4.        When writing your application, assume that the reader knows nothing about your organisation or your project

Explain clearly who you are and what you intend to do.  It is fine to use acronyms if you explain them the first time you use them.  Try to see your project from the LEADER panel’s point of view.  What will make them want to fund it? The funding is discretionary, so make full use of the application form.


5.        Make sure you explain exactly what you want the money for

Explain very clearly what you want the money for and how you have arrived at these costs to make sure the decision makers understand your project properly


6.        Include the right skills and expertise in your project team

It won’t help if you try to “make do” – you need to ensure that you have the right skills to carry out your project effectively.  That gives your project the best chance of success, and any professional skills you reasonably need to buy in can also be added to the project costs.

7.        Every section of the application form will be considered when making the final decision

For example, evidence of need helps to show why you need to carry out the project at all. The options appraisal helps show how you came to the conclusion that the project proposal is the best way to meet these needs.  The risk assessment demonstrates that you have really thought the project through and are realistic about what could go wrong and how you would deal with it.

8.        It will help to provide additional information with your form

If you have them, your environmental and equal opportunities policies will help show that you take our cross cutting themes seriously.  You may want to include letters of support if approporiate.  All Capital projects will be expected to provide architect’s plans. 


9.        Grants are paid in arrears, so make sure you can cover cashflow

You will have to pay the invoices in relation to your project before you can claim the money back from us, so make sure you have a way of paying them in the first place.

10.    Your project sponsor is there to help you –

Rima.berry@ydmt.org or 015242 51002