Record €10m-plus Tipp sale

CRUISING on the Shannon last week, auctioneer Paddy Jordan was enjoying time off after another record-breaking summer farm sale.

Scorduff Farm, at Brosna, Co Tipperary made just over €10 million, when it sold immediately after auction.

The property of Sean and Geraldine O’Meara, the farm is described by Mr Jordan as being in the top 10% in the country.

Many contracts were sent out before the auction, the agent said, but there was little chance for some bidders on the day. “It went so quick a lot of bidders were blown out early, and there were only two left in the end, both of whom were solicitors.”

The farm opened at e6m, but flew up to €9.5m almost immediately, he said, at which stage there was an adjournment for a ‘chat’ before bidding resumed, taking the property to €10m.

It was withdrawn from the auction at that stage, but was sold afterwards for an undisclosed sum, which is believed to be of €10.2 to €10.3m.

The purchaser was a Portlaoise solicitor, said Mr Jordan. He wouldn’t confirm the identity of the purchaser as the Gowing family, however, the word is out that the family, whose son Michael was the Teagasc Student of the Year for 1999 and the FBD Farmer of the Future in 2003, was the purchaser. The Gowings are leading dairy farmers, situated on the perimeter of Portlaoise, so the sale of land there for development could play a role in their north Tipperary acquisition.

A walk-in job for the buyer, the sale will close in October, says Mr Jordan. Discussions will continue on the sale of the livestock and machinery, or there could be a dispersal auction before closure.

Sean and Geraldine O’Meara will move to a drystock farm they’ve purchased not too far away, in Shinrone, and will build a new house there. The 275 acre farm they are selling is ideally set up for dairying, said Sean, with state-of-the-art equipment and a milk quota of 262,500 gallons. The farm is well known throughout the country, having hosted a number of Teagasc, Irish Grassland Association and Macra na Feirme open days.

Sean O’Meara’s sister, Kathleen, is a Labour Party senator, and is a triplet, as well as the identical twin of RTE reporter Aileen O’Meara.

The farm has been in the family for almost 100 years.

The property has two residences: the first is a large, modern bungalow of 2,500 square feet and the second, the original farmhouse, has 2,000 square feet of space.

Scorduff Farm is four miles from Roscrea, off the Birr road, and is bounded by the river Brosna.

Jordan Town and Country Estate Agents, also sold this year’s record-holding farm, Pass House Farm at Portlaoise for €17.2m, from a standing start of €5m.

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