Meeting was attended by some 13 people from 7 Allotment Sites.
Apologies Dave Jackson (illness) , Terry Farrell (annual holiday)
We welcomed our Guest Speaker Mr John Woods FNVS who gave a interesting and informative one hour Talk on “Growing Quality Vegetables for the Table and Show Bench”. John will also be Judging at the Harrogate Show in September and our Onion Leek and Vegetable Show in August.
Following Mr Woods’ talk, the normal business meeting was held.
Minutes of previous Meeting
The minutes of the meeting on 11 April (as Posted on our Blog site) were agreed by our Members Present
Matters arising from the Minutes
Allotment Crime, - it was reported that there had been minor break-ins at Harpers Lane
The Secretary had reported no progress on finding a contractor /plant hire firm to work with
Abas Concerns Matrix
Points as mentioned in previous Minutes
Rawlyn Rd , no one present from Rawlyn Rd to provide an up date
Shepherd X Street no one present from Shepherd X Street to provide an up date
Florence Avenue , there has been no development regarding the Car Park
Harpers Lane have had no action on the Rat infestation
Smedley Avenue The Council were contacted about their OMA but no one present at
meeting to give an up date
Questions of the Meeting
Have all secretaries received up dated Waiting Lists? - Yes but a limited response from those present. NB Sapling Road reported that they had no-one presently on their Waiting List
Have Secretaries re commenced their Monthly reports and Plot Inspections? - Yes but a limited response from those present
Has Council reviewed / Commenced Eviction Notices re Mal cultivation or Non Payment of Tenancy Renewals, - limited response from those present
Moss Lea has there been any status update from Council regarding Individual Greenhouses, no but we were advised that the Secretary has done a Survey to determine who is interested in having a Greenhouse on their Plot.
Update on the Allotted Exhibition Market Hall 30th June
The Exhibition may be extended till the 7th Aug
Meeting advised two books are to be produced – the first being the images of the artwork,
the second essays, prose and poetry.
Up-Date on the Allotments Competitions.
Those present advised Judging will commence W/C 6th June followed by W/C 18th July
New Tenants Competition - regarding the question regarding whether the effective starting date should be the start of probation or the date a tenancy agreement was offered. Those present were advised that our opinion is that any prospective Tenant on probation should be allowed to enter, this will encourage and not restrict those entering,
Up date on Onion Leek and Vegetable Show
Those present were again advised that we were still seeking individual Sponsors for the 25 Classes. Florence Av to again Sponsor a Class at the Show
Up date on the Harrogate Show
Those present were again advised that if anyone is interested that they should contact Terry Farrell
Sapling Road expressed interest
Report back from NWCAA AGM Southport Sunday 24th April
Those present at our meeting were advised that Terry Farrell and Jeff Gibson attended the NWCAA AGM representing Abas and Minutes and details of what was discussed and are now on the NWCAA website.
Interesting opportunities mentioned to those present at our meeting were the Opportunities of the B&Q Wastage Scheme and the Tesco Bags of Help Programme
Best Allotment Competition again to be run this Year Sponsored by Maher's again this year Details on the NWCAA website
E-mail from the Allotments Section
The following points were raised.
1. Allotments are moving back to their office today so will have access to all their paper records and information again. The last few weeks have been a bit difficult.
2. Allotments have had complaints about smoke from fires affecting neighbouring residential properties, can all societies remind members of their tenancy agreement regarding Nuisance to other plot holders & neighbours. Allotments will be enforcing this rigorously if they get repeated problems.
3. Allotments have managed to make some progress with Cemetery Road, Kearsley and a number of Breach of Tenancy letters went to tenants last week. Allotments will be progressing offering plots over the coming weeks.
4. Allotments are in discussion with the local Councillors regarding making progress at Longworth Road, Egerton to address unmaintained plots and offer tenancies.
5. Allotments have a number of sites with no-one on the specific Waiting List so will be trying to identify anyone on the Waiting List for other sites who might be interested.
There have also been discussions with the Allotments Section as to the correct action for a Secretary to take should someone refuse the offer of a plot.
The current position (as understood by abas) is as follows:-
In our view there are three grounds for turning down a plot that would mean you should not automatically go to the bottom of the waiting list
1. Current and temporary incapacity - e.g. we had an applicant who was 8 months pregnant
2. Plot is too large or inaccessible in some way - and that the reasons for this are valid e.g. only some 4 or 5 of the plots at Harpers Lane are readily accessible in a wheelchair or a mobility scooter
3. The applicant is a buddy on an existing plot and is serving time either to gain a joint tenancy or to take over that plot
We don't think the statement that they wanted a larger plot is valid - policy has often been that you take a smaller plot, serve your apprenticeship and apply for a transfer when a full plot is available
The decision to keep the person in their current position on the waiting list would be communicated to the Allotments section via the monthly report (there is an appropriate section).
If an applicant disagrees with a decision to put them at the bottom of the waiting list then they have the usual rights of appeal.
Anyone now offered a plot is put on probation and therefore should be informed of the criteria and the date at which a judgement will be made
Florence Avenue have an Open Day Saturday 4th June,
Sapling Road have an Open Day Sunday 14th Aug
Harpers Lane have an Open Day on Sunday September 11th
Bolton Onion Leek and Vegetable Show is on Saturday 20th August. Further info regarding Show schedule available end June
Abas Allotment Competitions are to be judged in June and July with the Presentations and Prises on the 20th Aug
The Allotted Exhibition from June 30th to August 7th.
We need information about other events as soon as possible.
Meeting Closed at 9:50 pm
Date of next Meeting Monday 13th June 2016 8 pm Prompt
The Secretary would like to thank Jeff Gibson for stepping in to run the meeting at short notice and Carol Deplitch for assisting with the minutes.