Saturday, 14 May 2011

Allotment Campaign

The poll about Cowling allotments is steadily creeping up to reflect current demand as word spreads through the village about our blog, it's great to see people showing an interest. At present Cowling Allotment Group has only a small number of those voters actually in the group.  Could we take this opportunity to ask any of those that have voted in the poll and are not currently in touch, to email us at the address below to declare an interest in joining us in our official claim for more allotments in Cowling.  Thanks for all the interest so far.

We'd also like to thank Cowling Chippy, Bains' Store, Premier Arms & Drystone Cafe for their support by displaying flyers, which should also be included in this months village newsletter.

We look forward to hearing from those of you who wish to join our campaign.

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Promising development for Cowling allotments

The parish council meeting was held last night and amongst the agenda was the issue of allotments.  It should be noted that the councilors paid considerable attention to public feedback on the matter resulting in what can best be described as a positive meeting for would be growers.  

In summary the PC acknowledged that the demand for allotments has gone well beyond the current provision and that a solution must now be found.  They accepted that Cowling requires somewhere in the region of 25-40 new plots to provide not only for current demand but also to cover further housing development and the expected rise in population.  The PC went on to raise the issue of compulsory purchasing and the consultation of parishioners regarding the siting of any new plots and propose to do this via a questionnaire. This may possibly be returned by hand at the shop, cafe or other method avoiding postal returns in the hope of maximizing participation by villagers.  The issue of the current use of the "Snowden" allotments was not raised at this time as the PC did have other business to attend to!

We would like to thank the chair, Mr Alan Perrow, for his handling of proceedings and attention to detail. We look forward to hearing from Mr Andrew Mallinson, Clerk to the Council, regarding a FOI request relating to the existing allotments which he acknowledged during the meeting; and thank the council for their consideration of points raised.  Emma would also like to thank the PC personally for inviting her to join the Allotments Working Group, which she is carefully considering at the moment.

Monday, 9 May 2011

Hello & Welcome!

Cowling - A picturesque parish of Craven District Council, set amid breathtaking Pennine countryside.

Welcome to the Cowling Allotment Group blog.  The Cowling Allotment Group are keen to work with their parish councilors to maintain the provision of well kept allotments in this steadily expanding Yorkshire village.  Currently the village has a small number of allotments though demand outweighs supply as more and more residents wish to embrace growing their own.

From 1970 to the year 2000, allotment gardening was in decline in the UK and demand fell by around 45% during this time.  No doubt helped along by the "Good Life", the rise of the supermarket and clean bags of uniform veggies!  This must have caused allotments to slip to the lower end of the list of priorities for busy local councilors across Britain during that period as demand dropped.  Unfortunately, we now find that where as in 1970 1 person in 100 was waiting, today that figure is 57 in 100!  So now we find that the requirement for allotments has outstripped provision as Brits embrace "austerity" in the form of higher taxes, creeping inflation, rising unemployment and soaring food prices.  The great British allotment once again has the opportunity to live up to its illustrious heritage - sustaining the taxpayer through difficult times.

But the produce is not the only benefit of growing your own.  As the nearby town of Todmorden has proved through their "Incredible Edible" initiative, growing vegetables can be a positive personal motivator too.  Community spirit rises as people come together with neighbours sharing produce and ideas; no doubt the local economy receives a boost too as people travel to the town to chat to gardeners gleaning insight and experience.  For so long we have complained in this country that community spirit is in decline, that we are becoming less and less healthy and yet here we have - at least in part - an answer.

Cowling Allotment Group hope to build on the long established allotment scene in the village and wish to further develop community spirit with the aid of our parish councilors. We hope this will be a success and another positive development for the village we call home.

We look forward to building closer ties with local gardeners and can be contacted at the address below.  Alternatively show your support by getting a free Gmail account and become a friend of this group blog by joining us via the friend list on the right.