New bare land sales ‘to set benchmark’

Land at Grove Farm, Blaxhall, which is being offered up for sale through Clarke and Simpson with an

Land at Grove Farm, Blaxhall, which is being offered up for sale through Clarke and Simpson with an overall guide price of £1.55 million. - Credit: Archant

The sale of four blocks of bare land will provide “an interesting benchmark” in determining how land prices will fare later this year, a land agent suggests.

Clarke and Simpson said up until now the land market in Suffolk had been “relatively quiet” this year as it prepared for the sales launches of farmland at Snape, Lakenheath, Framlingham and Debenham, but demand was still there.

Partner Oliver Holloway said: “Land values are not at the level that they were this time last year, but having said this, we are still seeing good demand from farmers and investors despite the low commodity prices.”

One block, a 176 acre (71hectare) plot of land at Grove Farm, Blaxhall, is being sold as a whole or in three lots with a guide price of £1.55million. The arable land, described as “highly productive”, comes with irrigation and attractive meadowland.

The 149 acre plot of land at Debenham, on the market with a guide price of £1.25m, is a productive block of high yielding cereal land lying at Winston, just outside Debenham. It is for sale as a whole or in two lots.

Mr Holloway said the Blaxhall site provided potential purchasers with the chance to own a ring-fenced parcel of land for agricultural, amenity or investment purposes.

“This is a very nice block of farmland, combining an opportunity to purchase a productive block of arable land with irrigation along with meadow land situated in the old valley on the outskirts of Snape,” he said.

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“The land is light in texture, with the benefit of a good irrigation licence and enables a wide variety of crops to be gown. The grassland is all permanent pasture and consists of traditional meadowland and lies in the most picturesque setting adjacent to the River Alde.”

The land at Debenham was ideal for growing white straw crops and was currently cropped with oilseed rape and winter wheat, said Mr Holloway.

“This land consists of highly productive ‘Suffolk dirt’ and has been farmed to a high standard for a number of years, consistently producing yields in excess of four tonnes per acre,” he said.

Another 107 acre parcel of land at Home Farm, Maids Cross Hill, Lakenheath, which comes with a guide price of £350,000, is up for auction at a Clarke and Simpson sale on May 5 at Ufford Park Hotel, near Woodbridge.

“This is a very exciting and quite an unusual investment opportunity,” said Mr Holloway. “As the selling agent, you may expect me to say this, but it really does carry a very competitive guide price and which we expect to generate significant interest.”

The agent also has instructions to sell a ring-fenced block of arable land at Sweffling, near Framlingham, totalling 52.66 acres (21.31ha). The land, lying in a picturesque area in Alde valley, is described as ideal for growing combinable crops and has a guide price of £500,000. It is cropped with winter wheat for this growing season. “These land sales will provide an interesting benchmark in determining land prices going forward into the summer months of 2016,” said Mr Holloway.