Nature Restoration Fund

Who can apply

Applications are welcomed from:

  • Constituted community groups
  • Public sector bodies
  • Charities
  • Voluntary and social enterprises
  • Co-operatives and community ownership initiatives
  • Development trusts


This year, there is an increased focus on outcomes which address the main drivers of the decline in biodiversity on land and seas particularly rural biodiversity. For example, where on land, over-exploitation of the natural environment and addressing its consequences, habitat loss and fragmentation, and removal of invasive non-native species.

To deliver this aim, the fund has four strategic themes:

  • Habitat restoration – management for enhancement and connectivity
  • Freshwater restoration, including hydrological change
  • Eradication of invasive non-native species impacting on nature
  • Coastal and marine management to promote restoration and resilience

The capital funding allocated to Local Authorities is to support new, or to enhance existing approaches that further biodiversity, and which adhere to the following criteria:

  • deliver positive effects for biodiversity and enhance local ecosystems
  • address the climate emergency and its impacts through mitigation and adaptation and by promoting nature-based solutions

Types of projects supported

The types of projects which will be supported may include, but are not limited to:

  • Action for pollinators (equipment for maintaining wildflower areas or verges including planting)
  • Improving condition and use of Local Nature Reserves (purchase and planting)
  • Developing a local nature network through planting of wildlife corridors, removal of barriers to wildlife movement and pollinator planting
  • Greening active travel routes (purchase and planting)
  • Natural flood management actions such as connecting rivers with flood plains, pond creation, de-culverting, in-stream works for habitat and flow variability
  • Removal of invasive non-native species (INNS) to improve the biodiversity value of the remaining habitat
  • Habitat and species enhancement works using native stock, enhancing natural coastal defences through marram, addressing coastal squeeze.

The fund can only support capital expenditure that directly enhances biodiversity. Revenue costs such as project management are not eligible however labour costs to undertake the approved works will be accepted.