The Hampshires have preserved 25 acres of their land at 6925 Newman Road in Fairfax for the last 24 years.
They first established the Hantslot Local Agricultural and Forestal District on Jan. 23, 1984 for an initial eight-year term and have renewed their application in 1992, 2000 and 2008.
“Your property has many natural resource features and outstanding forest resources making it a valuable addition to the Agriculture and Forestal program in Fairfax County,” according to James McGlone, urban forest conservationist with the Virginia Department of of Forestry.
The Planning Commission unanimously recommended approval of the request at a hearing on Wednesday, Oct. 5; the Board of Supervisors is scheduled to hold a hearing on Oct. 18 at 3:30 to make its decision.
Fairfax County offers reduced real estate tax assessments in exchange for a commitment to preserve “significant tracts of agricultural and forested land a commitment to preserve the land for the length of the term.”
“Since 1955, when we purchased their property, we have invested considerable time and money to improve and maintain the pastures and forested land for our enjoyment, as well as for the traveling public. We mow the fields to give them a park-like appearance and this also serves to control the growth of weeds. We maintain the board fences, painting them along Newman Road so they contribute to a distinguished rural atmosphere in Fairfax County,” according to the Hampshires.
A SEVEN-ROOM FARMHOUSE built in the 1880 still exists and a newer house was built for family members in 1995. Approximately 12 acres of the property are in agricultural use as pasture and flower gardens, 10 acres remains forested or undeveloped and three acres houses the two residence on the site.
The property is located in Clifton between Colchester Road and Newman Road.
“The presence of upland forest, pasture and floodplain on the property suggests” considerable wildlife diversity. Deer and coyote are reported on the property, according to the Virginia Department of Forestry.
Approximately 8.5 acres of the property is in pasture for a two-horse operation and a patch of land is dedicated to growing flowers. According to the Hampshires, “an average yield of $3,000 worth of cut flowers have been grown on and sold from the property. In addition, the fields are produced pasturage for horses.”
About 10 acres of riparian and upland areas are kept undeveloped as wildlife refuge and an unnamed, perennial creek and .5 acre in-line pond exists in the wooded area.
The family has owned the property since 1955. The property is located in the county’s Chesapeake Bay Preservation area; it is located within Popes Head Creek watershed area, which flows to the Occoquan River, and is situated entirely within the county’s water supply protection overlay district, according to Planning documents.
The 1880 house is listed part of “Hantslot Farm” on the Fairfax Inventory of HIstoric Sites for the Springfield District.