Peatland ACTION - Fund - How to apply

Scotland-wide peatland restoration.

Peatland ACTION Funding

Peatland ACTION funding - from Scottish Government - primarily supports on-the-ground peatland restoration activities and is open for applications from eligible land managers who have peatlands that would benefit from restoration. There are no geographical restrictions or target areas for Peatland ACTION funding. Where appropriate, we also make multi-year offers for large-scale projects.

Find out more about what we fund and whether your proposed restoration activities meet the fund’s outcome and eligibility requirements. 

Peatland ACTION - what we do

We use techniques that include installation of peat dams in man-made ditches to increase water levels, allowing the peat-building mosses, called sphagnums, to re-establish. We also support more novel techniques, such as peat hag re-vegetating by using the surrounding vegetation to stabilise the bare eroding peat.

Peatland ACTION – Timeline for processing applications 2024/25

As per the messages posted on our website in March and April NatureScot’s Peatland ACTION programme set a deadline this year (31 May) for the receipt of applications. We recognise the effort required to develop projects to this stage.   Thank you to all those who submitted applications. 

We are now progressing to the next stage of the process and as of 3 June we will be working to the indicative timeline set out below. There are dates of particular importance that we would like to highlight to applicants, agents, and contractors which relate specifically to the tendering phase (if projects have been submitted with estimated costs).

Starting w/c 3 June Peatland ACTION will complete an initial assessment of all the applications received. The outcome of this assessment will be the identification of a list of prioritised projects. These projects will be asked to move to the tender phase (only applications based on estimated costs). We will inform you if your project has been prioritised by 14th June.  At that point you need to commence your tender exercise(s), using PCS, and provide Peatland ACTION with the updated cost information by 19 July. We recognise this is a relatively tight turnaround, but it is required if we are to allow sufficient time to complete the remainder of the process as planned and issue contracts in time for work to commence as early as possible in the Autumn.




31 May 2024

Application deadline – fully applications must be submitted by midnight on 31 May 2024.

We will not accept applications received after this time.

Your application will be scored on the basis of the information submitted alone. We are unable to make requests for missing information and we will not accept information submitted after the deadline. 

W/C 3 June 2024

Initial assessment exercise completed by Peatland ACTION team.

W/C 10 June 2024

List of prioritised projects identified.

Applicants with projects on this list will be contacted and asked to commence the tender exercise if their application is based on estimated costs.

Projects will need to be tendered using the PCS portal.  You might find it helpful to familiarise yourself with PCS in advance so that you are quickly able to upload your project.  You will need to register as a buyer (see notes below for help and advice.)

Applications not progressing to the prioritised list will be informed of next steps.

19 July 2024

Applicant deadline for submitting tendered project costs.  We are unable to offer any flexibility on this deadline.

From 22 July 2024

Assessment for all projects will be finalised.

Projects will be ranked and the package of affordable projects finalised.

W/C 5 August 2024

SG notified of approved package of projects.

Successful applicants contacted to confirm application has been approved and funding offer to follow.  Funding team commence issuing grant offers.

Unsuccessful applicants contacted.


PCS portal - the portal has a range of information and support guides as well as a dedicated Customer Service Team that can be contacted by email or telephone. The details are available at Public Contracts Scotland. 

Important: To use the PCS portal, you will first need to register free as a ‘buyer’ via the PCS portal: Public Contracts Scotland - Register as a buyer. If you have any difficulty registering as a non-public body, you should email the PCS Customer Services Team confirming you are applying to Peatland ACTION, funded by Scottish Government, and are required to use the portal.

How to Apply for restoration funding - a new approach to processing NatureScot Peatland ACTION applications – March 2024 

NatureScot is evolving its approach to supporting peatland restoration in response to this maturing market and the growing demand for support and a new approach to processing NatureScot Peatland ACTION applications will take effect from March 2024. We will be updating our application documents in the coming weeks to reflect this change in the application process. 

Deadline for NatureScot Peatland ACTION applications is no later than 31 May 2024. Initial decisions on these applications will be made by the end of June 2024. 

If you are interested in developing peatland restoration projects please contact us at [email protected] our Project Officers will support you to develop your project, help you understand the Peatland ACTION Fund and assist you to complete your application and supporting information. 

Arrangements for the National Parks

If your project is located within either of Scotland’s National Parks visit their websites or contact the relevant national park Peatland ACTION Team to discuss your proposals:  

Peat depth and peatland condition surveys

A peat depth and peatland condition survey is needed before restoration work starts. In most cases survey data must be submitted along with your Peatland ACTION funding application. 

We can arrange for surveys to be undertaken at no cost to you. 

Feasibility Studies

Please note that our delivery processes are currently being reviewed and no new feasibility studies will be taken on during this time. We will hopefully be in a position to accept new feasibility study enquiries again later this year.

Those already in the pipeline will continue to be progressed.

A Feasibility Study is developed to identify, assess, and map areas of potential peatland restoration and use the results to produce in-depth peatland restoration and management plans. The restoration and management plans can then be used to inform an application to the Peatland ACTION Fund to deliver restoration works.

If you are interested in a future feasibility assessment send your completed Feasibility Study Enquiry form and site map to [email protected]  

Permitted Development Rights

The Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development and Use Classes) (Scotland) Amendment Order 2020, introduces new Class 20A, specifying permitted development rights (PDR) for peatland restoration projects. This means that full planning permission is not required for peatland restoration projects but there is still a planning process (prior notification / prior approval) to go through. 

The prior notification / prior approval (PN/PA) process is a two-stage process, which allows a planning authority to consider whether a proposal requires closer scrutiny before it is approved. This process must be gone through before the restoration works can begin.    

Most of the information needed to submit a prior notification will be provided as part of the development of a Peatland Action project.  Ideally, you should submit your Peatland ACTION application once you have submitted your prior notification.

More information is available in the Scottish Government Planning Circular (Advice and Guidance). 

Peatland Code

The Peatland Code is part of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) UK Peatland Programme. It is a voluntary certification standard for UK peatland projects wishing to market the climate benefits of peatland restoration and provides assurances to voluntary carbon market buyers that the climate benefits being sold are real, quantifiable, additional and permanent. 

Much of the data gathered for a Peatland ACTION project application can be used to inform a separate Peatland Code application. Processes and applications can run in tandem. 

If you have decided to undertake a Peatland ACTION funded peatland restoration project and would like your project to also be Peatland Code validated, and later verified visit the IUCN UK Peatland Programme web pages on the Peatland Code for further information and guidance on this or contact the IUCN Peatland Code team.

The Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015

The Construction (Design and Management) Regulations (2015) (the Regulations) apply to all peatland restoration projects.  

All applications must demonstrate that the necessary steps have been taken during the planning and design stages to ensure compliance with the Regulations.

Information on the Regulations and the responsibilities for all involved in a restoration project is available in our guidance note.

Our spatial data

Spatial data is important to allow us to monitor and report on the effectiveness of the Peatland ACTION Fund.  There are two key stages when you need to submit spatial data:

When you are applying for funding for your project
You must submit spatial data of the proposed work for your restoration project(s) with your application.

If you don’t have access to GPS or GIS for mapping purposes, we may be able to arrange for one of the Peatland ACTION team to carry out any mapping on your behalf.  Please email [email protected] and we’ll arrange for one of the team to get in touch with you.

Once you have completed your project
You will need to submit spatial data of the completed work along with a Final Report upon completion of your restoration project. Further information on the Final Report report will be issued with your grant offer.  


We have compiled a list of contractors as per Peatland ACTION Public Contract Prior Information Notice MAR275498.
If you are a contractor and wish to be added to the contractors list, please contact us at [email protected]

How to acknowledge our support for your project

One of the conditions of receiving funding from us is that you acknowledge our funding of your project during your Contract Period. This will be outlined in your Funding Offer. The Progress and Claim form will ask you to tell us what you have done to acknowledge our funding.

Please see our guidance on using the Peatland ACTION logo and other ways to acknowledge our funding of your project.

You can follow us on X/Twitter @PeatlandACTION, and don't forget to tag @NatureScot and use our hashtag #PeatlandACTION especially if we've funded your peatland restoration project.

Restoration guidance

Information on restoration techniques and other things to consider before you start your peatland restoration project such as breeding birds etc visit our resources web page.

How can we help?

The Peatland ACTION project team is here to help - how best to contact us.


  • [email protected]
    To speak to one of our Project Officers to get advice on your proposed Peatland ACTION project, including getting a peat depth and peatland condition survey completed.
  • [email protected]
    To submit your application, progress reports and claim forms, or to request changes to your project.  Our Funding Officers can advise on the procurement requirements of the fund.
  • [email protected]
    For support and advice on all project related data including meeting our spatial data needs.

PeatlandACTION/National Park Authorities

If your project is located within either of Scotland’s National Parks you should contact the relevant national park to discuss your proposals: 

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