EDINBURGH FIRM Brodies is selling the first good-sized Scottish farm to be marketed publicly this year.

Hillend at Reston in Berwickshire is being sold following the decision of its owners to relocate, and the firm”s James Carnegy said it made sense to launch the 470-acre mixed unit earlier than would be considered usual in Scotland.

“There is demand out there, but there is also a backlog of farms because of single farm payment issues. It is difficult to know how many people will actually decide to sell in 2005 but there will definitely be more than last year so we decided it was best to go early.”

Entitlement to single farm payment is included in the 1.38m guide and Mr Carnegy said there had already been a lot of interest from farmers, both English and Scottish, as well as lifestyle buyers.

“It is a lovely farm in good heart with an excellent combination of residential and commercial assets. It also has very high amenity and is within commuting distance of Edinburgh.

” There is a five-bedroom house and two cottages are also available separately.

Launching out of season doesn”t seem to have had a detrimental impact on two other farms in the Scottish Borders that were put up for sale at the end of last year.

James Denne of Knight Frank”s Lauder office said there had been strong demand for the 1343-acre Greenknowe Estate, near Kelso, from all over the UK and he was now negotiating a sale after setting a closing date of offers for Jan 20. “We did about 30 viewings.

” However, he said it helped that the farm was being sold with entitlement to the SFP. “People saw that as quite important, especially those from England who wouldn”t be able to bring any entitlement with them.

” Hundalee, a 758-acre mixed unit at Jedburgh, also attracted lots of interest according to Hugh Jones of selling agent Edwin Thompson, but he admitted that its lack of SFP entitlement had put off some people. “It is a large block of land to be short of entitlement.

” This made it more likely the farm would be split, added Mr Jones, who said he had received an offer for about half of it already and was hoping to wrap up the rest within the next few weeks.