Farming & Rural Land

Wiltshire’s expert agricultural solicitors

Family law, wills, wealth retention, business planning and property

Legal services for farming families

Farmers and rural land owners need specialist advice tailored to their needs.  The current political and economic situation makes the need for such advice even more important.

At Goughs we have a long history of acting for a wide range of clients within the agricultural sector both within the South West and beyond.  We act for farmers and rural land owners both as individuals and businesses. 

We work with like-minded professionals to ensure that we can meet all of our agricultural clients’ legal requirements.

Specialist farming and agricultural law solicitors, Wiltshire

Expert advice tailored to you

At Goughs we understand what is important for our clients and take pride in adapting our services to achieve the best outcome for them.

Our areas of expertise include:

  • Buying and selling agricultural land

  • Agriculture succession planning

  • Farming and employment law

  • Agricultural employment 

  • Farm and land estate and tax planning

  • Farming inheritance disputes

  • Farming and family law

Why wait? Let's talk

Supporting Wiltshire’s farming community since 1882

Putting your trust in Goughs Solicitors

Many of the lawyers at Goughs Solicitors are from farming families themselves, meaning we fully understand the concerns our clients may have, as well as how to ensure you are protected for the future of your family and of the farm itself. 

Legal services for farming families FAQs

At Goughs we encourage all farming families to carefully consider how their estates and farms will be treated in the event of their death. It is imperative that farming families take specialist legal and tax advice in relation to their farms and land. Goughs are delighted to offer such a service as farms and land are often valuable, both in monetary terms and emotionally.

Inheritance tax reliefs are available in respect of farming and agricultural assets. To obtain such reliefs it is very important that farms and estates are structured in particular ways. Advice must, therefore, be sought on how farming estates should be structured to maximise the inheritance tax relief available to protect your farm for future generations.

Relationship breakdowns are always a stressful and difficult time for those concerned. However, for those in the farming community, it has the potential to have particularly damaging implications. The farm is often both the family home and a business and in many cases there is an emotional attachment to both, especially where the family have been involved in the farm for many generations.

As such, advising farmers and their families on the issues arising from a separation requires an appreciation of the matters that are specific to the farming way of life. Of course, not all farms are the same and each situation will be different but having an understanding of the issues that are faced in the rural community is vital to ensure that the advice is tailored and focussed.

At Goughs, we have a longstanding history of working with the rural community. We build relationships with our clients, we get to know what is important for them and we look to provide them with solutions to the problems they are facing using our experience and technical knowledge.

We also provide advice to those looking to obtain some protection from a future relationship breakdown, through cohabitation, pre and post marital agreements.

Farmers must consider how their business will survive when they want to take a step back, invite someone to join the business or an illness halts the farm working as it always has. Succession planning is a huge headache for any business owner, but, with a number of young farmers either wanting to exit the business altogether or not wanting to take on the same type of responsibility this leaves farmers who want a break or exit strategy in an impossible position. Most do not want to just sell up and leave everything they have worked for.

It is therefore essential that proper advice is taken regarding how the future of a farming business will continue to go from strength to strength and with the right partnership or alternative structure put in place.

As family partnerships become increasingly less likely it is essential to explore all options available. For example, joint ventures, which are a very popular solution, whether the family decide to move away from the business and sell the land on, it allows farmers who don’t have the family in the background to gain access to farming land and the business.

All too common succession planning is looked at far too late making it a very difficult time for all. For example, should it be the case that as a farmer you have no one to take on the property and there is no one who has shown an interest in taking the land on as an opportunity for future farming there are only really a few options available such as selling the farm or letting it with potential licences, or seeking a shared venture through the right contacts.

We also are acutely aware that you cannot always plan for everything, but sensible, pragmatic planning is absolutely essential. What if the family unit sadly dissolves? Perhaps there is a divorce, or someone becomes injured and they can no longer work? Debts can spiral out of control or there might be a disagreement between siblings or partners. Since so many businesses are family orientated it is worth preparing for these potential eventualities, which hopefully will never happen.

We can put you in touch with the right people to help in these situations and of course time is of the essence. The sooner you plan the better for everyone. The problem is finding the time. We all know how long the hours are and how much time needs to be put into run the business. Another reason to instruct a Solicitor and a team of specialists who will work with you along the way.

Your farm may have been in your family for generations and will be seeped in family history. Therefore any sale of land associated with it, or the purchasing of additional land, will be difficult decisions to make, both emotionally and financially.

Here at Goughs we have many years of experience in supporting Wiltshire’s farming community in transactions such as buying and selling farms and farmland, rural planning and development and farm tenancies.

Our experts will offer bespoke advice, after having taken the time to get to know you, your family, your business and of course, your property. As farm and rural specialists, we understand that every farm is completely unique and therefore comes with unique challenges.

Digmore Sid

Excellent service

I engaged the services of Goughs Solicitors in Trowbridge, in particular Ailie Peacock, to act on my behalf for the sale of my house. Ailie was always clear with her advice, acted in a timely manor and answered any questions I had almost immediately. She was very proactive in dealing with the other parties involved in a slightly convoluted chain.

Ailie also managed a very late request from our buyers with calm efficiency and the utmost professionalism. The end result was a smooth sale and completion, with remarkably little stress on our part. I would not hesitate from using them again.


Margaret Wilson

Clear concise advice

Quick response to e-mails or phone calls. Will certainly use again in the near future. Clear concise advice patiently given!


Mr Ian Liddle

Excellent service

Excellent service as usual.



Superb once again.

Superb once again. Goughs provides outstanding service... professional in getting the job done and conducted with grace and care. Thank you Goughs!


Ashley Stone

Rhianna Cole

The solicitor I dealt with at Goughs, Rhianna Cole, was an absolute star, I cannot fault her in any way at all. She made everything in the situation I was in so easy to understand, and she guided me through an extremely stressful time, with extreme professionalism, yet a very personal and sensitive touch. Can't big them up enough.



Matt Saunders

Made first-time buying a (relatively) simple process!

Sophie was very attentive and responsive and understood the need to act quickly in regard to our purchase process. She was diligent with the paperwork and was very easy to talk to and clear at explaining what was required in terms of action from our side and from the seller.



Legal 500

The Legal 500 is a research, ranking and publishing firm

Knowledgeable individual solicitors who when necessary are able to work together to review problems in depth   and put together sensible, appropriate and achievable solutions.


Chambers & Partners

Chambers and Partners produces international rankings for the legal industry

Adept at handling complex divorce proceedings and related financial disputes. Regularly assists with challenging private law children cases. Offers further experience in negotiating pre-nuptial and cohabitation agreements.


Peter Hellyer

My first port of call for all legal services

I have found Goughs Solicitors in Chippenham & Trowbridge to be fast and very efficient in their services to me, they understand your instruction and get on with it! They are very easy to talk to, which is equally very important to me. They are my first port of call for all legal services.


John Smith

Diligent and trustworthy company

I have dealt with Goughs on a professional level for over 10 years. During that time I have always found them to be a diligent and trustworthy company, always willing to help when I contact them. During the last 5 years in particular, I have had close contact with Phillip Bolton, Sophie Laird, Luchia Hirst and Nadine Cook. I can honestly say these four in particular are truly professional, diligent and hard working people. As a result of their ongoing professionalism and friendly manner, I would always feel happy to recommend them to any of my clients as I feel this is also a reflection on me and the service I provide to my clients. I will only be comfortable recommending people if I truly feel they provide a certain level of service and I can happily say Philip, Sophie, Luchia and Nadine do.


Your Farming & Rural Land team

Luchia Hirst

Associate Solicitor

Luchia has been practicing Private Client law for close to 8 years, and really enjoys the client contact and hands-on nature of this area of practice.

Phillip Bolton

Partner & Head of Private Wealth

Phillip is a Partner and Head of the Private Wealth Team at the firm. His practice encompasses all aspects of private client work, with a particular interest in complex Wills, wealth preservation, tax mitigation, and estate planning.

Thomas Boyce

Partner & Head of Farming & Rural Land

Thomas joined Goughs in April 2015 and was made a Partner in 2016. He is an experienced family law specialist and advises a wide range of clients, both married and unmarried, on the implications of relationship breakdown.

Rebecca Bailey

Senior Associate Solicitor

Rebecca joined Goughs in 2014 having previously spent 15 years at two major law firms in London and Leeds and advises on all aspects of property and construction.

Gemma Sumsion

Head of Real Estate & Corporate

Gemma is a Partner and Head of Real Estate & Corporate. She specialises in commercial property and corporate matters, acting for a wide range of clients.

Lindsey Nolan

Associate Solicitor

During her training contract, Lindsey developed an interest in Conveyancing, finding that she enjoyed progressing matters from start to finish whilst keeping open good lines of communication. Lindsey joined Goughs Solicitors in 2017 and became an Associate Solicitor in 2019.

Why work
with Goughs?


Our vast legal knowledge throughout the firm means we have others to lean on and learn from.

Our departments work together so we can address all of your specialist legal needs smoothly and efficiently.


Our team are always undertaking training and sharing knowledge so we have the most up to date specialist legal advice for you.

Farming Experience

Many members of the team are from farming families. We don’t just have experience of the law, we have been where you are.

We have been providing legal services to those in and around Wiltshire since 1882.

Related Pages

If you are considering selling part of all of your farm, read this handy guide on title deeds.

Everything you need to know on planning effectively for the future.

Property Investment

Private Wealth

Housebuilding & Land Development

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