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Rural Development Programme (RDP)

Supported businesses, farmers, the countryside, and communities in rural areas across Wales from 2014 - 2023.

New rural funding is available now via the UK Government Shared Prosperity Fund, Rural Anchor: Funding for rural areas

European agricultural fund for rural development and Welsh Gov logo.

The programme was part of the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD), funded by the European Union and Welsh Government. The Rural Development Programme (RDP) helped rural Wales to:

  1. Increase the productivity, diversity and efficiency of Welsh farming and forestry businesses, improving their competitiveness and resilience, reducing their reliance on subsidies.
  2. Improve the Welsh environment, encouraging sustainable land management practices, the sustainable management of our natural resources and climate action in Wales.
  3. Promote strong, sustainable rural economic growth in Wales and encourage greater community-led local development.

The Welsh Government provides up-to-date comprehensive information on the Rural Development Plan and all the various strands - Rural Communities – Rural Development Programme 2014-2020 (Welsh Government) (opens new window)

The Wales Rural Network (opens new window) is a one-stop-shop for news, events and information about rural development, helping to make connections with other people, communities, organisations and businesses across rural Wales and beyond.

In Swansea RDP delivered the community-led programme LEADER in the 8 fully eligible wards of Mawr, Llangyfelach, Pontarddulais, Penclawdd, Fairwood, Bishopston, Pennard, and Gower; and partially supported in the three service wards of Clydach, Gorseinon and Gowerton.

The RDP in Swansea

To support the implementation of the RDP within our rural wards, the Swansea RDP set up a local action group (LAG) made up of people from the third, public and private sectors.

The LAG submitted its RDP LEADER rural local development strategy 2014-2020 (PDF) [2MB] to the Welsh Government and was successful in securing funding from the RDP LEADER programme.  

Swansea RDP's LAG has successfully refreshed its governing document the 'Local Delivery Strategy' (LDS) to incorporate a new approach to the way in which work was delivered in our rural communities. The LDS incorporated One Planet principles to address climate change, by placing sustainability and community resilience as the fundamental element of our work.

This was the first time any local authority LAG had used the One Planet approach in Wales to affect strategy and grant making decisions. It was a new way of working and thinking, which was required from those who wished to partner with Swansea RDP. It was in line with its acknowledgement of Swansea Council announcing a climate emergency and the urgent need for everyone to change tack away from 'business as usual' to a way of doing things to protect the lives of future generations.

Swansea RDP's vision was a 'one planet' future for a rural Swansea which:

  • increased community resilience and self-reliance by producing more of what it consumes
  • does this in a way that was less damaging to people's health and the environment
  • supported more abundant natural resources and biodiversity
  • encouraged an end to needless waste
  • yielded more local and meaningful jobs
  • gave greater protection from the possibility of disruption in the rest of the world in the environment, trade and the economy
  • reduced the area's ecological and carbon footprints

The 3 strategic aims covered in the LDS were:

  1. Increase wellbeing and ecosystem resilience through maintaining and adding value to natural and cultural resources
  2. Develop sustainable transport and energy initiatives that reduce emissions and mitigate climate change impacts
  3. Strengthen the self-sufficiency of the local economy and support active, resilient, and connected communities

Rural Development Programme (RDP) projects

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