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P J

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Everything posted by P J

  1. Even voting on this amount of increase feels like a kick in the teeth given the present economic climate most people have to endure. The recomendation should have been refused out of hand as it is,at best, overgenerous and more honestly stinks to high heaven of hypocricy. But it probably will be passed given that we can't get rid of them for 4 more years.
  2. Then perhaps it's time they were injected with a little dynamism. We live in hope.
  3. There is a great swathe of land ringfenced for Omega which I read will take 25 years to be developed, if at all. This land could be given a temporary allotment status with perhaps an agreement in place of a 12 month notice to clear site being given to plot holders, Surely a better use of the land than it just lying there waiting to be built all over. This is just one piece of unused land, all over the Borough there must be hectares of suitable ground not utilised for anything more constuctive than by the occasional dirt biker or kite flyer. Observer the community farm idea I forwarded to my councillor did involve the selling of surplus at proper prices to local people. I also think if enough food could be produced then a box of fruit and veg could be delivered free of charge to local pensioners who may wish to recieve it. I even went as far as trying to get a price on a couple of old electric milk floats with a view to providing a "box swap" venture where if participants collected their vegetable waste in a box it would be collected and composted on the community farm. In return they would recieve discount on any produce bought from the farm. All profits from the scheme would be put back into the local community as it would be a non profit making scheme in order to qualify for many of the grants available. I really feel this idea has merit. I will be trying my best to get something off the ground(or possibly in the ground is more apt)
  4. Cheers Baz, if I do succeed in getting an allotment the first bag of spuds is yours. As for financing, there are a great many grants available from other sources other than from council coffers, especially it seems for non profit making organisations which are concerned with local food production. Things like urban farms and community food assosiations etc. are eligible for millions it would appear. I identified a piece of land which would be perfect for this kind of project. It has stood unused for as long as anybody I know can remember. A couple of years ago it was going to have a road put through it and there were no campaigns to save it from development. The road was cancelled for other reasons but when I approached my local councillor with my ideas for this land it turned out that the council planning department had put a S.I.N.C. order (site of importance for nature conservation) on the area. Seems a little disingenuous considering it was going to be turned into a link road by the same people only 2 years before. A campaign would be great and if anybody knows any councillors could they try to get them onside. Paul.
  5. Thanks Gary, I do intend to campaign for allotments and any help is more than appreciated. Some of the overgrown allotments could be due to long term illnesses and this seems to be taken into account. The council officer informed me that the individual allotment associations now police the sites and report to the council as and when a plot falls into disrepair. I don't think they would be too happy to have an old friends plot taken away though. There was recently a cross party bill introduced to the House,the allotments(planning) bill, which was aimed at encouraging councils to make provision of allotments and to impose duties on developers to provide land for allotments. It is a ten minute rule motion giving a backbencher a chance to introduce a bill of their own. They may give a ten minute speach in support of their proposal but they rarely progress to become law but fingers crossed. Where I live in Callands our parish has made over 1000 acres of land available for development in the last few years alone but our whole parish has not a single square foot of allotment land which seems disgraceful given the amount of people living here and the obvious demand for such places. I know many people think of allotmenters as old men with cloth caps trying to outgrow each others prize marrows but it isn't the case anymore. Nationally the average age of people growing their own has plummeted and a great many children, including my own daughter, love to grow fruit and veg. At the least they will learn that if you work hard enough you will get results. With the price of food going up what seems weekly people will not be able to afford 5 a week let alone 5 a day and growing your own is inexpensive, healthy and good for the environment too. I really feel that allotments benefit local communities as much as any other amenity but sadly their provision in this town is woeful. Sorry for the length of the rant but as you can probably tell this is something I do care about. Any help or advice from anyone will be more than welcome. Paul.
  6. Well at least they seem to have put right this stupid decision to abolish the 10p tax rate. It's a start I suppose.
  7. I am one of the 335 people currently on the Council waiting list for an allotment. When you apply you are asked which allotment site you would prefer. I chose the 2 sites at Victoria Park and the one at Orford Park. I contacted the relevant Council officer today (although there is no actual allotment officer) to find out if things had progressed and to see how long I may have to wait for my plot. The best case scenario approximation of my waiting time turns out to be about another ten years for the first site, about 30 years for the second site and an inestimable amount of time for my third choice. Fair enough you may think as it?s not that high on many people?s list of important issues but when you consider that since 1908 it has been law that Councils must provide allotments it seems more than a little unfair. The actual wording from the act is ?Each allotment authority decides for itself how much of its resources to devote to allotments. However, if an authority believes there is a demand, it has a statutory duty to provide a sufficient quantity of plots and to let them to people living in its area. If local people feel there is a need for allotments which is not being met, they can get together a group of any six residents who are registered on the electoral roll and put their case to the local authority.? With this in mind would anybody who is on the present waiting list or one of the Parish Council waiting lists (Lymms waiting list is currently above 500) please contact me at allotments@lycos.co.uk and I will see if we can do anything to speed up the process. Many thanks in advance, Paul.
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