Celebrations after lease is signed for Hawkinge allotment site (Photo)

Contributed by editor on Mar 23, 2010 - 08:40 AM

By Eileen Blythe
Members of Hawkinge Allotments Society gathered together on Sunday to celebrate the signing of the 30 year lease granted by Shepway District Council for the first village allotment site.

The Allotment Society with the Parish Council has worked very hard for the past 5 years to find a suitable plot of land for the 50 members keen to have a suitable site to grow there own food.

Shepway District Council announced that land off Stombers Lane would be available for allotments in July 2008, and in December 2008 the Parish Council resolved to allocate £10k of Section 106 monies allocated to the Parish to help get the site started with new fencing, lockable gates and car park.

Celebrating the signing of the lease

The 15 months spent waiting for the lease, has been very frustrating, but has been put to good use to raise more external funds for the basic infrastructure and to establish a close working relationship with the landlords, the Parish Council.

None of this could have been achieved without the help and support of County and District councillors, Susan Carey and David Godfrey, Parish Clerk Tina Wiles, and the local Whitecliffs Environmental officer Steve Walker, Rural Kent’s funding department and the financial help from various grant giving organizations in the county, including Shepway District Council and their Community Chest, The Hawkinge Parish Council, The Hawkinge Partnership, Rural Kent, North Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Unit, Kent Community Foundation, Kent County Council small capital grants fund and council members fund.

Members have spent many hours removing rubbish, cutting back overgrown hedges and marking out the plots, and now look forward to start work on their plots on the 1st April 2010.

© Hawkinge Gazette and Channel Coast News 2010