FAMILY CONNECTION BRINGS SURPRISE IN NORTHUMBRIA By Andrew Shirley

 A SCOTTISH LANDOWNER is swapping his large commercial farm in the Borders for a spectacular Northumbrian estate.

James Denne of Knight Frank’s Lauder office, who is handling the sale of the 1343-acre Greenknowe Estate at Gordon, near Kelso, also acted for the unnamed vendor in the recent purchase of the 1500-acre Pallinsburn Estate at Cornhill-on-Tweed, which was marketed by joint agents Sale & Partners and CKD Kennedy Macpherson.

Given the paucity of this year’s property market in Scotland and the north of England, the prospect of such a neat deal must have seemed unlikely, and Mr Denne said even his client had no idea he would be selling until he was told Pallinsburn was available in September.

“He never anticipated that he would be leaving after the amount of work he had put into Greenknowe. But Pallinsburn is in a part of the world that he likes very much and where he has family connections and it is also close enough to allow him to stay in touch with his friends in Scotland,” said Mr Denne

 In exchange for a predominantly arable estate with 1700t of grain storage, which is valued at £3.6m and comes with a six-bedroom period farmhouse, eight cottages and a farm manager”s bungalow, the owner of Greenknowe will be moving into a nine-bedroom Jacobean-style residence surrounded by parkland and impressive views.

Including 12 other houses, a commercial nursery and a 196-acre farm let under a traditional tenancy, Pallinsburn was guided at £5.75m.

Mr Denne said he expected plenty of interest in Greenknowe due to the dearth of farms available in Scotland.

 “Over the past year it has been like finding hens” teeth. Demand is quite strong and there was a lot of interest in another 600-acre farm for sale in the area. People still want to farm.”

Unlike most of the other farms sold north of the border this year, Mr Denne said all entitlement to the historic single farm payment would be transferred with the sale.

The estate”s conservation and sporting potential has also been maximised and includes a seven-day lowland driven shoot, which included a shootable surplus of 50 Grey partridges this year.