Kent Downs and Marshes Leader Programme

Message from Huw Jarvis, Programme Manager, Kent Downs and Marshes Leader (Kent County Council):

The Kent Downs and Marshes Leader programme has now been confirmed and will be officially open for applications in June.  However the Programme Manager is willing to consider project ideas now.   Getting in outline applications early is essential in my experience.  The details of project eligibility have yet to be finalised but broadly speaking it is likely to follow these lines (it may change):

  • Leader will match fund between 40% and 100% of the costs of the project depending on the project
  • The maximum Leader contribution will be around £50,000.
  • Minimum grant will be £2,500
  • For the first time all of Maidstone’s rural areas are eligible
  • The programme will run for 6 years
  • There is roughly £250,000 per year
  • It’s a grant not a loan
  • Projects should:
    1. support micro and small businesses and farm diversification
    2. boost rural tourism
    3. increase farm productivity
    4. increase forestry productivity
    5. provide rural services
    6. provide cultural and heritage activities
  • Leader should be a fund of last resort
  • Innovative projects are favoured


If you have a project idea discuss it first with Huw Jarvis at KCC, the Programme Manager, his contact details are:

Huw Jarvis,
Programme Manager,
Kent Downs and Marshes Leader,
Tel; 03000 417104