Article from the Northamptonshire Evening Telegraph, 23 November 2010, by Clive Whittingham
The trend for growing your own vegetables is putting pressure on allotment associations.As more people turn their back on mass produced vegetables, associations are finding it tough to accommodate all the budding gardeners
The problem is particularly acute in Burton Latimer where people face a two-year wait for a plot and the association is asking the town council to find it some more land.
Burton Latimer Allotments Association secretary Martin Turner said: “The main problem is securing land on a longer term lease. It would be a total waste of time to take a piece of land for only a year or two.
“There is a clamour for plots all over the country. People have decided they want to get exercise and grow their own vegetables it’s going back to how it used to be.
“When I started as secretary 25 years ago we had 22 plot holders and now we have 65 gardeners with 13 on the waiting list.
“I’m getting requests for plots all the time people are on the waiting list for two years before they get a plot.
Mia Grainger, a working mum who holds a plot at the allotments off
with three friends, said: “We have had the plot for over a year, and we had to wait for a year to get it.
“We live next door and watching people coming and going with wheelbarrows of fruit and vegetables encouraged us.
“It’s tough going sometimes but you can’t beat the flavour of the stuff you pull out of the ground.”
DIGGING IN - Lisa Roberts, Mia Grainger, Caroline Finn and Helen Sanders
with Jack Grainger, seven, and Ellie Grainger, five
Mayor of Burton Latimer Cllr Maureen Jerram said: “The town council is working with a two-pronged attack on this.
“Cllr Ruth Groome is asking what can be done through Kettering Borough Council. We are also trying to make an agreement with lease holders of neighbouring land.
“I desperately want to help. The best scenario is to look at land adjacent to the site but we would be willing to look elsewhere.
Kettering Allotment Association chairman Brian Mitcheson said: “We have a waiting list that just seems to keep growing.
“On our smaller spaces people have to wait longer, but at the bigger sites people are waiting three months.
“We are giving people half plots, just to get them started.”