The Park Hotel in Dungarvan is the venue on April 2 for a public auction of 68.5 acres of farmland located in and around the Co Waterford villages of Leamybrien and Stradbally.
According to the auctioneers, there is likely to be a strong turnout for this event, as it’s quite rare that such a significant holding comes onto the market in this part of the world, and the auction is sure to add further interest in the sale.
As Margaret Harty of the Dungarvan-based Harty & Co Auctioneers explains, the farm comes in three separate parcels of land.
“We have a 54-acre roadside farm in the townland of Kilminion, Stradbally, first of all,” says Margaret.
“This would be just off the main coast road at Stradbally. The second property is part of the same estate, and that’s a 14.5 acre parcel of land in the village of Leamybrien. That bounds the N25 (main Cork-Waterford-Wexford road).”
Of the 14.5 acres in Leamybrien, approximately five acres of it are zoned for residential development.
This may very well have an important bearing on the price achieved at the auction, but it will depend on whether or not a speculative buyer turns up on the day.
These days, there is much talk around ‘hope value’ and defining speculation land and agricultural land for the future, but speculators have not been too conspicuous in recent years.
“You never know in this day and age whether that makes any huge difference in terms of the value,” says Margaret, “but there is the potential there.”
The third part of this trinity of Waterford lands is a 4.25 acre field which is also located adjacent to Leamybrien. It’s a piece of prime grassland with road frontage on two sides.
“The 54-acre block is currently in permanent pasture,” says Margaret. “It has all been tilled at various stages.
“The land was rented for the last number of years, since the owner died. It’s a really good opportunity to get a nice block of land together. It’s nice, solid, dry land, laid out in five or six fields.”
There is a natural water supply, according to the selling agent, who adds that the property has been laid down in grass for about five years.
The holding has road frontage on two sides. The stretch that adjoins the main road is short, and not as accessible as the longer and much more convenient frontage onto the side road.
“If a dairy farmer was purchasing it, it would need paddocking, and that kind of attention, but otherwise it’s very good, easily managed land.”
Interest has been gathering pace in recent days, according to the agents, who say that a number of enquiries have been forthcoming, with people looking for maps and details. “You never know, when it comes to a public auction, until the day itself,” says Margaret, “but it’s a good and rare opportunity for someone to purchase land here, either for extending an existing holding or for a main enterprise.”
The 14.5-acre parcel is described by Margaret as “good, level land. It’s in two fields of permanent pasture. It’s a nice-sized piece of land and there would be a lot of potential customers for something of that size within the locality, including some people who are looking at the development potential in it.”
The guide price for the main block is in the region of €10,000 to €11,000 per acre. For the 14.5-acre and the four-acre blocks, the guide is a little higher, at €11,000 to €12,000 per acre.
The smaller parcels hold the most potential to tip the scales somewhat, but the one thing that you can predict about a public auction is that there will be some surprises in store. All will be revealed at 2:30pm on April 2.