As this week, 10th – 16th August, is National Allotment Week, we thought it would be a fantastic time to share the progress at Avonpark Village, where the residents have been hard at work restoring the allotments.
National Allotment Week is designed to emphasise the benefits that allotments bring to everyone regardless of age or gender and to also highlight the fact that we need to value our remaining plots and preserve them for future generations to enjoy.
Please read on to find out how Mrs Wood and her fellow Avonpark residents, transformed the neglected allotments into a beautiful and enjoyable area.
At Avonpark, the ten allotments were in a very poor state when we decided to try and do something about it. Two of the residents, Mrs Bramall and Mrs Stainthorpe had been doing a noble job in trying to keep the plots cultivated but without help they couldn’t take it any further.
A previous contributor was about to move away and, as a result, we inherited from him – amongst other things – a collection of water butts, a wheelbarrow and a blueberry bush!
Mrs Stainthorpe and I decided that a starting point to restore the area was to buy a shed. An absolute must! Once this was erected we were able to put up guttering around the roof and made use of those water butts.
Several neighbours donated garden tools and with the tremendous help of Narja McKechnie, a lovely young New Zealander, we managed to get all the plots into a usable condition. We then set about building a patio area and a rockery.
Interest was running high and, as a result, we ended up with a waiting list for the available plots.
Getting the patio built and furnished, repairing both the fence and steps in order to make it safe to walk through, was not free. Fortunately, our village neighbours, who had shown plenty of interest in holding plots, all put their hands in their pockets to contribute towards those costs.
Together we have grown a variety of vegetables, -peas, broad beans, beetroot, potatoes, spring onions, Swiss chard, leeks, lettuce, courgettes, purple sprouting, sweet corn, tomatoes, runner beans, garlic – to name but a few. We also planted four apple trees, donated by one of our residents, and another person erected a fruit cage complete with raspberries and blackcurrants.
We also created an area with pots creating an excellent display of bulbs in the springtime. A few of the allotment holders also have also grown sweet peas, which were a huge success.
We are very proud of what we have all achieved during the last eighteen months. We have received lots of compliments from residents at Avonpark, who enjoy walking through, and relaxing on the patio.
Deanery Walk, Avonpark Village