Land at North Moor, Moorland, Bridgwater, Somerset

Land at North Moor, Moorland, Bridgwater, Somerset

P.O.A


Quick Summary

Price P.O.A
City Bridgwater
Status New
Size (Acres) 398
Beds
Bathroom
Garden
Parking Spaces
Period

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Contact

Berwick Office
01289 304432

An unusually large area of pasture land with substantial Income

Asking price of £4,500 per acre

About 398 acres (161 Hectares)

For Sale as whole or in 2 lots

 

Summary

The Somerset Levels and Moors are of national and international environmental importance containing a rich biodiversity that supports a vast variety of plants and bird species including important feeding grounds for birds and at the same time is farmed in an environmentally friendly way. Various drainage schemes have been in place since the 11th Century. The Levels and Moors were formed from a submerged and reclaimed landscape and are largely peat based soils which are predominantly pastureland. Following extensive flooding in 2012 and then again in 2014 the Environment Agency (EA) have undertaken various measures and programmes to alleviate the problem including dredging of rivers, installation of large pumps, etc.

The traditional landscape of this area has been based around the settlements being on the areas of higher land and with the Level and Moor farmland being in the lower lying areas. Fields have predominantly been bordered by rhynes and ditches and a scattered landscape of willows which have either been traditionally coppiced or pollarded.

Location

North Moor is one of the moors of the Somerset Levels and Moors and is located approximately 6 miles south of Bridgwater and 1 mile south of the village of Moorland. Access to the M5 is approximately 3 miles to the north of the property which acts as a main arterial route to Devon and Cornwall to the south and Bristol to the north.

Land at North Moor

The present Owners have built up a significant land holding on North Moor – which is thought to be the largest private ownership on the Somerset Levels and Moors – and have managed the land in an environmentally sensitive manner under a grassland management system. The fields provide valuable moorland summer grazing from April to October/November and also hay making from the beginning of July. The hay fields are normally rotated over the land holding from year to year. In recent years the present owners have let the land on annual grazing licence agreements which will expire at the end of the 2018 grazing season. The land has been farmed under agri-environmental schemes for over 15 years and is presently in an Entry Level/Higher Level Scheme (ELS/HLS) which terminates in April 2022. The main options on the land for sale are based around:

• Maintenance of wet grassland for wintering waders and wildfowl.
• Maintenance of wet grassland for breeding waders with the main target species being lapwings.

Within the land at North Moor there is a raised water level where the lands are engineered and drained as a block so they can provide winter splash conditions. There is an enhanced raised water level supplement paid within this area. Further details of the ELS/HLS Agreement are available from the joint selling Agents.

A new ELS/HLS Agreement will need to be entered into with Natural England by the Purchaser due to the present Owner’s Agreement including land not within this sale. Natural England have indicated their support for the land to continue to be in an ELS/HLS Agreement and it is calculated that a purchaser of the whole would receive an ELS/HLS payment of about £57,000 per annum.

Income

As well as receiving the ELS/HLS payment from Natural England the Owners have received Basic Payment income and grazing income. The values of these vary due to demand for grazing and currency movements but we would anticipate a combined annual income from the Basic Payment and grazing in the range of £33,000 per annum making a total estimated income of about £90,000 per annum.

As part of the management of the land there are annual costs which includes coppicing, pollarding, ditch cleaning, gate repairs and Drainage Board rates. The estimated annual costs are in the range of £6,000 – £10,000 per annum.

The income derived from the ELS/HLS payment, BPS payment, grazing income less annual costs represents a net return of around 4.4% of the asking price of £4,500 per acre.

It is understood that it is likely that subsidies and grants will continue to be available post Brexit for land of environmental importance.

Drainage

The Environment Agency are responsible for cleaning the River Parrett and the network of main rhynes (drainage ditches), the Parrett Internal Drainage Board are responsible for clearing the viewed rhynes (secondary drainage ditches) whilst the land owners are responsible for the lesser ditches.

There are annual drainage payments made to the Parrett Internal Drainage Board, the present rates being estimated at around £870 (further details on drainage matters are available from the joint selling Agents).

Access

The Land Registry titles do not include the Droves which give access to the enclosures. Droves have been used for access for as long as the land has been farmed and the custom is that maintenance is split between the neighbouring owners. The Solicitors acting for the Vendors have prepared a full explanation of the access rights which is available from the joint selling Agents.

Lotting

The Property is offered for sale as a whole or in two lots as shown on the sale plan. The figures in “Income” above refer to the Property as a whole.

An unusually large area of pasture land with substantial Income
Asking price of £4,500 per acre
About 398 acres (161 Hectares)
For Sale as whole or in 2 lots

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