Award-winning farm’s sale is nearly complete
The sale of a farm known for its award-winning vineyard is nearing completion, allowing the owner to spend more time with his family.
Contracts are expected to be exchanged next week on the sale of Lavenham Brook Farm in Brent Eleigh, with a local buyer purchasing the 52.37 hectare site from current owner Nick Thomson.
The farm is highly-regarded, having won a national trophy for one its rosé wines, and has a herd of champion red poll cattle.
The plot also includes an orchard and a popular farm shop. It is believed the new owner will keep all of the site together.
The farm was put on the market in September with a guide price of £1.21million, with Mr Thomson citing a desire to spend time travelling with his wife Rosemary, after his two children showed no interested in taking over the business.
At the time, Mr Thomson said: “It will be a real wrench but I promised my wife it would never become a mill stone, and there are many other things that I want to do.
“Having made all sorts of changes to the farm, I have ended up becoming a second-rate administrator and I don’t get to spend any time in the vineyard.
“You spend a lot of time running around in circles, which I don’t particularly enjoy.
“We want to travel when we want to, and we have some forestry properties in Aberdeenshire which we’d like to visit more frequently.
“I’d also like to write a book about Suffolk churches, a sort of layman’s guide linking them to a nice walk.
“I’m sorry to be leaving; it’s a lovely place with beautiful views.”
Mr Thomson bought Brook Farm in Cock Lane in 2000 after a career as an underwriter at Lloyds.
He bought the cattle first, building up a herd of 75 cows, before developing the vineyard on the sloping farmland, producing 8,000 bottles of wine a year.
Building his business up from scratch, he has won many awards for his work.
In July, his Brook Farm Pinot Noir Symphony Rosé was judged outstanding at the Wine of the Year competition 2014, also winning him a national trophy from the UK Vineyards’ Association.