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It is National Allotment Week

Sam_AlumniSam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,731 Disability Gamechanger
edited August 2019 in Coffee lounge
I love my allotment, I think it has helped me so much mentally as well as the joy of eating food I have grown myself. It can be a challenge for disabled people to get into gardening though and one charity who is trying to make a difference to this is Gardening for Disabled Trust.

basket of vegetables including onions lettuce beetroot

Gardening for Disabled Trust aims to help people back into gardening in spite of disability. We give out grants so that people can adapt their gardens and make gardening possible.  Our clients tell us that it can change their lives, enhance their well-being and help them defy their disability.

The charity is entirely staffed by volunteers.   Based in Kent, the Garden of England, we award grants to individuals and groups across the UK, and support people with all kinds of mental and physical challenges. We believe we are the only charity which does this.

The Trust exists to help people continue to experience the joy of gardening, despite disability.    We do this by awarding small financial grants to help applicants to continue to garden actively – or, as our founder put it back in 1968 ‘ to get the soil under the fingernails’.    Our most common request is for raised beds and planting tables: we often pay for accessibility ramps, handrails for outside steps, adapted tools, polytunnels and much more.  Sometimes we simply pay for the seeds or bulbs to get the garden going again.  We are all about actively gardening.

Check out the Gardening for Disabled Trust website here for blogs, information and inspiration.


Scope
Senior online community officer

Replies

  • izaiza Member Posts: 471 Pioneering
    Hi @Sam_Scope, I am looking for allotment available in East London from time to time. However, it is truly difficult to find any. On the existing once the waiting list are enormous and any free piece of land are taken by  construction sites to build new homes. I know that there are opportunities for residents to set up sometimes project on the estates but it is not the same like to grow plants independently on your own. Have a great day. 
  • Sam_AlumniSam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,731 Disability Gamechanger
    Nice to hear from you @iza - how are you doing??

    The following information is from allotment-gardening.org, do take a look at their site for lots of information and tips :)

    Finding an Allotment – How to Find an Allotment

    How to find an allotment plot

    Finding a vacant allotment plot can be difficult but with patience and persuasion you can often get one even if the list is officially long.

    In this internet age, most people will start their search for an allotment at Google but that’s probably not the best way. I’d suggest more traditional methods will be more effective. After all, the local site rep is more interested in his allotment site than web sites!

    Local Council

    Your local council is probably the best place to start. You might find information on their web site but telephoning is more likely to be of help. The receptionist should know who handles allotments but if not try the parks, recreations and leisure department first.

    Libraries

    Libraries are good sources of information – once again, ask a librarian rather than wander round. They’re highly skilled people who can find out the information you need or at least point you at it.

    Contact the Site Manager or Rep

    At this stage the idea is to find the location and contact details for the allotment site managers. Even if there is a waiting list for the site, it is still worth making a note. Check out if whoever you speak to knows of any other sites, perhaps church owned, self-managed, private or handled by a parish council.

    Once you know where your nearest site is, go round and visit. If every plot is occupied and in apple pie order, your chances are slim but if some are overgrown then you’re in with a chance.

    Check the Facilities

    Check out the facilities on offer, such as an on-site shop, parking, toilets and running water. Have a chat with any plot holders you meet to find out what it’s like there. Unfortunately some sites suffer from vandalism and it’s worth finding out what the risk is like in advance.

    If there is a waiting list, as there is with many allotment sites, have a chat with the site manager or representative. If they know you are keen and will make something of your plot, it’s surprising how quickly a site can come vacant.

    Telling him (or her) that you want to make friends with your weeds is pretty certain to make sure a plot never comes your way!

    You might consider seeing if there is someone on the site who is struggling, perhaps getting older and finding it hard to keep things in order. Offer to share the plot and help with the heavy work. You benefit from advice and the owner from younger muscles.

    If there’s a few plots vacant then the chances are the one you’ll be offered is the one in corner that’s covered in dumped rubbish. Site managers like to get those plots rented and cleared. Don’t be put off, rubbish is easily cleared.


    Scope
    Senior online community officer
  • izaiza Member Posts: 471 Pioneering
    Hi @Sam_Scope, thank you very much for your  advice and directions. I will keep my eyes open and I will still look around. In general I am fine. Summer is my favourite time as I can spend finally a bit more time outside. I take easy days , I read lots of books and I relax whenever I can. I hope you are fine too. Good to see you back here as well. Nice profile photo by the way. 
  • GettinOldeGettinOlde Member Posts: 495 Pioneering
    edited August 2019
    Land that had been used as allotments by locals for decades is being sold off by our council to companies for the development of 'affordable' housing.

    Resident joker - not to be taken too seriously ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
  • April2018momApril2018mom Posts: 2,869 Member
    Thanks! This is useful. 
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