Keen, adaptable and hard-working tenants are being sought to take on business tenancies at four county farms across Norfolk.

Ranging from 75-437 acres, Norfolk County Farms says the five-year lettings offer opportunities for new starters and established growers looking to scale up.

The launches come hot on the heels of applications opening for four tenancies across Norfolk’s neighbouring county of Cambridgeshire.

See also: The benefits of becoming a council farm tenant

Duncan Slade, rural estates surveyor at Norfolk County Farms, said: “There are opportunities here for a new entrant, someone looking for the next rung on the ladder or those ready to go to the next level with a commercial-sized farm holding.”

Mr Slade said the tender process would have “quite a strict” criteria.

“We are seeking tenants who can demonstrate that they are capable and the best able to take on the farm and make it work,” he told Farmers Weekly.

“Whoever is successful will need to be keen, enterprising, adaptable and hard-working to tackle the huge changes that we are on the cusp of seeing in the agricultural industry.”

See also: What it’s like to be a first-time farm tenant

New entrants and those with limited experience of business planning can attend a training course organised by the authority in February.

What the council wants from applicants and how to apply

  • Business name

  • Business summary

  • Aims and objectives
  • Financial summary
  • Management strategy
  • Marketing and sales strategy
  • Targets and timescales

  • Strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats analysis

  • Business strapline

  • 200-word elevator pitch (a brief persuasive statement about the applicant)

See full particulars and viewing dates at www.norfolk.gov.uk/countyfarms

Applications close Friday 9 March.

Bank House Farm 

A field at Bank House Farm

Deep, stoneless Grade 2 clay soils lend the 437 acres at Bank House to a sugar beet, cereals and vegetable rotation.

The residing tenant has winter wheat, sugar beet and oilseed rape in the ground, with some small parcels of grass.

Located on the Stow and Marshland Estate, seven miles from Downham Market, the land surrounds the holding where a 600t grain store and general purpose building is located.

There is a farm office and a house could be included by negotiation.

Great Crow Farm 

Sheds at Great Crow Farm

Great Crow is about to receive significant investment from Norfolk County Council with the conversion of an old building to create a dwelling, plus a new 600t grain store.

There is 200t on on-floor storage, plus an implement shed. 

The holding has 311 acres of arable land which is growing maize, winter and spring barley, wheat and sugar beet on Grade 3 and Grade 2 soils near Fakenham.

NCC Farm

Sheds at NCC Farm

Located on the Welney Farms Estate, the smallest of the four offerings from Norfolk County Council has 75 acres of high-quality Grade 1 soils.

Winter wheat, sugar beet and potatoes are grown across the acreage which is equipped with three general purpose buildings in the yard.

A three-bedroom bungalow could be replaced with another house which will be included in the farm business tenancy.

Coxhill Farm

A field at Coxhill Farm

Sugar beet, cereals and vegetables have been grown across the 219 ring-fenced acreage which comprises entirely Grade 1 soils.

There is 550t of grain storage split across two steel-framed sheds, with a lean-to offering extra general storage space.

A three-bedroom house is included on the holding, which is next to the village of Lingwood, 10 miles from Norwich.