Allotment holders on newly created sites in West Lancs talk about the difference having a plot has made to their lives
West Lancs Community Food Growing Project aims to get more people involved in growing their own food and eating more healthily. We are working with local communities and schools to set up community food growing initiatives and providing help in finding the land (and funds) that might be needed.
Allotment Provision in West Lancashire
The project was started after a study found that West Lancashire was very poorly served by the provision of allotments, with the Borough only having 2.5 plots per 1000 households against a national average of 15 plots per 1000 households. The report, commissioned by NHS Central Lancashire and carried out by the Wildlife Trust in 2009, also found that there were waiting lists in most areas and particularly for allotments in the Skelmersdale area (where there are over 100 names on the waiting list).
By working with local communities since 2009, the project has helped to almost treble the existing number of allotments - from 107 to 301.
Click here for the printable list of allotment sites in West Lancs and their contact details.
By the end of 2010, 18 schools in West Lancashire were provided with help to set up their own community food growing projects. The work was led by the Red Apple Community Trust, with part funding provided by the County Council's Extended Schools Service. Each school also received training in the technicalities involved in setting up and running their project. Since then, the Community Food Project has been working with 5 schools in the most deprived areas of Skelmersdale to provide extra help in their gardening projects through our School Support Worker. The work was extended to a further 7 schools for 2012-13.
Fruit and Veg distribution project
In this final year of the Community Food Growing Project (to Sept 2014), we have shifted our focus to look at how consumption of fresh fruit and veg can be increased in the most deprived areas of the Borough. This project is testing the feasibility of a targeted distribution scheme supported by education sessions, to increase the uptake.
For the latest information on Community Food Growing activities, please see the CFG newsletters (below).
Click here to see the CFG Newsletters
Click here for Information Resources for Community Food Growing Groups
Click here for Funding Sources for Community Food Growing Groups
Click here for a sample constitution
Click here for a sample site rules
Click here for a sample tenancy agreement
Click here to read 'A Guide to Allotments and Planning Law'
Click here for a report on 'Show What You Grow' 2014: a celebration of school gardening in West Lancs
Click here for a report on 'Show What You Grow' 2013: a celebration of school gardening in West Lancs
'Veggie Faces' created by school children at the 'Show What You Grow' Celebration
(see report above for more information)