Exmoor Farmers Livestock Auctions Ltd

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Horsecombe Farm, Exford




An attractive and excellent location within the Exmoor National Park, Horsecombe Farm provides an outstanding opportunity for a Residential and Commercial Livestock Holding 

In all about 244.46 Acrees

Available as a whole or in two lots 


Guide Price:

Lot 1:  £1,200,000

Lot 2:  £750,000

Introduction

Horsecombe Farm comes to the market following the vendor’s recent decision to dissolve the farming partnership, the property having been occupied by the same family for many years. The sale offers potential purchasers an excellent opportunity to acquire a residential and commercial livestock holding occupying a stunning location with exceptional views within the unspoilt countryside of the Exmoor National Park. With a traditional five bedroomed farmhouse, excellent access and 244.46 Acres, there is considerable agricultural, sporting, equestrian and amenity appeal.

Directions

Horsecombe Farm is found by taking the B3224 from Wheddon Cross towards Exford. After approximately 3.2 miles take a left had turning (unsigned) onto thorne Lane. Follow this road for about 0.5 miles where the entrance to Horsecombe Farm is found on the right hand side.

Alternatively, from Dulverton take the A396 towards Bridgetown and Wheddon Cross. On passing through Bridgetown turn left for Winsford and follow this road straight through the village of Winsford. After exiting the village continue for a further 3 miles until you reach the B3224 near Exford, turn right and after 0.75 miles turn right again, which leads onto Thorne Lane, whereupon Horsecombe Farm is found on the right after 0.5 miles.

Situation

Horsecombe Farm is found off Thorne Lane on the outskirts of Exford, Somerset. The property is reached via a private hardcore drive, which leads to the main farmhouse with ample parking. A completely rural location but with excellent access. The property is within easy reach of Exford being 2.2 miles and the villages of Winsford and Wheddon Cross are 3.8 miles and 4.1 miles respectively. Taunton is 28 miles and Tiverton 25 miles giving links to the M5 and North Devon Link Road. Intercity trains connect at both Taunton and Tiverton and international airports are found at Bristol and Exeter.

Horsecombe is situated within its own land facing south over some of the most attractive and beautiful landscape in the county, a completely rural setting but with excellent access to the surrounding area and further afield. The village of Exford, situated within easy reach, providing a parish church, village hall, post office/village stores, pubs and restaurants, whilst the nearby A396 provides easy access to Minehead, Dulverton, Bampton and Tiverton. Minehead and Dulverton offer a comprehensive range of every day shopping, banking and scholastic facilities including middle and secondary schooling. With independent schools at Taunton, Wellington, West Buckland and Tiverton.

Sporting and Recreation

Horsecombe is found in the centre of Exmoor National Park with its 267 square miles of magnificent and protected landscape, which provides unsurpassed riding and is renowned for recreational sporting opportunities being home to some of the finest hunting, fishing and shooting in the country. For the equestrian inclined there are numerous active pony clubs in the area, point-to-points, polo clubs and National Hunt steeplechase meetings held regularly at Taunton racecourse.

Course and game fishing, together with sailing, exists on a number of local reservoirs, lakes and rivers, including nearby Wimbleball Lake. The spectacular north coast provides sea fishing, surfing and sailing, as well as pretty coastal villages and towns, such as Lynton, Lynmouth, Porlock and Watchet.

Description

Horsecombe Farm is a productive and fertile livestock farm situated within the heart of Exmoor, well equipped and with an excellent array of traditional and new farm buildings. The farm has a track record of being an excellent sheep farm and has always reared a large number of lambs each year. All of the land is within easy reach, being split by a council road which offers excellent access across the whole farm.

The land is all improved permanent pasture and has been well maintained to offer excellent mowing and grazing. The land is all between 300-360 metres above sea level and has all been entered into Environmental Stewardship and used to claim Basic Payment Scheme in 2016. The main farmhouse is easily accessed and has an ample gravel parking area to the side of the property. Traditional barns are opposite the main farmhouse with the newer range of conventional farm buildings located a short distance from the property. Horsecombe Farm is a rare opportunity, having been retained within the same farming family for many years, extending in total to about 244.46 Acres (98.92 Ha).

Method of Sale

The property is offered for sale by Private Treaty as a whole or in two lots, as described within these sale particulars:

Lot 1 – The Farmhouse, Farm Buildings and Land extending to about 104.21 Acres

The Farmhouse

An attractive traditional farmhouse occupying an exceptional south facing position within the holding and affording spacious character accommodation that has been kept at a high standard.

The accommodation is arranged over three floors as follows:

Ground Floor

Entrance Reception with part glazed door leading past a…

Utility Room containing a separate WC and storage cupboard, larder and part glazed door to outside.

Farmhouse Kitchen, down to the same tiled floor as the utility, with an expanse of fitted wooden units under a granite effect worktop with wall mounted cabinets. An oil fired Rayburn stove heats the room and hot water and is sat under a feature beam. A full length fitted cupboard offers extra storage space beside the Rayburn.

The kitchen is split by its 'L' shape with part containing a dining area with fitted corner bench and the second part a lounge area with half height wooden wall panels which together provide a comfortable family kitchen. The kitchen offers a light and airy workspace with double glazed windows to three sides.

A door leads from the rear of the kitchen to an Inner Hallway with stairs to the first floor and an understairs cupboard.

Sitting Room contains an open fireplace creating a focal point to the room. Double patio doors open to a gravel area which is part enclosed by a wall to the lawned garden.

Dining Room has a feature log burning stove set in a brick fireplace which has built in alcove display shelves on both sides. Double glazed windows offer double aspect views to the south and rear of the property.

First Floor

Landing with Airing Cupboard.

Bedroom 1 a south facing double room enjoying views over the garden and adjacent farmland, with double glazed windows and an ornamental fireplace.

Bedroom 2 also south facing with double glazed windows.

Bedroom 3 a single room with double glazed window and views over the garden.

Bathroom containing a bath in tiled surround with shower over. Wash hand basin and window to the north.

Separate WC adjacent to the bathroom.

Second Floor

Large Landing contains the water tank for the property in a built in box.

Bedroom 4 double room with views to the west and built in wardrobe

Bedroom 5 double room with views to the east

Outside

Outside the property a concrete path leads to the side of the property which is enclosed by a stone wall which retains the lawns set above the level of the property on the east side. At the rear of the property a gravel path continues around to the front with seating areas offering excellent views. At the back also a small lean too Tool Shed is found of stone construction under slate.

The lawns are set on three sides of the main farmhouse with areas of shrubs. Opposite the farmhouse is a Workshop of concrete block construction under a corrugated sheet roof with an open fronted rear part containing a fuel tank and tool shed. Adjacent to this is a large Brick Barn under a corrugated sheet roof which was previously used for stabling. The barn has a feed store over and a woodshed built into one side. To the rear of the barn is a Double Garage of concrete block construction under corrugated sheets built as a lean too. Beyond this is a versatile concrete yard and three redundant loose boxes.

The Farm Buildings

A large selection of farm buildings are found at Horsecombe and these include a four bay open fronted steel framed galvanised iron curved roof Storage Shed, located in the first field adjacent to the drive. The main yard is found a short distance to the rear of the property and this comprises a steel portal framed four bay Shed with lean-to on both sides with one lean-to being three bays. This is split by a concrete block wall into one third and two thirds. The shed is under a galvanised sheet roof and has the same on three quarters of the sides with the remainder being of concrete block wall construction. The one third top lean-to contains a concrete floor across the whole and contains six calving boxes on each side of the lean-to, each with water bowl and manger along the full length of the box. This part of the lean-to is accessed via a sliding door and opens to a concrete yard that has a walled boundary.

A 2000 built C. Hodgson Sheep/Cattle Building, which was first used for lambing in 2001, steel framed under a steel sheet roof. This shed is made up in total of 195' x 84' (59.44m x 25.60m) in three parts, the initial 90' is made up of 6 bays of 15' with 12' supporting uprights. A second part of 45' is left as clear span across the entire width of the shed and a final third part of the shed being 60', again of 15' bays with 12' uprights. This is an extremely versatile building which has been utilised for sheep housing and management currently and could easily be used for cattle. The building has Yorkshire Boarding along the entire southwest side of the building and gale breaker around the sides with further windbreak on the southwest side extending 30' past the front of the building.

Away from the main farmyard the remnants of a four bay concrete portal framed shed with a lean-to on both sides is found just off the road which splits the farm and accessed by double gates into a hardcore yard which fronts the building and from which there is access into the adjacent field. There is electricity in all of the farm buildings at Horsecombe.

The Land

Horsecombe is a productive grass farm with an excellent reputation for producing a quality flock of sheep, although the holding could also easily be utilised for cattle rearing. The farm as a whole has previously been used to carry in the region of 750 ewes and approximately 130 ewe hoggs. The land has the benefit of water across the whole farm which rises from a private spring found on Lot 2. This supply is then pumped by a ram and distributed across the remainder of the holding. A further spring is situated on the Horsecombe Farm side which is used as a back-up and feeds to the house and buildings.

It is a holding which possesses considerable agricultural productivity as well as sporting, amenity and conservation appeal. The land associated with Lot 1 is located to the south side of Thorne Lane, contained within a ring fence extending to about 104.21 Acres (42.17 Ha), as shown shaded pink on the identification plan.

Lot 2 – Pasture Land extending to about 140.25 Acres

This comprises a superb block of productive pasture enjoying extensive road frontage and access from Thorne Lane to the south and the B3224 Exford to Wheddon Cross road which forms the northern boundary. The majority of the land enjoys a gentle southerly aspect, ideal for livestock grazing and/or fodder production. Situated upon this land is a useful four bay Pole Barn with a concrete yard and earth floors, although this building is now starting to fall into some disrepair.

In total, Lot 2 extends to about 140.24 Acres (56.75 Ha) as shown shaded green on the identification plan.

General Remarks

Tenure and Possession

The property is of freehold tenure with the benefit of vacant possession of all parts, subject to any rights of holdover which may be required, depending upon the date of completion.

Services

Horsecombe Farm has the benefit of private water and drainage with a mains electricity supply, telephone and internet connection. In the event of the property being sold in lots adequate provision will need to be made for the appropriate easements and rights for services.

Outgoings

These are believed to comprise of local Council Tax, on Horsecombe Farmhouse - Band E, together with the usual service and environmental charges where applicable.

Fixtures and Fittings

All fixtures and fittings, unless specifically referred to within these sale particulars are otherwise expressly excluded from the sale of the freehold and will be removed by the vendors or their agents prior to completion.

Basic Payment Scheme

The land has been registered in 2016 for Basic Payment Scheme and previously had been used to claim Single Farm Payment. Up to date Rural Land Registry maps are available if required. Basic payment entitlements for the relevant area of land will be included in the sale. The vendors agree to use their best endeavours to transfer the entitlements to the Purchaser(s) subject to receiving written instructions. On request of this transfer the Purchaser(s) will be responsible for the Vendors Agents reasonable costs incurred in completing the relevant transfer documents.

Designations

The land has been entered into a 10 year Environmental Stewardship agreement (Agreement No. AG00520472) with Natural England which commenced on the 1st May 2014. The land currently receives payments under the Uplands Entry Level Stewardship schemes totalling approximately £6,000 per annum.

Prospective purchasers should satisfy themselves as to the contents and obligations of the above agreement and will covenant to farm in accordance with the management prescriptions. Copies of the Environmental Stewardship agreement are available from the agents upon request.

Sporting and Hunting Rights

The shooting rights across the property are in hand and to be included in the sale. The hunting rights across the property are owned by the Badgworthy Land Company.

Rights of Way, Easements, Wayleaves, Etc.

A bridlepath and public footpath cross the land at Horsecombe Farm. The property is offered for sale subject to and with the benefit of all matters contained in or referred to in the property charges register of the registered title together with all public and private rights of way, wayleaves, easements and other rights of way whether these are specifically referred to or not.

Town and Country Planning

The current use of the farm buildings is agricultural although there may be scope for prospective purchasers to consider alternative uses within the farm buildings, subject to obtaining the necessary planning consent from Exmoor National Park Authority.

Live and Deadstock Sale

The right is reserved to hold a sale by auction on the premises of the live and dead farming stock prior to the date of completion.

Ingoing Valuation

In addition to the purchase price for the property, the Purchaser(s) may be required to take over and pay for the items detailed below by way of an ingoing valuation:-

  • Any bagged or wrapped silage, hay and straw at market value.
  • Clamped silage at consuming value.
  • Any consumable stores, fertilisers, fuel, oils and other stores at cost price.

The valuation will be carried out by the Vendors Agents whose decision shall be final and binding on behalf of the Vendors and Purchaser(s). All valuation monies shall be liable at the time of completion, together with the Valuers fees and expenses which will be borne equally by the parties. Any unpaid sums following completion shall incur interest at the contract rate until settled.

The Purchaser(s) will have the option to appoint their own Valuer. This option shall be exercised on the signing of the sale contract. In the event of such an option being exercised and in the event of the Valuers failing to agree the valuation by the date of completion, the valuation will be settled by an Arbitrator to be appointed by the President for the time being of the Central Association of Agricultural Valuers.

Local Authorities

Somerset County Council, County Hall, Taunton, Somerset TA1 4DY. Tel: 0300 123 2224.

Exmoor National Park Authority, Exmoor House, Dulverton, Somerset, TA22 9HL. Tel: 01398 323665.

West Somerset Council, West Somerset House, Killick Way, Williton, Taunton, Somerset TA4 4QA. Tel: 01643 703704.

Important Notice

All persons wishing to view the property do so entirely at their own risk. Neither the Vendors or their Agents will be held liable for any damage or injury that may occur when interested parties are visiting the property.

Greenslade Taylor Hunt and Exmoor Farmers Livestock Auctions Ltd. for themselves and for the Vendors of the property whose agents they are give notice that:-

  • these particulars are set out as a general outline only for the guidance of intending purchasers and do not constitute, nor constitute part of, an offer or contract. Prospective purchasers should seek their own professional advice.

  • all descriptions, dimensions, areas, reference to condition, necessary permissions for use and occupation, and all other details are given in good faith and are believed to be correct. Any intending purchasers should not rely on them as statements or representations of fact but must satisfy themselves by inspection or otherwise as to the correctness of each of them.

  • no responsibility can be accepted for any expenses incurred by any intending purchasers inspecting properties that have been sold, let or withdrawn.

  • no person in the employment of Greenslade Taylor Hunt or Exmoor Farmers Livestock Auctions Ltd. has any authority to make or give any representation or warranty whatsoever in relation to the property or the particulars.

Measurements and Other Information

All measurements are approximate. The field numbers and areas shown on the attached plan are based on the Ordnance Survey and are for identification purposes only. They do not necessarily correspond either with the National Grid plan numbers or with those to be produced on the Rural Land Register.

Whilst we endeavour to make our sales particulars as accurate and reliable as possible, if there are any point which is of particular importance to you please contact the office, especially if you are contemplating travelling some distance to view the property. We have not tested any of the equipment, appliances, central heating or services