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Leading stud farm moving to Leighton

Created on 05/09/2013 @ 08:38


Two years after purchasing Leighton Farm Estate at Welshpool The Potter Group has announced that the historic premises is to become home to one of the country’s fastest growing stud farms.

Agreement has been completed with David and Teresa Futter to switch their expanding Yorton Farm operation from near Shrewsbury to Leighton and the couple will take occupancy by the start of October.

The formal transfer of the Victorian model farm, with seven houses and 300 acres of land, was completed from Powys County Council by James Potter in September 2011, paving the way for considerable investment by the Potter Group in the restoration of the Grade Two listed buildings.

"The long term proposal was to create an equine centre at Leighton,” said James Potter, managing director of The Potter Group (pictured second from left).

 “The opportunity to house one of the country’s most respected stud farms at Leighton was too good to miss.  The move presents tremendous possibilities for future regeneration at the site, which had been falling into disrepair

“The move not only protects the historic model farm buildings for future generations but also brings new employment opportunities to the area.

“As a family and as a company we are absolutely delighted to have completed the agreement with David and Teresa Futter of Yorton Farm. We have lived in Leighton for many years and I consider it a privilege to be able to repair and restore Leighton Centre to something more akin to its former glory,” he said.

Yorton Farm is recognised as one of Britain’s fastest growing breeding operations, with the standing stallion roster of Sulamani, Malinas, Librettist and Sakhee in big demand with endorsements from Britain, Ireland and France.

From humble beginnings foaling mares for nearby contacts less than 10 years ago the business has outgrown its Shropshire home, with 300 mares visiting the farm in the past year.

“We love it at Yorton but if we are to continue growing we need more room and when the opportunity to move to Leighton Farm came along it seemed the perfect one for us,” said Mr Futter.

“We know the Potter family through their National Hunt interests and we are all very excited at the prospects ahead, though there will be family tears when we close the gate at Yorton for the final time.”

He said the opportunity to switch to Leighton, doubling the size of the operation, would enable the Yorton stud to build on past successes and expects to increase the stallion count.

“We are not looking to become the biggest, we just want to have stallions who are successful for the breeders who support us. If we can continue standing commercial stallions who the breeders like, and keep having fun, that would be good enough,” he said.

“We have come a long way very quickly, owning mares and standing Group One stallions. Providing the highest standard of care to each and every animal is our over-riding concern.”

The husband and wife team and sons Lester (15) and Riley (13) will be moving to Leighton along with yard manager Lucy Dawson and other full time staff and there will be local recruitment opportunities offered by the move.

“The expansion will certainly mean more jobs and there are always seasonal opportunities for staff,” said Mr Futter.

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