Farm Ireland

Friday 24 November 2017

A 'hot contest' expected for Rebel holding

Jim O'Brien

Jim O'Brien

There is a confidence in Cork people that is the envy of the country. It is said that a Corkman with an inferiority complex is one who believes that other places in the world are the equal of the Rebel County.

But there are times when you have to appreciate our southern neighbours with their lingering impression that they are genuinely our superiors.

You certainly have to take your hat off to them on a day when they show you a 214ac farm located 10 minutes from the city by the Lee and 10 minutes from Kinsale, the food capital of Ireland.

Coolkirky farm at Riverstick is a substantial residential farm that has a mix of tillage, grazing and forestry. It is being sold by private treaty and comes with a guide price of €1.7m.

Located 0.75 miles off the R600 Cork to Kinsale road, Coolkirky was originally centred around the substantial Coolkirky House, a Georgian mansion that burned to the ground about 20 years ago. The house was replaced by a modest three bedroom bungalow built in the aftermath of the fire.

Ernest Forde of joint selling agents Hodnett Forde believes this farm has something for a wide range of customers, but he insists the property will be sold in its entirety.

In a straightforward assessment of the ground and the holding, Mr Forde describes a 135ac section as the best of land. A further 50ac he describes as needing a certain amount of reclamation and attention, while the 30ac of forestry – of which 26ac has 15 years of premia remaining and 4ac is in mature trees – is described as typical planting land. The annual payment for the forestry comes to €4,775, which represents the only entitlements with the farm.

Mr Forde, who is jointly handling the sale with Irish and European Properties, says that locals, who know the holding well, recall a time when the entire farm was in tillage.

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"The place is ideal for tillage and indeed dairying," says Mr Forde. "It is serviced by an internal roadway to which all fields have access. The fencing is good but the whole farm could do with a fresh eye and a fresh pair of hands to bring out the best in it."

In terms of the yard, it is a combination of some old-style stone outhouses and more modern sheds. The accommodation includes a 60ft x 45ft cattle shed, a 60ft x 42ft barn, a machinery shed measuring 60ft x 45ft and a range of older stone buildings arranged in the old courtyard style.

"None of the sheds are in ruins, they are traditional but good," explains Mr Forde.

"They are all roofed and ready for use. Of course, like the land, the yard could do with attention and freshening up," he added.

The bungalow is modest for the size of the farm but with some cosmetic attention it is ready to function as the heart of the homestead.

It is the preference of the vendor and the joint selling agents that the place be sold as an entire.

"It is a natural unit and it would be a shame to break it up," Mr Forde explains.

When pushed to give a breakdown of the per-acre price, he gives a guide of €3,500/ac for the forestry, €6,000/ac for the 50ac parcel and €10,000/ac for the 135ac with house and yard.

The auctioneers are expecting keen interest in the property.

"It is seldom a farm of this size comes on the market in this area immediately southwest of Cork city," explains Ernest Forde.

"There is a real hunger for land in the tillage and dairy sectors at the moment and this place could be the subject of a hot contest yet."

Irish Independent