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Sir Benjamin Slade to sell large private land holding on the Somerset Levels

Sir Ben Slade of Maunsel House near Taunton in Somerset has announced the sale of his land holding on the Somerset Levels and Moors. This is believed to be the largest private holding on the Somerset Levels and Moors extending to about 400 acres. The land has been farmed in an environmentally focussed manner for many years and is of international environmental importance due to its rich variety of plant and birdlife.

Sir Ben says “I have decided to offer this land to sell in order to be able to invest yet further in Maunsel House and Woodlands Castle which are run as vibrant wedding and event venues.”

The Somerset Levels were flooded in 2012 and again in 2014 and since then the Environment Agency have invested heavily in the infrastructure and dredging in order to protect this important ecological area. This includes the installation of massive pumps to enable control of the water levels. Part of the land for sale includes a raised water level area which provides habitat for breeding and wintering wading birds and in particular Lapwings.

There is an Agreement with Natural England until 2022 which is estimated to yield about £57,000 per annum in addition to the normal Basic Payment and grazing income. The total income is estimated to show a net return in the region of 4.4 % on the asking price of £4,500 per acre. The Land could be suitable for those seeking a qualifying investment for Roll Over relief from Capital Gains Tax or those wanting 100% Inheritance Tax relief.

Andrew Hamilton of Edwin Thompson who has managed the land for the last 8 years says “This is a unique opportunity to purchase a sizeable area of farmland in an important ecological area that is likely to continue to be supported post Brexit.”

Andrew Macpherson of joint agents CKD says “A normal agricultural investment can be expected to yield between 1% and 2%. This is a high yielding block of land with minimum outgoings that should show a net return in excess of 4.4 % and would currently benefit from significant  tax reliefs. I expect interest from farmers, investors and conservationists “

Further information from the joint selling Agents:

Andrew Hamilton of Edwin Thompson 01289 304432

Andrew Macpherson of CKD Property Advisors 020 709 1944

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