Next steps after a Hampshire County Farm tenancy

Hampshire County Farms provides an inclusive gateway into farming, with all the opportunities and responsibilities a farming business will involve. Our priority is to provide opportunities for new entrants into a sustainable and innovative farming environment as well as, in some cases, next step opportunities for existing tenants to progress to larger holdings.

There are two main types of tenancy – starter and progression.

Starter holdings

Starter tenancies are intended as smaller, more affordable opportunities for new entrants to start and grow their farming businesses. These will normally be for 7 years with a discretionary 3 year extension. Progression tenancies will normally be for 10 years with a discretionary 5 year extension.

Progression holdings

Progression opportunities are limited in number and so will not normally be offered as standard to existing tenants, and will need to be supported by a compelling business case. Where supportive of land management priorities across the wider rural land portfolio, we may be able to create new progression opportunities.

It's therefore really important that our tenants set realistic expectations about how long their tenancy with Hampshire County Farms will last (no longer than 7-10 years for a starter tenant).

A planned exit strategy for moving on from the council farm by the end of the fixed term of your tenancy will form an important part of your application to become a tenant and will need to be kept under review during your tenancy.

Your tenancy is a stepping stone to achieve your future aspirations.

A wooden fence with a barn in the background

William and Katy Fox were tenant farmers with Hampshire County Farms until Spring 2022 when they moved on to the next step of their farming journey.

Hampshire County Farms did what it said on the tin - it got us going. We’ve now gone on and purchased a farm and we are really living our dreams now.
William and Katy Fox, previous tenants

George Dunn of the Tenant Farmers Association was delighted to see William and Katy progress and stated,

This is exactly why County Council Smallholdings exist. They provide opportunities to individuals to be farmers in their own account. It is all about progression and Lyde Green Farm has given William and Katy the opportunity to build both experience and capital which can now take them onto the next stage of their farming career. At the same time, Lyde Green Farm is now available to a prospective new entrant or to a farmer who is early in their journey in the industry so the whole process of progression can start again.

We will support you throughout your tenancy in the management of your business, keeping in regular contact whenever reasonably needed and facilitating training, mentoring and support for your personal wellbeing wherever feasible.

Do keep your business plan up to date and be prepared to put in significant efforts to progress beyond your county farms opportunity: Unfortunately market opportunities for tenancies can be few and far between, with applicants facing strong competition, so strong performance, forward-thinking and entrepreneurialism will be key.

Find out about what we’re looking for from our tenants.