Conservation estate on banks of Loch Lomond goes on sale for £4m

The 1,200 hectare Cashel Estate on the banks of Loch Lomond with ancient woodland has come onto the market.

Conservation estate on banks of Loch Lomond goes on sale for £4m

A conservation estate on the banks of Loch Lomond has gone on sale for over £4m.

The 1,200-hectare Cashel Estate, close to the eastern shore of the loch, has come onto the market.

It’s described as being home to native woodland and “diverse natural capital assets” including peatland, mixed ecosystems, biodiversity and carbon storage.

It also includes an occupied farmhouse with views over Loch Lomond and the right to launch a boat on the loch.

The estate is for sale through GOLDCREST Land & Forestry Group for £4,085,000 as a whole or in five lots.

It is owned and managed by Cashel Forest Trust, who bought it in 1995 with a grant from the Millennium Forest for Scotland Trust.

The trust established the large new native species woodland on a former hill farm as a demonstration forest which the estate agent described as “best practice.”

Following an extensive planting and restoration programme, it boasts 300ha of native woodland, one of the largest and oldest of the ‘new’ native woodlands in Scotland, including oak, birch, ash, aspen, alder, gean, hazel, holly, juniper, willow and Scots pine. These stand alongside significant areas of ancient oakwood.

Montane scrub, of which there is a very limited resource in Scotland and offers support for biodiversity, has been planted on parts of the extensive moorland.

The 1,200-hectare Cashel Estate has gone onto the market

Cashel Estate is managed for the benefits of conservation, leisure and public access and there are five picturesque walking trails, of which three are wheelchair-accessible.

There is also a visitor centre which includes education displays and recent works have included the rebuilding of a wildlife dipping pond and installation of a viewing hide for red squirrels.

A peatland restoration project has already been carried out on 80 hectares of degraded peatland with phase 2, involving a further 140 hectares, due to start in September.

The project is expected to generate around 28,000 Pending Issuance Units (PIUs) which will be issued later this year. It is thought there is further potential for peatland restoration and corresponding carbon credits, subject to validation tests.

A proportion of the revenue generated by a hydroelectricity scheme on the estate is paid to the owner of Cashel.

Jon Lambert, partner of GOLDCREST Land & Forestry Group, said: “Cashel is a breathtaking property with wonderful ancient and native woodlands in a fantastic setting close to the shore of Loch Lomond with fabulous loch views.

“It is much loved by the local community and there is scope to develop it further as a tourist destination, from a café/restaurant and/or retail offering to glamping opportunities, subject to consents.

“This is an exceedingly rare and desirable opportunity to purchase a stunning wild estate that has international importance and continue the excellent stewardship shown by Cashel Forest Trust.”

Nander Robertson, operations director of Cashel Forest Trust, said: “Evolving forestry policy in the 1980s and 90s had only just begun to recognise the importance of protecting and expanding our native woodland cover. Grant support for the establishment of new native woodlands was a relatively novel concept at the time but Cashel is no longer alone.

“Since the 1990s a significant number of individuals and organisations have become devoted to the promotion and establishment of native woodlands throughout the UK.

“We are immensely proud of the woodland we have created at Cashel, transforming it over 25 years from a bracken covered farm into the stunning amenity it is today. This has only been made possible with the unstinting support of volunteers, funders and trustees.

“However, we feel we have taken it as far as we can. We hope stewardship will pass to a buyer who will be equally passionate about this land and build on the conservation work carried out to date. We are looking for a custodian who will further enhance this legacy and protect it for the future.”

Cashel also comprises low ground grazing, moorland and the 0.97ha Jubilee Orchard, planted to commemorate the late Queen’s Platinum Jubilee as part of The Queen’s Green Canopy Scheme.

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