LEADER Who can Apply

Eligibility for the Shetland LEADER 2014-2020 Programme is determined by the project rather than the status of the applicant.

Please note: the Shetland LEADER programme 2014-2020 is now closed for Expressions of Interest.


Applications can be made by anyone who lives in Shetland and/or wishes to undertake an activity within Shetland, provided the applicant is in a position to meet the legal requirements of a Letter of Offer. Applicants can include:

  • Community and Voluntary organisations
  • Micro Businesses (Employs fewer than 10 persons and whose annual turnover does not exceed EUR 2 million)
  • Small Businesses (Employs fewer than 50 persons and whose annual turnover does not exceed EUR 10 million)
  • Social enterprises,
  • Charities
  • Individuals (including self employed)
  • Public Bodies

Medium and large enterprises are ineligible under LEADER, a firm that is part of a larger group may need to include staff headcount and turnover data from that group too, please contact the LEADER Coordinator if you are not sure.


Projects can cover more than one Local Action Group area if taken forward as a co-operation project, projects can co-operate with other areas in Scotland, UK, Europe or beyond. Further information on Trans-national co-operation and LEADER can be found here

Applicants can apply for more than one grant from the Local Action Group, as long as they are for different projects.

A PDF copy of the Shetland Local Development Strategy can be downloaded here

Additional Support

For early stage projects, not quite ready to apply for LEADER funding, support is available to help progress ideas. The Shetland LEADER team will be able to signpost relevant support available such as workshops and business plan advice available through Business Gateway

For further information have a look at the following links;

Other Funders

The LEADER 2014-2020 Programme sits within the Scottish Rural Development Programme (SRDP), applicants should check that their project would not be eligible for one of the other grant schemes. An overview of the schemes can be found here.

There is also a comprehensive database of funding organisations in Scotland on the SCVO Funding Scotland website here.