From the seed of an idea, nature can grow.

To help you grow nature, there are lots of funds to explore that can help catalyse your community or business projects. 

This might include projects like:

  • Conversion or restoration of community greenspace to wildlife habitat: community orchards, ponds, wildflower meadows/verges, native hedges, street trees or woodlands
  • Environmental improvements to a community centre or village hall grounds: installation of bee bricks, bug hotels, swift boxes, nest boxes, tree planting
  • Coastal and marine projects: no anchor zones, initiatives to reduce single use plastics
  • Local wildlife training and monitoring schemes
  • Schemes to reduce invasive species, litter, noise or light pollution in the environment, including coastal areas and on the water
  • Environmental aspects of a heritage restoration scheme
  • Initiatives to help local people to connect with their environment.
  • Activities which encourage people to grow nature and increase the public understanding and enjoyment of wildlife and heritage.
Grow Nature Seed Fund

Cornwall Council’s Grow Nature Seed Fund aims to support small-scale projects that help create more space for nature within local communities. If you have an idea which will Grow Nature, join us and play your part in transforming your local area for wildlife and for people. Any locally constituted and recognised ‘not for profit’ organisation could be eligible.

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Tevi Business Grants

The Tevi Project’s Grant Fund is open under the current call.  Applicants should already be registered with TEVI and working with a member of the Tevi team who will help with the first stage – the grant referral form.  Once completed this will be independently scored and, if successful, invited to the full application stage managed by the Cornwall Development Company. For these calls TEVI are aiming to fund up to three grants in each of the following topics.  Up to £3,000 is available for each grant (at an intervention rate of 65%). The minimum grant is £1,000.

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Forest for Cornwall Fund

Cornwall Council’s Forest for Cornwall Fund fund aims to support any community-based projects that help to increase the tree canopy cover in Cornwall. Any locally constituted or recognised ‘not for profit’ organisation which seeks to serve the people or wildlife of Cornwall could be eligible.

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Carbon Neutral Cornwall Fund

Cornwall Council’s Carbon Neutral Cornwall Fund provides vital funding to projects or ideas that are helping tackle climate change through reducing carbon production; the removal of carbon from the atmosphere; environmental activity that is not tree planting; or increasing community resilience.

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Town and Parish Council and Community Group Carbon Plan Fund

Cornwall Council’s fund enables Local councils and community groups to apply for a grant to match fund 50% of costs, up to £2,000, to develop their own carbon inventory, action plan or feasibility work. The fund is specifically for helping develop work to understand your own carbon footprint, including how you can reduce emissions and work towards carbon neutrality.

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Apply for free trees

There are a number of organisations that operate Free Tree schemes. There are also other programmes which provide funding for school and community projects. All of these deliver environmental benefits. Check out Forest for Cornwall’s list of available schemes.

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SUEZ Communities Trust

The SUEZ Communities Trust aims to support community and environmental improvement projects through the Landfill Communities Fund and Scottish Landfill Communities Fund. A suitable funding zone is defined as being anywhere within a three mile radius of a qualifying SUEZ Recycling and Recovery UK waste processing location.

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St. Dennis and Nanpean Community Trust

The St. Dennis and Nanpean Community Trust has the responsibility of distributing the funds associated with the Cornwall Energy Recovery Centre (CERC). Funded by both Cornwall Council and Suez(Sita UK), the Trust receives £200,000 a year during the construction period and around £100,000 per year during the operational life of the CERC. The St. Dennis and Nanpean Community Trust aims to support projects and individuals who live in the area of benefit.

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Biffa award

Biffa Award projects make up an eclectic community across the country, with funding provided through its Main Grants Scheme as part of the Landfill Communities Fund to projects near Landfill sites. Under this scheme, Biffa Award provides funding to community projects that fit into four different themes: Rebuilding Biodiversity, Community Buildings, Cultural Facilities & Recreation. To be eligible for funding that could get you between £10,000 – £75,000, your project must work towards one of these themes.

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South West Water Community funds

South West Waters Neighbourhood Fund enables community groups to apply for up to £1,000, and registered non-profits up to £5,000. Its Water-Saving Community Fund also supports community water conservation projects, like drought-tolerant gardens and water butts in community allotments – with funds from £1,000 for community groups to up to £30,000 for non-profits.

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Cornwall Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty funding

The Cornwall AONB’s Environment & Landscape Fund seeks to support local community groups and businesses within the AONB to conserve and enhance the protected landscape. It supports support small scale projects with funding (up to £500) to help get them off the ground.

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Tamar Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty funding

Tamar Valley AONB’s Sustainable Development Fund supports individuals, community groups and businesses with projects projects that bring environmental, social and economic benefits to the Tamar Valley AONB. Grants of between £500 and £1,000 are available through the Fund. In addition, Tamar TLC is offering four grants of £250 to help smaller projects.

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Nature Recovery Fund (forthcoming)

This is expected to directly support delivery of the Nature Recovery Network, as will be defined by Local Nature Recovery Strategies. (£10m has already been allocated to the Green Recovery Challenge Fund listed below. It is not currently known how or when the remaining £15m will be allocated.)


Nature for Climate Fund

This £640m fund is to support afforestation and peatland restoration to deliver the national Trees Action Plan, Peat Action Plan, and to support species reintroductions (tba). £500m is allocated to trees, and will be delivered through the Local Authority Treescapes Fund, Urban Tree Challenge Fund, Woodland Planning and Creation Grants, and woodland creation partnerships (such as the Forest for Cornwall Woodland Creation Partnership). £50m for peat is being delivered through a Peatland Grant Scheme, with grants for restoration (such as SWPP’s project on Bodmin Moor) and discovery. £30m was allocated to the Green Recovery Challenge Fund listed below.

G7 legacy funding

Government announced a G7 nature legacy project in Cornwall which aims to knit together precious habitats in mid-Cornwall, to help develop Cornwall’s Nature Recovery Network. The project expected to take 5 years to complete, dependent on future funding.


Green Recovery Challenge Fund

This is a short-term competitive fund is a Covid-response fund, aiming to kick-start environmental renewal while creating and retaining a range of jobs in England. It funds projects involving nature conservation and restoration, nature-based solutions, and connecting people with nature. There have been two rounds, and a detail is expected on a possible third round.


Heritage Lottery Fund

The Heritage Lottery Fund supports a broad range of projects for nature, with grant schemes for projects between £3,000 and £5m. Nature is a a strong feature of its 2021-22 priorities.


Farming in Protected Landscapes

Farming in Protected Landscapes is a 3-year programme to 2024, providing grant-funding for Farmers and Landowners within AONBs and nearby areas. It is designed to deliver for People, Place, Nature and Climate – with nature recovery a priority focus. The programme is funded by Defra as part of Defra’s Agricultural Transition Plan, and is delivered locally by our AONBs. Details are available from Cornwall AONB and Tamar Valley AONB.


Environmental Land Management Schemes

Government’s new funding regime for farming is phasing out direct payments and creating new Environmental Land Management Schemes. It will include three schemes: the Sustainable Farming Incentive (piloting 2021, launching 2022), Local Nature Recovery (piloting 2022, launching 2024), and Landscape Recovery (piloting 2022, launching 2024). Each will have significant potential to support nature, and the second should link to our Local Nature Recovery Strategy.


Natural Environment Investment Readiness Fund

The natural environment investment readiness fund (NEIRF) aims to stimulate private investment and market based mechanisms that improve and safeguard our domestic natural environment by helping projects get ready for investment. It provides grants of between £10,000 and £100,000 to projects with a focus on generating revenue from ecosystem services like sale of carbon credits, biodiversity units or catchment services.

NEIRF funding

Fisheries and Seafood Scheme Fund

The Fisheries and Seafood Scheme (FaSS) is directed at the seafood sector for projects that deliver sustainable growth in the catching, processing and aquaculture sectors, and that conserve, enhance and recover the marine environment. The competitive fund is available to individuals or businesses, public bodies/local authorities with a focus on fishing/aquaculture activity, universities or research institutes, and NGOs.


Horizon Europe Funding

Horizon funding provides funding for ground breaking research or innovation, on themes including climate, food security, bioeconomy, natural resources, agriculture and environment. Following EU Exit the UK has remained an associate of Horizon Europe, giving UK applicants access to funding under equivalent terms to EU applicants.


Water Environment Investment Fund

This Environment Agency Fund supports projects to improve the status of water bodies. It is currently delivering its second cycle (2015-2021) of funding (2015-21), with priorities including habitat restoration, improvement and creation; diffuse agricultural and rural pollution; diffuse urban pollution; managing pollution from metal mines; managing the problem of invasive non-native species; managing flood risk by measures at a landscape scale; and in river habitat improvements.

Flood Defence Grant in Aid (FDGiA)

National funding for flood resilience includes a component called ‘Outcome Measure Four’ (OM4), which covers habitat creation and enhancement for things like wetlands, wet woodlands, ponds and lakes (OM4a), and re-naturalising rivers (OM4b). OM4 projects cannot be funded in isolation, but must be funded as part of a package to reduce flood or coastal erosion risks. Local Authorities (as Lead Flood Authorities) and the Environment Agency apply through Defra’s Capital Investment Programme (also referred to as the Medium-Term Plan), a six-year programme of projects that goes through an annual refresh (called ‘local choices’) which can see projects added or removed.

Aviva Community Fund

The Aviva Community Fund allocates from a total of £250k every three months, and one of its two priority areas is about preventing, preparing for and protecting against the impacts of climate change.

Aviva community fund

DPD eco fund

This fund allocates small grants of up to £2000, and is open to anyone, particularly encourage community groups, educational facilities and start-up companies – with all applications needing to be of a green, ecological or sustainability nature, with the project benefiting the environment.

DPD eco fund

Grants for Good

This fund allocates grants of up to £3,500 every three months to small local community group, charity, voluntary group or social enterprise projects that have a positive impact on communities, people or the environment. Applicants must have an average income of less than £50,000 in the last 12 months.

Matthew Good Foundation grants

HSBC Green SME fund

This new fund is available for businesses with a turnover of less than £25m and will offer 1% cashback on loans, starting from £1,0002 to help SMEs invest in green activities. This is the first green offering for small businesses with a cashback proposal in the UK. To qualify for the cashback, evidence must be provided that the use of the loan proceeds meet the criteria for green activities.

HSBC Green SME fund