Former Upminster farmer hopes to buy back land, but is wary of price going 'up and up and up'

Ray Chapman, formerly of Upminster's Lodge Farm in Park Farm Road

Ray Chapman said he hopes he is able to buy the land back from Essex County Council - Credit: Ben Lynch

A former Upminster farmer intends to try and buy back the land his family worked for over a century. 

The Chapman family lived on and worked Lodge Farm in Park Farm Road from 1910 until earlier this year, when they were evicted by Essex County Council

Since Ray, who ran the farm, and his mother, who has since died, left the site, the council has been trying to find a new owner. 

A spokesperson for Essex County Council has now said an original buyer withdrew their offer due to potential issues with water extraction. 

Ray said he can offer around £1.8m, a figure which was previously rejected, and is hopeful he will be able to buy back the land. 

He said: “I haven’t got as much money as a lot of people, but I have got some money, and good enough, I think, to buy it. But it all depends. 

“I can’t go up and up and up.” 

An Essex County Council spokesperson said: “The farm and both residential properties are now in the process of being remarketed as a single lot, with a view to securing an alternative purchaser.”

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