Women in Agriculture Practical Training Fund

Women in agriculture

Please note that due to an overwhelming response to the Women in Agriculture Practical Training Fund, the allocated funding has now been committed and the Fund is closed for the time being.  There may be unspent funds which can be allocated in due course and we will also be reporting to the Scottish Government on any further demand, so please complete our Note of Interest Form in the meantime.

The Women in Agriculture Practical Training Fund has been established by Scottish Government to support the personal development of women, providing them with additional skills to progress their careers and employment opportunities in Scottish agriculture beyond their current role.

One of the key findings of research into women in farming and the agriculture sector was that there was a clear need for more access to, and uptake of, vocational, practical training for women across the industry.

“We want more women in agriculture to have opportunities to develop their skills and talents. As well as supporting our Fair Work agenda, ensuring the sector is accessible to women will help to ensure the long-term sustainability and resilience of Scotland’s rural economy" (Programme for Government (2019-20).

What kind of courses can I apply for?

Courses eligible for funding can include: business skills; environmental and sustainability; health and safety; plants and animals; vehicles, machinery and equipment.  Other courses will be considered if applicants sufficiently demonstrate the relevance and value of the training.


Examples of Training Providers

Argyll College UHI

Borders College

Borders Machinery Ring

Borders Training Group

Braehillor Sheepdog Handler Training

Central Caithness Training Group


Highland Business Services

Inverness College UHI


Lews Castle College UHI

Lothian Machinery Ring

Moray College UHI

Nithcree Training

Orkney College UHI

Perth College UHI

Perth HGV

Perthshire Plant Training (Scotland)


Rural Services Scotland


Shetland UHI


Tarff Valley

Tayforth Machinery Ring

West Highland College UHI

WSM Training

You can see examples of the courses available at the foot of this page.

Who is eligible to apply?

The Women in Agriculture Practical Training Fund offers financial support to women resident in Scotland who meet at least one of the following criteria:
•    They are already living or working in Scottish agriculture
•    They are studying agriculture full-time or part-time
•    They are keen to start work in Scottish agriculture

Criteria for applications

This fund is now only open to first-time applicants. If this changes, we will let you know here and on social media.

Applicants must demonstrate how a specific training course will either:
•    support the development of their own agricultural business (this may include a family farming business, within which they have a role or in which they wish to increase their role)
•    or increase their further employment opportunities within Scottish agriculture.

The Women in Agriculture Practical Training Fund advisory group will look for the following when assessing applications:
•    Clear evidence and explanation of the value of the grant to the applicant and how it will support the development of their own agricultural business or further employment opportunities in Scottish agriculture.  
•    The value for money of the training course itself in relation to the overall training marketplace (i.e.: that the cost the training provider has provided to the applicant is too high or low)  
•    The potential of the grant to promote greater gender balance within Scottish agriculture.   
•    If this is the first time someone has applied and the application meets the criteria above, we will prioritise this application over applicants who are applying for a second round of funding.

What will NOT be funded

The WIA Practical Training Fund is aimed at supporting individual women in Scottish agriculture, who would otherwise not have access to training and development courses.  
It is NOT designed to support larger agricultural employers, who ought to be investing in the training and development needs of all their staff and should have a staff development budget allocated to cover these needs.  
Training that would NOT be funded includes:
•    training which is a statutory requirement for the individual’s continuing employment
•    training that an employer has specified that an individual must undertake to retain existing employment
•    any training which the Fund advisory group considers that an employer could and should provide for, including training for their current role.      

If you would like guidance on your eligibility, what you can apply for, or any part of the funding application process, contact either scotland@lantra.co.uk or one of the training providers above

How much can I apply for?

Funding for 100% of costs is available for training up to the value of £500 per course.

Applications for training over the value of £500 will still be accepted and will be assessed depending on the value to the individual or business.  All applications over the value of £500 will be discussed and reviewed on a case by case basis by the advisory group.

Application process

Applications for each monthly funding round close on the 20th of each month and open on the 21st for the following month.


Can I apply for more than one course?

This fund is now only open to first-time applicants. If this changes, we will let you know here and on social media..

What courses are eligible?

Courses eligible for funding include financial, technical, business efficiency, improving sustainability, plants and animals or those covering machinery and equipment training. Applications will be scored against the value to the individual and the business and whether the course is a legal requirement or more developmental in nature.

Can I get funding for a test, for example on trailers?

Because this is a training fund, it doesn’t cover standalone tests, but you can apply for funding if your training course includes an assessment or test.

What happens if I am unable to attend the course?

If you fail to attend training with no reasonable notice, you may be liable for the full costs of the replacement booking.

How will my application be assessed?

Lantra staff will look at your application, but if we have any queries it will go to our Review Panel, which meets at the end of every month.

At the latest, we will give you a decision within five working days of the panel meeting, as long as your application came in by the 20th of that month. We may ask you for more information so we can look at your application again at a future panel meeting.

The panel is made up of a representative from the Scottish Government (which is funding the training), a representative from Lantra Scotland with practical farming experience and knowledge of accredited training, and another with administrative and training delivery experience. Where required, the panel will draw on internal and external specialist advice.

Is there a deadline for completing the training?  

Once we confirm that you are getting funding, you have six months to complete the training. In exceptional circumstances this may be extended.

Need support?

If you would like guidance on your eligibility, what you can apply for, or any part of the funding application process, contact either scotland@lantra.co.uk or one of the training providers above.

Although the fund is currently closed, you can register your interest here.

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