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Finding a site

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Obviously the first thing you’ll need is a site on which to base your allotment. These can be hard to come by so you’ll need to think ‘outside the box’. Your first port of call should be the council or local housing associations to see if they have any unused land that they may be willing to lease out. However most councils may not consider certain unused land as possible allotment sites because of their location or the state they are in. You may therefore in your travels spy plots of land that aren’t particularly attractive or aren’t in very desirable areas, but with a bit of work these sites could offer a keen group of people a growing area.  The council will want to know that your group is well set up with a certain amount of organisation e.g. regular meetings, boards of trustees etc,  but they will be keen (in most circumstances) to oblige as of course the more people using their sites will benefit them.

A successful example of this can be seen in Bury at Philips Park. A new Incredible Edible (Incred Ed) group approached Philips Park ranger and staff directly to ask if there was any spare land that could be used for food growing, the answer was yes. So Incred Ed then contacted the manager of Bury green spaces and arranged a meeting. Now 8 months later they have transformed an area of Philips Park into a fruit growing area.. It can be done!

Once you have identified a possible site and the council are sounding positive, if this site is in a built up area the support and help of the local community is paramount.  Most communities will have committees, or Tenants and Residents Associations (TRAs) or a Parish council etc who will have regular meetings to discuss local issues. If this area is managed by a Housing Association (if unsure ask your council) contact them first as they will have strong links with the people you will need to meet. Or make direct contact with a member of the board of trustees (Chairman, Secretary…) and request that your proposal be added to the agenda for the next meeting. Then it will be a case of developing support for your project. The more people you have supporting your proposal the easier it will be for all stages of the project.

How do I find out who owns this land?

  • Wigan council have a facility for checking the land register which will identify whether the land you are interested in belongs to them. Wigan Council Website Land Register
  • If the land is not owned by Wigan Council you can try the government land registry website
  • Alternatively you can fill in a contact form and we will check the council’s land register to see if the site might be suitable for allotments - Go to contact page


I’ve heard about soil contamination in industrial areas. How do I know if the soil is safe?

  • Contact the local council (environmental protection department) to check the contaminated land register. Email ep@wigan.gov.uk
  • Follow this link to the Allotment Regeneration Initiative (ARI) guidance document on contaminated land.

 

Finding a site

Obviously the first thing you’ll need is a site on which to base your allotment. These can be hard to come by so you’ll need to think ‘outside the box’. Your first port of call should be the council or local housing associations to see if they have any unused land that they may be willing to lease out. However most councils may not consider certain unused land as possible allotment sites because of their location or the state they are in. You may therefore in your travels spy plots of land that aren’t particularly attractive or aren’t in very desirable areas, but with a bit of work these sites could offer a keen group of people a growing area.  The council will want to know that your group is well set up with a certain amount of organisation e.g. regular meetings, boards of trustees etc,  but they will be keen (in most circumstances) to oblige as of course the more people using their sites will benefit them.

A successful example of this can be seen in Bury at Philips Park. A new Incredible Edible (Incred Ed) group approached Philips Park ranger and staff directly to ask if there was any spare land that could be used for food growing, the answer was yes. So Incred Ed then contacted the manager of Bury green spaces and arranged a meeting. Now 8 months later they have transformed an area of Philips Park into a fruit growing area.. It can be done!

Once you have identified a possible site and the council are sounding positive, if this site is in a built up area the support and help of the local community is paramount.  Most communities will have committees, or Tenants and Residents Associations (TRAs) or a Parish council etc who will have regular meetings to discuss local issues. If this area is managed by a Housing Association (if unsure ask your council) contact them first as they will have strong links with the people you will need to meet. Or make direct contact with a member of the board of trustees (Chairman, Secretary…) and request that your proposal be added to the agenda for the next meeting. Then it will be a case of developing support for your project. The more people you have supporting your proposal the easier it will be for all stages of the project.

How do I find out who owns this land?

  • Wigan council have a facility for checking the land register which will identify whether the land you are interested in belongs to them. Wigan Council Website Land Register
  • If the land is not owned by Wigan Council you can try the government land registry website
  • Alternatively you can fill in a contact form and we will check the council’s land register to see if the site might be suitable for allotments - Go to contact page


I’ve heard about soil contamination in industrial areas. How do I know if the soil is safe?

  • Contact the local council (environmental protection department) to check the contaminated land register. Email ep@wigan.gov.uk
  • Follow this link to the Allotment Regeneration Initiative (ARI) guidance document on contaminated land.

 

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