Pickles approves 59 allotment sales

Banbury Cake: Eric Pickles has been criticised for approving dozens of applications by councils to sell allotments Eric Pickles has been criticised for approving dozens of applications by councils to sell allotments

Communities Secretary Eric Pickles has approved 59 applications by councils to sell allotment sites to make way for development, it has emerged.

Mr Pickles refused just two applications; 10 are pending and 12 of the 83 submitted between 2010 and 2013 have been withdrawn, figures released under freedom of information laws show.

Local authorities are required by law to receive the secretary of state's approval to sell allotment land.

Guidelines from the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) say councils must provide allotment holders who are displaced with alternative arrangements, which should "ideally be within three-quarters of a mile" of the existing site.

DCLG said the data shows there were 152,442 plots in 2011 and 152,432 in 2013.

Hilary Benn, the shadow communities secretary, told the Daily Telegraph: "These are the green lungs of our communities and growing your own salad and vegetables is a good way of getting exercise, keeping costs down and helping family budgets. That's why they need to be protected."

Allan Rees, chairman of the National Allotment Society, told the newspaper: "The Government keeps complaining that there is going to be a food shortage in 20 or 30 years, and then they take all the land that people are growing on for development."

Communities minister Baroness Stowell of Beeston said: "Allotments are valuable community spaces that provide people with the opportunity to enjoy an active and healthy lifestyle, and we have put strong legal and policy safeguards in place to make sure that any unavoidable disposal is properly handled, such as providing replacement allotments.

"We have recently published guidelines that strengthen protection for allotments as well as introducing a range of measures to help communities who want land to grow fruit and vegetables."

Comments (3)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

1:26pm Fri 18 Apr 14

Class_War says...

Disgraceful , irrespo0nsible, short-sighted lunacy from Eric Pickles. We need MORE Allotments sites you plonker!!!!
Disgraceful , irrespo0nsible, short-sighted lunacy from Eric Pickles. We need MORE Allotments sites you plonker!!!! Class_War
  • Score: 2

1:52pm Fri 18 Apr 14

D Hoole says...

Horrible man, in so many ways.
Horrible man, in so many ways. D Hoole
  • Score: 3

2:00pm Fri 18 Apr 14

welshmen says...

That'll be enough to feed him then...what about the rest....
That'll be enough to feed him then...what about the rest.... welshmen
  • Score: 0
Post a comment

Remember you are personally responsible for what you post on this site and must abide by our site terms. Do not post anything that is false, abusive or malicious. If you wish to complain, please use the ‘report this post’ link.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree