The Ridley genetic bank is well represented around West Wyalong, and the latest property offering there has a long and circuitous history of that notable family’s involvement. “Allambie”, the offering in question, is a 2570 hectare (6350 acre) aggregation of four separate blocks (two adjoining) at Girral, 45 kilometres north of West Wyalong.
All of it was originally part of a big run taken up in the 1880s by William Ridley, one of whose grandsons, Vern, took up the block called “Allambie” and built a homestead in 1925.
They had two daughters, one of whom, Valorie, married a serviceman, Lloyd Friend, during the Second World War. After the war they settled on “Allambie”, where Lloyd established the successful Allambie Merino stud.
Their son Max in due course took over the property and the stud, before selling to the present owners, Cliff and Joanne Pilon, in 2012. In so doing, a family circuit was completed, as Joanne’s grandmother was a Ridley, born on “Allambie”. The Pilons had previously been farming several blocks around Marsden, and in 2001 had bought the “Aldersyde” block adjoining “Allambie”.
They later added two nearby blocks, “Porter’s” and “Millhaven”, to complete the present “Allambie” aggregation, but now are looking to scale down on a smaller grazing block close to Albury.
The offering represents a substantial land package in a renowned mixed farming area characterised by heavy red mulching soils and ideal for the time-honoured local enterprise mix of sheep and winter cropping.
Under present ownership the properties support an annual winter cropping program of around 1200ha and a self-replacing Merino flock of 1000 Pooginook blood ewes.
Offers for “Allambie” will be considered as a whole, or in separate blocks or combinations thereof. The main homestead block, “Allambie”, comprises 773ha (1911ac) and fronts the semi-permanent Humbug Creek, alongside which the homestead is set in established gardens.
Renovated three years ago, the weatherboard homestead has four bedrooms, a modern kitchen, open-plan living areas, reverse-cycle air conditioning and outdoor entertaining area.
Working improvements include a five-stand shearing shed and yards, machinery shed, workshop, raised ram shed and silos. “Aldersyde”, the 666ha (1646ac) block adjoining “Allambie”, has a four-bedroom fibro cottage where the Pilons lived until moving to “Allambie” in 2012.
Other structures are a two-stand shearing shed, machinery shed, barn, hayshed and 400 tonnes of silo capacity.
“Millhaven” comprises 676ha (1670ac) and comes with a four-stand shearing shed and steel yards, plus silos, and the smallest block, “Porter’s”, of 447ha (1106ac) is bare of structures.
Average rainfall is 450mm and the property is watered by the Humbug Creek, dams, tanks and a bore (unequipped).
The cropping program is focused on wheat, with a long-term yield performance of around 2.5 tonnes/ha, but also includes barley and canola rotations. All four blocks have stubble paddocks ready for crop – 1240ha in total – assuring the new owners of a timely seasonal start.