Whether it’s the ongoing bite of the recession, or the influence of TV chefs like Jamie Oliver and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, growing your own has never been so popular. That’s why we applaud Havant Borough Council in its quest to find more land for allotments so more people can get a taste of the good life. It is looking to buy or lease land so it can get some of the 450 people on its allotment waiting list growing as soon as possible. That’s on top of the 704 plots over 14 sites that it already has. And along with finding its own land, it’s asking people with big gardens to offer part of them for use.
Hopefully, people will rise to the challenge the council faces and help out.
As environmentalist Ray Cobbett says, there’s plenty of land for homes, so why not some for allotments?
Some developers are including allotment land in their projects, which is a great step forward.
But having an allotment is about more than just getting people out in the great outdoors.
It gives them a piece of land to call their own, to nurture and transform and then, all being well, reap the rewards when the crops come good.
It can be good for the allotmenteer in many ways.
It’s hard exercise to get an unloved plot looking good, meaning the owner gets a good workout every time they visit.
With modern life leaving many people pushed for time, it’s a great way to combine keeping fit with a hobby.
And then when it comes good, there’s a glut of fruit and vegetables.
Another bonus in a time when we’re told it’s more important than ever to get your five-a-day.
So anyone who has land they can sell or offer should contact the council.
Not just because it will help them meet the demand, but because it will give more people the chance to get a taste of what it’s like to grow your own.
And that can only be a good thing.