Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Association of Bolton Allotment Societies

Meeting 8th September 2014


Membership Position


     Site                                                Paid-up members

     Sapling Road                                 40

     Clammerclough                             10

     Harpers Lane                                 70

     Florence Avenue                           50

     Smedley Avenue                            28

     Cemetery Road                             4

     Moss Lea                                       33

     Shepherd Cross St                         44

     Tonge Moor Rd                              29

     Tonge Fold                                     32

     Haslam Park                                  13

     Dealey Rd                                      22

     Settle Street                                  30

     Ainsdale Rd                                   31

     Lever Park (Horwich)                     25

     TOTAL                                           461


Rawlyn Road have also confirmed their membership of the Association.


Minutes of Last Meeting and Matters Arising

     The minutes of the meeting of 11/08/2014 having been posted on the Association’s website at they were passed as a true record


Matters Arising from the last Meeting

·        Buddies - the Council has agreed to have discussions with ABAS to set out some mutually agreed criteria on buddies’ succession rights

·        Definition of ‘Community Plots’ – the preferred solution would be to use ‘any plot being cultivated with the knowledge and permission of the Council for which no individual tenancy is issued’ and to interpret that in each particular case

·        Surplus Produce – the Council support the position at Dealey Rd. and will discuss with ABAS appropriate wording – they have concerns that too loose an arrangement could contravene the ‘Allotments Act’

     The Council do not feel that they can supply Tenants’ lists (with contact details) to Site Secretaries. Inability to contact plot-holders is proving a difficulty at some sites. The Council has said that in cases of mal-cultivation where a tenant’s address is not known to the Society, the Council will go to Stage 2 immediately.

     The Council is willing to discuss payments to Societies for carrying out functions under OMAs. However they have made the point “that the budget is finite and that OMAS allow the tenants to receive a level of service that is not provided by the Council elsewhere, and thus tenants benefit more than the Council.”

     Locks – the Council has reiterated its intention to continue to supply replacement padlocks. They are however considering moving to the use of combination locks


Updates from the Blog

     The Allotments Team has issued advice to Societies carrying out monthly inspections under OMAs after one society was challenged over Clause 2 of the new tenancy agreement which states that ‘The Council nor its agents will not enter onto any plot  for the purposes of inspection without giving 24 hours notice in writing’. Malcolm Russell believes that inspections can be done without going onto plots. Photographs etc. can be taken from the site road or the mutual access paths (and we would argue from adjoining plots with that plot-holder’s permission / consent)

     The Allotments Team has said that once a Stage 1 notice has been issued by a Society then the Society has three options after the ensuing 28 days inspection.

ü  Request the Issue of a Stage 2 notice by the Council

ü  Rescind the Stage 2 notice – if they feel that the plot is now up to standard

ü  Put the plot under ‘continuous monitoring’ under which the stage 1 notice continues and any lapse in standards leads to the immediate issue of a stage 2.


Points for the Review Meeting

     Dave asked societies to submit any concerns, issues etc, that they wished to see raised at the Review Meeting with the Council on 15/09/2014.

     Smedley Avenue had been told that in order to have an OMA they needed Public Liability Insurance. They do not have insurance as they have voted not to join the National. Terry explained that they did not need to join the National to get insurance and that he would send them details and get them an application form.


The Onion and Leek Show 2015

     ABAS is proposing to re-instate the Annual Onion and Leek Show for 2015.

     Terry told the meeting that ABAS is intending to hold the show on 27th September 2015. He would like Allotments Societies to sponsor the classes.

     The question as to why the show had been allowed to end was raised. Terry explained that a former secretary had tried to run the show without involving the rest of the committee, even the Treasurer being kept in the dark. He changed the venue without telling anyone and when people turned up on the day of the show to stage their entries they were told that the shopw had been cancelled. The Secretary then resigned, leaving the committee to clear up the mess. The next year no-one would enter.

     There was much support for restarting the event from the members present at the meeting. A number of site societies and individuals stepped forward to sponsor classes on the night.


Any Other Business


Issues from the Floor

Dealey Rd. had been asked by the National for a list of its members including their contact addresses. Terry stated that he had never been asked to submit such lists in all his years as Treasurer. Dave undertook to contact the National to find out if this is a change of policy or a simple error.


Date and Venue of Next Meeting

The next meeting will be on Monday 13th October. 8.00 p.m. Astley Bridge CC


The meeting closed at 9.00 p.m.





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