Help protect the UK’s allotment sites
This petition had 14,740 supporters
Councils across the UK are currently selling off allotment land to developers, and if we don’t act now we will see these special plots of land slip away from us. Many allotments are on land that has become valuable and the last few years has seen a disturbing trend where councils have increased requests to deregulate allotments in favour of property development that do not always best serve local needs.
Between 2007 and 2013 the government only turned down 4 applications out of 199 to close allotment sites according to a Freedom of Information. I’ve personally been one of them as I battled to save my allotment site as part of the Farm Terrace allotments of Watford. Despite winning two court cases on the matter, Watford council has submitted a third request to deregulate our much loved local allotments -- they won’t stop until they get their way. We have to protect precious land before it’s too late and the Councils strip them away.
Allotments have been a vital part of the UK since Victorian times and have provided communities with a means to grow food whilst enjoying the health benefits that gardening and organic food provides. They hold an important place in UK history and played a vital role in wartime in providing food. They are a key part of the early British notion that every citizen is entitled to a piece of land to feed their families.
The council says that even though the criteria for building on allotments are not met, they should be allowed to do so because of ‘exceptional circumstances’. The exceptional circumstances are that the development will generate money. The Government have deregulated allotments, giving councils power to build on them, to make a few pounds without regard for what is good for local areas.
I believe that allotment sites across the UK require MORE protection, not less. I’m calling on the government to review the criteria to deregulate allotments and tighten it in favour of the protection of allotments. They provide valuable green space and much needed community gardening access in built up areas.
Please sign this petition and help us prevent allotment sites from being consigned to the history books.
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Sara-Jane Trebar needs your help with “Eric Pickles, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government: Help protect the UK’s allotment sites”. Join Sara-Jane and 14,739 supporters today.