THE prized Riverina pastoral portfolio of former Australian-raised, United Kingdom-based businessman Anthony Crichton‐Brown is being offered to the market, 18 months after he passed away.
Mr Crichton‐Brown was a former chairman and chief executive of Lumley Insurance who upon his retirement fulfilled a lifelong dream to become a grazier.
In 1990 he purchased the extensive 2722ha Riverina cattle and sheep station Deltroit near Gundagai, which he sold in 2013.
Over the years he secured a number of other assets including the 878ha historic Humula Station, southeast of Wagga Wagga, sold in 2014.
The family of the international investor turned grazier has appointed Inglis Rural Property and Elders Real Estate to market and sell his remaining 51,280ha Coolong Pastoral holdings in New South Wales which are anticipated to make around $50 million.
They comprise the 18,062ha Natue Station and Merrimajeel located 100km north of Hay, the 5139ha Fairleigh 30km west of Natue Station and the 28,079ha Toronga Station, 12km north-west of Hay – all in the renowned Riverina region.
Here’s a breakdown of what’s on offer.
Natue Station and Merrimajeel
In 2016, Mr Crichton-Brown acquired the 16,200ha Natue Station for an undisclosed sum and a short time later, secured the adjoining 1862ha Merrimajeel.
Regarded as some of the best country in the Hay district, the aggregation has a mixture of open grass country through to expansive flood plains (via the Merrimajeel and Muggabah creek systems), with responsive red soils to heavier clays.
The estimated carrying capacity is 12,000 to 14,000 DSE or cattle equivalents.
Water is sourced from 2km of Lachlan River frontage, a network of surface dams and a refurbished bore and telemetric trough and tank system.
The aggregation is anticipated to make between $15 million and $17 million.
In 2009, Mr Crichton-Brown purchased the 39,375ha irrigation, farming and livestock investment Toronga Station. Soon afterwards, 11,296ha of irrigation country was sold off.
Today, Toronga spans 28,079ha and is ideally suited to sheep and cattle.
The grassland and saltbush country has been conservatively managed with a sustainable ‘time-grazing’ rotational management program and what is described as a ‘sensibly designed’ paddock configuration.
Toronga has an estimated carrying capacity of 20,000 to 25,000 DSE or cattle equivalents. It is currently running 5500 ewes plus followers and 450 cows plus followers.
Significant investment in water has been made with a reticulated ring main supplied by four equipped ground bores plus a network of dams and tanks equipped with telemetric technology.
Toronga also boasts a newly constructed shearing shed and sheep yards, large-scale steel cattle yards, machinery shed/workshop, chemical store, shearers quarters, grain storage and additional livestock handling facilities.
Toronga is expected to make between $28 million and $30 million.
Productive soils with red loams over clay and red rises can carry 2500 to 2700 DSE. Excellent water is sourced via a newly-developed bore and solar pump. Fairleigh is ideal for local landholders seeking additional scale.
Fairleigh is likely to make between $2.5 million and $2.6 million.
Natue Station and Merrimajeel, Fairleigh at Booligal and Toronga at Hay are being offered for sale via a two-stage expression of interest campaign closing on July 21.
The Crichton-Brown family has decided to retain the 388ha Goulburn district property Merrilla, featuring an 1838-era homestead, purchased in 2015 for more than $6 million.