Burnley’s allotments boom

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A REVIEW of council-owned allotments across Burnley will be considered by senior councillors.

A 31-page document outlining the results of the review and making a number of recommendations was approved by Burnley Council’s Executive Committee when it met last Tuesday.

“There has been a surge in demand for allotments in recent years,” said Coun. Jeff Sumner, Executive member for leisure and culture.

“The council is committed to making Burnley a better place to live, work and enjoy leisure time and allotments play their part in that.

“We need to make sure there is an adequate number of plots in locations where there is demand, within resources available, and manage allotments efficiently so they are self-financing but at a rent that is fair.

“We will continue to listen to and work with allotment holders and take their views into account as they play an important role in the running of the plots.

“The review set out where we are now, what we would like to do and how we can improve our allotments so they bring enjoyment for generations to come.”

An action plan will now be drawn up and Burnley Allotment Forum set up to oversee its implementation.

The council is responsible for 11 allotment sites across the borough, totalling 312 plots. The review found allotment holders felt plot sizes were “about right” and 87% felt rents were “fair” and good value for money.

The review also found a significant shift towards younger people (aged 31-45) wanting a plot.

Allotments bring a number of benefits, including:

l encouraging growth of healthy food;

l promoting exercise and relaxation;

l saving money on food,

l encouraging people to get out of the house and meet others with similar interests;

l environmentally friendly and sustainable.