New row over Portsmouth allotment charges

From left, Jim Raper, Mike Hill, Tony Wilde and Brian Barnes. Fareham Beer and Cider Festival, Delme Arms, Fareham             Picture: Chris Moorhouse           Saturday 26th  May 2018         FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY PPP-180527-132937006

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A FRESH row broke out over increases in allotment charges.

Plans had been put in place to increase the cost of keeping land for fruit and vegetables that is 125sq m in area - deemed to be the average size - from £53.75 to £61.25 a year.

Councillor Linda Symes, Tory cabinet member for culture, leisure and sport, approved the proposals.

She said the rise only worked out at 14p a week, ensuring the service would almost be running at ‘full cost recovery’.

But Lib Dem councillors Gerald Vernon-Jackson and Lee Hunt brought the decision before the council again as they believe it needs to be rethought.

It was agreed in the end by the council that Cllr Symes would look over the plans again to see if an alternative can be put forward.

But Cllr Donna Jones, leader of the council, criticised Cllr Hunt for not being realistic and understanding the austerity programme in place.