County farms estate
Last updated: 11/01/2013
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The estate, which is managed under statutory smallholdings
provisions, currently extends to approximately
11,182.5 acres (4525.4 hectares), which
is split into 104 holdings.
The holdings are let as equipped farms, which in this context
means that the tenancy includes land, farm buildings and dwelling
house. Buildings are suitable for the farming of the holding,
although tenants may add to these with their own investment.
The tenant provides the livestock, machinery and other fixtures and
fittings necessary to run the farm.
Holdings prior to 1995 were let on a mixture of lifetime and
working life tenancies. All holdings let since 1995 are let
on fixed term farm business tenancies.
The county farms
The farms on the estate are split into several categories.
The main distinctions are between stock and dairy farms and between
starter and progressional holdings. Typically starter stock
rearing farms will be in the region of 70 to 120 acres and in the
current climate are not expected to be the tenant's sole or main
source of income. Progression stock rearing farms are usually
in excess of 150 acres.
Starter dairy farms are let with a target of 80 acres of land
and 300,000 litres of milk quota, while the progression dairy farms
have over 100 acres with 400,000 litres of milk quota. Dairy
farming is still the predominant business activity on the estate,
accounting for 56% of the holdings.
In addition to traditional stock and dairy farms the estate has
several smallholdings of about 20 acres which are let for rural
business opportunities such as equestrian and horticulture.