By Anne Akers
It’s been National Allotments Week, with sites all over the country opening their gates to welcome visitors and show what’s growing and how to grow it.
Gatescroft Allotments in Calverley held their open day last week, showing visitors around the Carr Road site where there are 55 allotments, including a handful of raised beds specifically for people with mobility or other needs.
The site is one of 101 allotment sites throughout Leeds, which are either managed by Leeds City Council or self-managed, Gatescroft is self-managed so anyone wanting an allotment there has to join Calverley Horticultural Society (£4 a year). In West Leeds there are about 20 sites plus several privately-owned sites.
Allotments are in demand and, according to the council’s website, there are currently no vacancies, with waiting lists of a couple of years depending on what people want and where.
The allotments come in different sizes, a full plot is 250m2, a half is 125m2 and a quarter 63m2.
Annual rents from October this year are £76.38 for a full, £38.19 for half and £19.24 for a quarter. In addition, some sites charge for water supplies and other services such as grass cutting.
Allotment holders must cultivate at least 60 per cent of their plots, with the remaining area used for sheds, flowers and grassed areas. They are also responsible for keeping the plots tidy and they are inspected regularly. Some sites allow livestock.
For more information on joining waiting lists, visit the council’s website.