Lower Deans Farm is a substantial mixed farm set in an outstanding location on the escarpment of the North Downs with commanding views over the Weald of Kent. The farm is conveniently located with easy access to the A20 and M20 Junction 8, some 4 miles to the west. Ashford, with its fast mainline rail connection in approximately 38 minutes to St Pancras, is 14 miles distant.
The sale of Lower Deans Farm presents an increasingly rare opportunity to purchase a complete residential farm including significant acreages of arable and pasture land, in a secluded yet accessible location on the escarpment of the North Downs in Kent. The main farm lies within a ring fenced block of land offering considerable privacy to the main farmstead which is located at the end of a no-through road. The outlying blocks of land are only a short distance away and comprise large, easily worked arable fields, some with woodland adjoining offering sporting and conservation opportunities.
The farm comprises mainly arable and pasture land with blocks of mature coppice, conifer and broadleaf woodland and extends in all to some 528.19 acres (213.75 hectares) and includes an attractive Grade II Listed five bedroom farmhouse, a pair of Grade II Listed cottages and 30,000 sq ft of modern farm buildings, a range of traditional buildings and two telecom masts with rental income of £14,890 per annum.
LOT 1 - LOWER DEANS FARM
Lower Deans Farm is located central to a ring fenced block of land at the end of Deans Hill, a no through road. The land in 4 parcels extends to 365 acres, is currently cropped as follows:
Winter Wheat - 89.03 acres (36.02 hectares)
Winter Barley - 100.33 acres (40.60 hectares)
Mixed Broadleaf, Conifer and Coppice Woodland - 45.76 acres (18.51 hectares)
Permanent Grass - 125.21 acres (50.67 hectares)
There are outstanding views from the farmstead through valleys to the south and south-west which provide far reaching vistas across the Weald of Kent.
The farmhouse is timber framed and Grade II listed with 15th Century origins and later additions presenting mixed elevations of brick, render, tile hanging and exposed timbers with plastered infilling, right and left jetted bays, set with predominantly timber framed multi paned casement windows, two dormer windows, beneath a pitched and hipped tiled roof with catslide to rear.
The period accommodation is arranged over two floors with many period features including attractive wooden linen fold panelling to the hall, stairs and sitting room, exposed beams and timbers, curved braces and detailed rose carvings. Within the panelled sitting room is a magnificent fireplace housing woodburning stove with carvings, WC and the date 1586, with storage cupboards to either side and the drawing room has a tiled open fireplace with timbers to ceiling and both rooms enjoy a pleasant outlook across the front garden. Situated in the dining room is an oil fired Rayburn (untested) providing immediate heat, cooking facility and central heating. A kitchen has basic fittings with modern base and eye level cupboards and drawers with space and electric point for cooker and oak door to front. A study situated to the rear of the property has an open fireplace, a wooden block floor and enjoys a double aspect to side and rear. Arranged over the first floor, split level landing with minstrel’s gallery are five bedrooms, all served by a bathroom with a coloured suite.
An expanse of lawn runs out to the front of the property with established trees including a magnificent monkey puzzle. To the rear is a part walled concrete yard The farmhouse would benefit from general updating and modernisation.
Energy Efficiency Rating: F
Nos 1 and 2 Lower Deans Cottages
A pair of Grade II Listed semi-detached cottages with origins understood to date back to circa early 1600s with alterations in the 1900s and a more recent addition to No.2, presenting mixed elevations of brick, tile hanging, rendering and white weather boarding, set with predominantly metal framed casement windows beneath a pitched hipped and tiled roof. The cottages would benefit from general updating and modernisation.
No 1 Lower Deans Cottage
The accommodation comprises; modern galley kitchen with fitted cupboards, single bowl stainless steel sink unit, space for electric cooker, space and plumbing for washing machine. Sitting room with open fireplace and an under stairs cupboard with aspect to front overlooking the garden. A separate dining room with fireplace housing solid fuel Rayburn (untested) has a double aspect overlooking the garden. A bathroom is fitted with a modern white suite incorporating freestanding roll top bath with mixer tap. A first floor landing provides access to two double bedrooms both enjoying fine rural views. Energy Efficiency Rating: F
No 2 Lower Deans Cottage
The accommodation comprises; rear entrance hall/utility room. A bathroom is fitted with a dated white suite including enamelled bath with mixer tap and shower attachment. The sitting room has a fireplace housing a wood burning stove, aspect to front with outlook across garden. The dining room has a fireplace housing a solid fuel Rayburn (untested) providing immediate heat and cooking facility, useful understairs storage cupboard. The study enjoys a double aspect with pleasant outlook across garden and fields beyond. A kitchen is fitted with base and eye level cupboards and drawers with a double aspect. From the first floor landing access to two double bedrooms, bedroom one with built in wardrobe both rooms enjoying far reaching rural views. Energy Efficiency Rating: F
The cottages are set in lawned gardens run to three sides bordered by neatly clipped hedging, both have detached brick and sectional concrete single garages.
There are two telecommunication masts located within the main farmyard.
Mast 1 is an EE telecom mast let to Arqiva Ltd for a period of 10 years from 9 February 2017 and the current rent passing is £8,967 per annum with rent reviews due 26/04/19 and every third anniversary after.
Mast 2 is a radio mast for Kent Police with the current licence agreement, which originated in October 2001, extended to 28 September 2022 and the current rent passing is £5,923.85 per annum with 3-yearly rent reviews.
Lower Deans Farm Buildings
The farmyard is located to the immediate south of the farmhouse and includes a range of modern and traditional farm buildings around an open yard:
Garage (36 sq metres) of block construction under a metal sheeted roof
General Store (24 sq metres)
Traditional Timber Barn (111 sq metres ground floor): A 5 Bay timber frame barn with weatherboard cladding under a slate roof with a part brick/ragstone render. Part of the building has a mezzanine above (47 sq metres) and a lean-to (28 sq metres).
The Calf Pens (32 sq metres) of block construction under a monopitch fibre cement roof
The Chemical Spray Shed
The Hay Barn and Former Livestock Yards (1,891 sq metres). A substantial twin span 10 bay concrete portal framed building, three-quarter clad with corrugated fibre cement sheeting and block walls with concrete floor and alleyway.
The Old Dairy (201 sq metres) of traditional brick construction under a plain tile roof with attached lean-to.
The Machinery Store (577 sq metres) a 6 bay concrete portal frame, fully enclosed shed with corrugated fibre cement sheeting and elevations and roller shutter door and concrete floor.
The traditional buildings may have potential for non-agricultural use subject to obtaining any necessary Planning Permissions.
The farmland and woodland extends to 366 acres (148.11 hectares) and is located in four blocks in close proximity to the main farmstead.
The main ring fenced block includes a number of level arable and pasture fields on the northern side with land falling away to a deep valley to the south and south-west where there are commanding views. The three outlying parcels to the north-east have good frontage to a network of country lanes and comprise mainly arable farmland in easy working fields suitable for modern farm machinery.
Soilscape identifies the land as being mainly slightly acid loamy and clay soils with some of the pasture land located on the escarpment in shallow lime rich soils over chalk or limestone. It is mainly classified as Grade III on the DEFRA Agricultural Land Classification.
LOT 2 - Flint Barn Land and Bramble and Broomy Lees Wood ME17 2EN
82.65 acres (33.44 hectares) of arable and woodland.
Flint Barn Land is located on the northern side of Flint Lane in a shallow valley with views to the north. The land comprises some 82.65 acres (33.44 hectares) with 36.47 acres (14.75 hectares) of Grade III arable land, currently cropped with winter wheat and Bramble and Broomy Lees Wood extending to some 46.18 acres (18.68 hectares). The woodland is mainly managed Chestnut coppice land and mixed broadleaf woodland parcels offering good sporting potential.
LOT 3 - Green Barn Land ME17 1NX
45.99 acres (18.61 hectares) of arable farmland.
Located in the hamlet of Ringlestone, some 1.5 miles north of the main farmstead, this ring fenced block of arable land extends to some 45.99 acres (18.61 hectares) currently cropped to winter wheat. The land is classified on the DEFRA Agricultural Land Classification as Grade II.
LOT 4 - Jessops ME17 1NX
34.55 acres (13.98 hectares) of arable farmland
Located to the immediate south of Lot 3 with dual road frontage, this level block of Grade II arable land extends to some 34.55 acres (13.98 hectares) and is currently cropped to winter barley.
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