PLANS have been announced for a new online agricultural auction which will see Winchester farmers catapulted into the 21st century.

Property and business asset consultancy firm ES Group, in Hursley, will launch the new site in March for locals to buy and sell farming machinery.

Agricultural specialist Tim Salter, who jointly spearheads the new team, said: “There’s a new way for Hampshire’s agricultural community to buy and sell farm machinery and equipment, with no transport costs to and from the market place for vendors, or wasted journeys waiting for your lot to come up only to be out-bid.

“We’ve already seen strong demand across the county for our services, and it has been a very active first nine months in the market.”

Around 75 per cent of lots were sold in the firm’s most recent collective auction.

During last year, there was a range of high-quality goods sold including a 2010 John Deere 6430 loader tractor for £31,000, a 2011 Teagle Tomahawk 8080 for £5,250, a 2012 McHale F540 round baler for £11,000 and a 2012 McHale 991 BC wrapper for £6,000.

Ian Millington, who leads the team alongside Tim Salter, added: “Our experience as auctioneers combined with our knowledge of the agricultural market has allowed us to make this exciting move.

“We are delighted with the success of the auctions held since the team’s foundation in March and look forward to growing our reputation across Hampshire as a reliable and trusted vendor in 2015.”