Rural Sustainable Drainage Systems – Swales

Date published: 24 November, 2017

For recent changes to this guidance, please see the bottom of the page.

Aim

The aim of this item is to improve water quality by creating a strategically placed swale to slow, treat and control run-off that currently discharges direct to a watercourse or freshwater drain and to direct flow to a point (e.g. a pond) where it can be safely discharged.

Eligibility

Any land is eligible, provided that it meets all of the requirements set out below.

Where a swale receives run-off from a steading, you must combine this option with at least one of the following associated capital items (except where the swale only accepts roof run-off or is located on an intensive pig or poultry unit):

Spatial targeting

You can check if this item is available on your holding here.

Application requirements

You must prepare a plan which must include a map of the relevant fields / steading identifying the location of the rural sustainable drainage system feature and the point to which it discharges.

For rural sustainable drainage system features receiving run-off from a steading, the plan must include a calculation of the size of the rural sustainable drainage system feature(s) based on the amount of run-off draining to it (treatment volume).

You must also produce a diffuse pollution steading assessment.

It is important that the assessment clearly identifies the source of the run-off to be collected, where it currently discharges to (e.g. river) and the pathway - how the run-off gets from where it originates to the watercourse.

Requirements

  • only run-off which currently discharges direct to a watercourse or freshwater drain and which does not fall within the definition of slurry or silage effluent may be conveyed to a swale *
  • run-off from pesticide handling or washdown areas must not be conveyed to a swale

* Unless the run-off is being conveyed to a constructed farm wetland designed in accordance with the Constructed Farm Wetland Design Manual – Scottish Environment Protection Agency / Northern Ireland Environment Agency – 2008.

Payment

You can claim £21.75 per square metre (excluding fencing).

Inspections

The inspectors will check:

  • the location and extent of the swale
  • that only run-off which does not fall within the definition of slurry or silage effluent is conveyed to a swale *
  • that run-off from pesticide handling or wash-down areas is not conveyed to a swale

* Unless the run-off is being conveyed to a constructed farm wetland designed in accordance with the Constructed Farm Wetland Design Manual – Scottish Environment Protection Agency / Northern Ireland Environment Agency – 2008.

Additional guidance

Recent changes

Section Change
Spatial targetingWe've updated the target area map

Previous versions

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