Two plots of Westmeath forestry sold for a total of €170,000 at auction last week, but for very different rates.
The first lot of 20Ha (50ac ) was located at Killynan, Turin, with 48 acres in timber made up of Norway spruce, sitka spruce, and lodge pole pine.
It was described by auctioneer Thomas Potterton as “a superb block of well-managed forestry”.
Planted 18 years ago the plantation has two years of premiums left, amounting to a net payment of €8,258 per annum, and is currently due for thinning.
This parcel of forest opened at €50,000 and with three bidders in the frame it was bid to €70,000, increasing in increments of €5,000.
Matters progressed at this pace until the price reached €120,000 and with two bidders left it continued to rise in increments of €1,000 until it went on the market at €125,000. The 50ac were sold at that price to a Cavan pig farmer, at a price of €3,400 per acre.
The second lot is a smaller plantation at Lynn, 2.5 miles from Mullingar and bounded by the River Brosna and close to the canal and Lough Ennell.
Extending to 10 Ha (25ac ) the timber is made up of mature pine and Norway spruce of similar vintage to the earlier lot, and with three years premiums left at €4,203 per annum.
Bidding opened at €15,000 and attracted the attention of the two customers who competed for the first lot.
Bidding continued apace until the property went on the market at €43,000.
From there it went up in bids of €500 until it got to €45,000 when it was sold to the underbidder on the first lot, a local businessman.
Thomas Potterton admitted to some disappointment with the €1,800/ac price but nevertheless was happy for the vendor that the property sold for a reasonable return.