TORFAEN council has sold a farm in New Inn for £1.1 million – 22 percent higher than the £900,000 guide price.

The county borough council’s cabinet agreed plans to sell Fir Tree Farm in 2018 after concerns about the welfare of animals and management issues and a lease surrender was achieved in December 2019.

The delegated decision report says: “Ordinarily this report would have been considered by cabinet but with no meeting planned in the near future due to COVID-19, and the desire by both parties to formally confirm acceptance of the offer and undertake the disposal, this matter has been referred to the chief executive for a decision under general delegation granted.”


The farm was offered for sale in a two-stage process and the highest offer received was a £1.1 million cash offer.

The council said that despite the bidding process ending during the lockdown it hadn’t “affected the interested parties”.

Torfaen council said care was taken and processes were adapted during the bidding process to ensure that social distancing rules were abided by.

This meant final offers were submitted to the council via email rather than paper. In aid of transparency, these emails were forwarded to the relevant authority and were not opened until the deadline had passed.

The report says: “Business support colleagues were instructed not to open the emails as they arrived but to forward them all in one email shortly after the deadline to a) the Senior Surveyor dealing with the transaction; b) the Corporate Asset Manager and c) the Acting Head of Democratic Services.

“This way, three people would independently witness the offers receive, to mirror the paper-based process.”

The farm itself includes a three-bedroom detached farm house and 73 acres of land.

The council inherited the land from Gwent County Council when local government was reorganised in 1996 to create the five Gwent councils we see today.