Archive for September, 2009

Climate Challenge Fund Supports Allotments and Growing

Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

Six projects associated with allotments or community gardens have received grants in the latest round of funding from the Climate Challenge fund: The biggest grant of £310,767 has been awarded to Moffat CAN, Dumfriesshire – Grow Allot (Greatly Reduce/Reuse/Recycle Our Waste And Lead Local Organic Trade), to reuse derelict buildings and land to provide recycling facilities, allotments and an organic market garden for Upper Annandale.

Other grants have been awarded to:
Drylaw Neighbourhood Centre, Edinburgh – Drylaw and Telford Community Gardens Project in the north of Edinburgh, to create seven food growing areas to grow fruit and vegetables for local people. As well as growing their own food, local people will benefit from a series of cooking classes and Climate Challenge workshops. – £103,641
Aberdeen Forward Ltd – Transition Aberdeen.  As well as seeking to divert waste from landfill through the Creative Waste Exchange, participation in city allotments, growing food for the benefit of family and friends, by new and existing allotment holders will be encouraged with workshops and practical assistance – £75,730
Firth and Mossbank Community Allotment Group, Shetland – Phase 1 Mossbank Allotments, to develop allotments on part of the former Firth Camp- £54,175
Care and Repair Edinburgh Ltd – Edinburgh Garden Share Scheme (EGSS), to match garden owners who have land to spare with people who would like to grow fruit and vegetables – £92,043
The Organic Growers of Bothwell – Bothwell Community Garden. The funding will be used to construct 54 raised beds, two polytunnels and wormeries, along with a small orchard containing fruit trees and soft fruit. – £196,354

If you want to know how to apply for a Climate Challenge Fund Grant click on this link which will take you to their information pages

Cars and Allotments

Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

Does anyone out there know of any studies or statistics about car use by allotment holders?

We have just received a request for information from a group in Kirkaldy.  They are trying to get planning permission to open an allotment site on some suitable land.  One of the objections lodged against this application is that the allotment users would greatly increase car usage in the area. The group are looking for evidence to contradict this.
The SAGS secretary lives next door to her allotment site and her impression is that there are seldom more than three or four cars in the car park, and most of the time it is empty.  However she has never actually sat down with a diary and recorded what happens.  The impression of the SAGS committee in general is that many allotment holders walk or cycle to their plots, but obviously this depends on whether the plot holders are local, or have to travel a distance – and also on whether they have sheds to store equipment.

So if you have any thoughts or information – either way – please share it with us.  Either post a comment, or email the sags webmaster or the sags secretary.

Tories call for allotment summit

Friday, September 4th, 2009

Shadow Minister for the Environment, Dr Nanette Milne MSP has called on the SNP Scottish Government to organise an allotments summit to help Scotland’s 32 local authorities take forward a strategic plan to develop additional allotment space. Dr Milne hopes that bringing Interested groups from across Scotland together will help find a way to release additional allotment plots.

Dr Nanette Milne, Conservative MSP for the North East said:
“There are clearly many benefits from growing your own food. As well as the obvious environmental benefits, there are clear health benefits from exercise and good quality produce, together with valuable social benefits. There is great potential to link up different generations, to provide meaningful activities for young people as well as using the skills and acquired knowledge of older gardeners.

“Demand for allotments far exceeds supply in every local authority in Scotland. With food prices increasing, fear of the implications of additives in food and also the recession, demand continues to grow, particularly among younger gardeners. We simply must respond to this demand and do all we can to encourage people to grow their own food.

Roseanna Cunningham MSP, Minister for the Environment replied:
“We are aware that some 3000 people are on a nationwide allotments waiting list and that 70 per cent of the currently allocated allotments are owned by local authorities. That leaves 30 per cent that are not, so there is also capacity to grow – that is a bit of a pun, of course – the numbers of allotments outwith local authority land.

“Nanette Milne will be happy to know that an allotments summit is under active consideration at the moment. We are aware of the enormous pressure on allotments and that we will have to try to find some way to resolve it.”