Major south-east arable farm to test the market

A rare opportunity to acquire a sound commercial arable farm ing the south-east of England is about to come to the market with agent George Webb Finn.

The 950-acre Vine Hall Estate lies in rolling, Wealden countryside on the edge of a village near Ashford and includes a Grade II listed farmhouse, a cottage, and a range of buildings with modern grain storage for about 1800 tonnes.

Its arable land has been contract farmed by a local farmer. There is a period timber barn and office garage block forming part of the buildings in Lot 1 which have potential for alternative uses subject to obtaining the necessary consents.

Vine Hall

George Webb Finn is marketing the estate as a whole (£5.55m) or in three lots, valuing the land at around £5200. The firm’s Robert Dixon expects keen interest from local farmers as well as the investment and amenity buyers. “Very rarely does an estate of this size come up in Kent,” he said.

The same firm is also about to market 425 acres of grazing marsh in north Kent, plus 30 acres of common rights, which are likely to catch the eye of sporting and conservation buyers.

However, some farms in east Kent are proving slow to sell despite the undersupplied market. Over the border in Sussex, Charles Clark & Co was “a little disappointed” when, after 13 offers were made for all or part of the 230 acres of bare land at Owlsbury Farm, Crowborough, it went as a whole for an average £3500/acre.

Although largely cleared woodland, it had been growing arable crops. It is understood that the new owner, an agricultural investment company, may be about to remarket it.