Some time ago I did some research into acquiring an allotment and found information on http://www.landshare.net/letsgrow/ that states all I need is myself and 5 other people who pay council tax to apply together and the local council should provide allotment space. I then went on to create a group on the website and since have been patiently waiting for my group to fill up. Today I was successful in filling my group with 6 members including myself, the last 2 members where acquired rather rapidly after putting a plea on facebook. After looking at my group and list of members I got slightly annoyed as I noticed 2 members of my group have postcodes that are a long distance from me. One is in Manchester and another is in York. Upon finding this I decided these members needed contacting to see if this was just a error on the site or if they truly don't live close to me. I have sent them a pleasant email asking them to confirm if they are interested or not and hope to hear from them soon. I am going to give them a few days to get back to me before contacting the website to try to get them removed from my group, as unfortunately there is no facility to remove members from your group. I hope they respond quickly but if not a back up plan is available. As I am facebook friends with 2 interested members I can easily contact them, another member of my group seems active and lives fairly close so I will contact him through the landshare site and try to obtain his details. I do have a couple of other people who may be interested so will add their details as well and then I should have 6. Then using the template on the landshare website I will send my own letter to the council. I have no idea how long it will then take for the council to respond and then how much longer it will take for them to act upon it. Hopefully I will have a allotment area before the end of the year or next year at the latest, I certainly want one before my daughter is old enough to help. She can even have her own little corner, away from my bees, where she can plant flowers and grow what she wants (or make mud pies!).
The reasons I want to have my own allotment is so I can have somewhere close to keep my bees and grow fruit and veg. I would also consider having a couple of chickens. Also a allotment is a good outdoor social activity. I have visions of all 6 plot owners working hard in the spring and summer and then towards the end of the growing year, when it is still warm and sunlight lasts into late afternoon, clubbing together and having a outdoor feast and drink using produce from the plots. I could provide the mead from the bees and by using outdoor stoves we could cook a pot of chili with a fresh as possible side salad and baked potatoes. I would also consider building a small outdoor clay oven so we could have outdoor baked flat breads or pizzas. I will try to keep putting updates on my success or failure in this matter.