EXETER - On December 21, 2020, SELT secured an Agricultural Land Easement on the 28.86 acre hay farm owned by Nick and Nancy Brett, located along Beede Hill Road in Fremont, NH. The picturesque property had been prioritized for conservation by the Town of Fremont, which contributed $150,000 from its Conservation Fund to help fund the project.
The Agricultural Land Easement ensures that the Brett Farm continues to have the opportunity to be a working farm in the future. The hay fields rooted in the farm’s rich agricultural soil have been a key cog in the local food system by providing feed to local beef and dairy operations.
“The Bretts realize that time is fleeting and their farm is one of their largest assets and also something they cherish,” said Duane Hyde, SELT’s Land Conservation Director. “If the Bretts did not have this sense of place and conservation ethos, the property could easily be split up into multiple lots and developed. This would result in the loss of both farmland, treasured scenic vistas and important wildlife habitat.”
“The idea of preserving this for future generations seemed like a really nice thing to do,” Nick Brett said. “Even if I may not be able to enjoy it some day, I know that it would be a tremendous source of enjoyment for other people.”
In addition to the Town of Fremont, funding support came from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resource Conservation Service’s Agricultural Land Easement Program, New Hampshire’s Mooseplate grant program, and the Great Bay Resource Protection Partnership. The Bretts also offered a generous reduction in price for the sale of the land.
SELT is a nonprofit land trust with a mission to protect and sustain the significant lands in our communities for clean water, fresh food, outdoor recreation, healthy forests, and wildlife. Since 1980, the Southeast Land Trust has worked in 52 communities of southeastern New Hampshire to conserve more than 22,000 acres of land through conservation agreements and ownerships. SELT is accredited by the Land Trust Accreditation Commission. For more information, visit seltnh.org.