The price of hill land in Scotland has doubled in recent years, driven by demand for tree planting either from landowners looking to avail of government grants, or companies looking to offset greenhouse gas emissions.

Ground which previously was sold for £1,500/acre is now being bought for closer to £3,000/acre.

According to James Presly from ANM Estates, renewed interest in buying land to plant trees became apparent last year, and that is now coming through into prices.

“The biggest change to prices is in the higher ground but it is filtering down to lowground farms, with arable units now being looked at by buyers looking to plant” said Presly.

“It is mix of individuals, companies and investors who are buying the land. They are looking for land which hasn’t been previously planted on and has good access to decent roads. Bridges on the farm must be able to withstand heavy machinery,” he added.

The private sector in Scotland has planted just under 11,000 hectares in each of the last two years. The Scottish Government wants to raise the amount planted per year to 15,000 hectares by 2025.