8 March 2002

Merials move frees two units

A RESTRUCTURING at Merial Animal Health, one of the UKs largest farm drug suppliers, means two adjoining Herts units are now on the market.

Elbow Lane Farm and Highfield Farm, three miles from Hertford, were used by the company for research purposes and, as a result, have an extremely diverse range of buildings, including a crematorium and laboratory, according to Stuart Harris of selling agent Carter Jonas.

"They are way above specification for a livestock farm, but are not so specialised they couldnt be used for other things."

The two farms are available separately but have been run as one holding by Merial. Elbow Lane, with 125 acres of pasture, is the larger of the two and features a four-bedroomed house and a 2.25m gallon reservoir, as well as an extensive range of buildings. Guide price is £1m.

Highfield comes with only 20 acres, but has some of the more specialist buildings that Mr Harris reckons could offer some good commercial opportunities. Along with a three-bedroomed 1930s farmhouse the property is valued at £900,000.

Most of the land belonging to the two farms is IACS-registered, although the agent says it would need to be reregistered if the farms are split. Because almost 20 people have already been employed at the site, getting planning consent for a new business enterprise could be easier than usual, he adds. &#42