NEXT ALLOTMENTS WORKING GROUP MEETING
In light of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, allotments working group meetings will not be held until further notice.
Wednesday 9th September 2020 at 7.00 p.m. in Lynemouth Welfare Pavilion, Park Road, Lynemouth, Northumberland, NE61 5XL. The agenda and minutes are published on notice board in the parish and at the allotments and available before the meeting by contacting the Parish Clerk.
Members of the public are invited to attend these meetings, and there is an opportunity at the beginning of each meeting for the public to speak and raise issues of concern. If you would like to attend a meeting, please feel free to come along. Meetings take place on at least four times per year (in March/June/September/December), and usually on the second Wednesday of the month, at 7.00 p.m.
PEST CONTROL AT ALLOTMENTS
The policy on pest infestation such as rats at the allotment site has been regularly reiterated is follows: legal guidelines prevent the Parish Council from handing out rat poison any more. If you sell certain non-medicinal poisons or specialised products, generally for agricultural or horticultural use, such as rat or mole poisons you must hold a licence. The Parish Council does not wish to apply to obtain a poisons licence. Allotment tenants must respect the safety of other users of the allotment site and must not have firearms, including air guns, on the allotment site.
It was agreed at the Annual Meeting of the Parish Council on Wednesday 10th May 2017 that an allotments working group (often referred to as "the committee") shall oversee the general management and maintenance of the overall allotment area and its tenants on behalf of the Council. The Council sets the Terms of Reference, and the group reports periodically to the Council.
Members of the Allotments Working Group: Councillor G. Thompson (Chair), D. Cotton (Vice Chairman), C. Johnson, B. Grisdale.
Co-opted Members: One representative of horticultural (garden) tenants [Mr. A. Fairfax]. One representative of equine (horse) tenants [Ms. K. Coulson].
ALLOTMENT RENT COLLECTION
Allotment rents will be collected on the first and last Saturday in February each year [Saturday 6th February 2021 and Saturday 27th February 2021] between 10.00 a.m. and 12 noon in the Lynemouth Miners' Welfare Institute (Bridge Road) at Lynemouth Miners' Welfare Institute, Northumberland NE61 5YJ. The rent for the year 2020/21 is £40.00 per chain (since 1st February 2017) and is reviewed annually. This charge does not include any extra for the use and supply of free mains water.
BY ORDER OF THE PARISH COUNCIL
IF ALLOTMENT HOLDERS ARE UNABLE TO PAY IN PERSON ON THE RENT DAYS, THEY MAY MAKE A PAYMENT IN ADVANCE BY CONTACTING THE PARISH CLERK. LATE PAYMENTS WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED AND WILL CAUSE TERMINATION OF THE TENANCY AGREEMENT.
All plots currently have a waiting list. Any vacant or relinquished allotments will only be re-let to residents on the waiting list who live in the village and whose application reaches the top of the waiting list on a first-come-first served basis.
As early as the 18th Century, there was considerable interest in the provision of smallholdings to relieve poverty, but this concern was concentrated upon the rural poor right through the 19th Century. There were some private initiatives to provide allotment gardens on the outskirts of cities, such as Birmingham, but these were usually more to provide leisure activities for the labouring class than to relieve poverty. Most allotments were small and more appropriate as urban recreation than to support the rural poor. In 1887 it was estimated that around two thirds of allotments were under a quarter of an acre (the so-called garden allotments) and only 9% above one acre.
There was huge demand for allotments in the early years of the century, backed by legislation in 1907, requiring local authorities to supply them if demanded. By 1913, there were 600,000 allotments in England and Wales. During the War, large amounts of unused urban land were requisitioned to provide allotments to increase food supply, and by 1918 the number had risen to 1,500,000. Of course, the requisitioned land had to be returned after the War, but there was a huge demand for allotments, partly from returning servicemen who found it hard to re-enter civilian life. Legislation in 1925 required the need for allotments to be considered in every town planning scheme, and required that land purchased or appropriated by a local authority must not be disposed of or used for another purpose without ministerial consent.
The number of allotments fell in the 1920s as the requisitioned land was returned to its former owners, but in the early thirties there was strong support for allotments for the unemployed, including some provision of allotments for the keeping of animals. On the outbreak of the Second War, there were almost 60,000 acres of allotments (about 570,000 individual plots) in urban areas of England and Wales, and 50,000 acres providing some 170,000 plots in rural areas. In wartime, there was another campaign to requisition land for extra food production, which was a great success.
Since 1945, allotments have increasingly been gardens for urban dwellers. The Allotments Act 1950 restated the requirement that local authorities should have a duty to provide garden allotments, but left out the farm allotments for the rural poor, which are therefore no longer legally protected in this way.
Despite extensive legal protection for allotments and legal requirements that they be provided, there is a considerable shortage of allotments. A report in 2010 estimated a waiting list of as much as 40 years in some areas.
Plot sizes are measured in 'chains'. The size of a standard allotment is one 'chain' = 22 yds (20.12m).
Plot sizes are measured in rods, an old Anglo-Saxon unit so-called because it was the length of the rod used to control a team of oxen. A rod is 5.5 yards (5.03 metres).
There are 4 rods in a chain, that is 22 yards (20.12 metres).
There are 10 chains in a furlong and 8 furlongs in a mile. So a mile is 80 x 22 = 1760 yards (1609.3 metres).
An acre is the area of land that could be ploughed in a day, being a furrow long (furlong) and a chain wide, or 160 square rods, which is 4840 sq yards (4048 sq metres). A hectare is 10,000 sq metres so an acre is 0.4 of a hectare.
Plots sizes are usually 5 rods or 10 rods. A 10 rod allotment is actually 10 square rods in area, that is 10 x 5.5 x 5.5 = 302.5 sq yards (253 sq metres).
In metric units, a 10 rod allotment is one fortieth of a hectare: in imperial units it is one sixteenth of an acre.
HOW TO APPLY FOR AN ALLOTMENT
If you would like to be added to the allotment waiting list please complete the allotment application form, which is available from: The Parish Clerk who is the designated Allotments Officer - email email@example.com
PREVENTION OF PESTS
Allotment tenants are responsible for the upkeep of their own plot. This includes adhering to the Prevention of Pests Act, which states that an allotment tenant is responsible for keeping the land free of rats. Unfortunately, legal guidelines prevent the Parish Council from handing out rat poison any more. Allotment tenants must respect the safety of other users of the allotment site and must not have firearms, including air guns, on the allotment site. Therefore, individual allotment tenants are responsible for getting rid of rats, but must not pose potential health and safety hazards by using firearms.