8 January 2002
Farm building scheme goes on-line

By Tom Allen-Stevens

AN on-line service gives farmers with redundant buildings access to a range of free advice and marketing services.

The service, www.valueinstore.co.uk, has been set up by Lincoln and Newark chartered surveyors Hodgson Elkington with North Kesteven District Council.

The scheme aims to help farmers convert redundant or under used farm buildings and transform them into valuable commercial enterprises.

At the heart of the scheme lies a database of redundant farm buildings that can be promoted to businesses looking for new floorspace or storage space.

The site also contains advice for farmers on planning, grant aid applications, conversion design and rates.

“It is frequently possible to demonstrate an excellent return on capital on conversion cost,” said Christ Hodgson, partner at Hodgson Elkington.

“In many cases additional help can be sought in the form of grant aid.”

“Farm buildings constitute a significant part of a farmers asset stock,” added Alan Gray, North Kesteven District Councils Economic Development Officer.

“Our scheme is designed to help the farmer breath new life into [redundant] buildings and to release valuable income.”

Anyone interested should contact the Councils Economic Development Unit.

A free survey is then carried out by Hodgson Elkington to evaluate the building for possible commercial and financial viability.

Once included on the Councils database, the details are advertised to potential business clients free of charge until such time as they are successfully let.

Farmers can also choose to market the building in which ever way they see fit, said the scheme backers, and the Council will also promote its availability.

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