BHAF Newsletter
July 2014

Dear Allotmenteer,
Some of you may be aware of Brighton's City Plan which was rejected by the Government in late 2013. As a result, Brighton Council had to re-assess the Urban Fringe sites (which includes allotments) for their suitability for housing.
They have re-submitted this and all the current documentation is here:
The first two documents contain the majority of information, with the appendix showing detailed maps of proposed sites with potential for housing.

It can be seen that two allotment sites are under threat. Parts of Craven Vale and Mile Oak have been listed as having 'potential for housing'
Site 31 Craven Vale
Site 5a Mile Oak
Our Chairperson Emily has been told that
• Land highlighted as suitable for housing has yet to be approved by the relevant landowner(s) e.g. the Council, private landowners
• Decisions on Council land would be down to councillors
• In order to protect sites ear-marked for development, we would have to demonstrate their unsuitability - e.g. through protected species habitat etc. The demand is recognised, so it's unsuitability of the land that we must focus on
• Any allotments would be 're-located' not lost. Despite this plan being in the very early stage, it still presents a large concern for our plot holders at both Craven Vale and Mile Oak.

Relocation is not a very good prospect if you have spent many years building up fertility on your plots. Many plot holders will have fruit trees and other perennials that cannot simply be moved. Also accessibility will become an issue if the plots are to be relocated. Allotments should be as close to where people live as possible, and in all probability the relocation site will be a lot further away.

Plot holders at Craven Vale and Mile Oak are encouraged to email their Councillors and also Cllr Lizzie Dean who is the Councillor responsible for allotments. BHAF will be raising this issue at the Liaison Group meeting on 22nd July to express its concerns.
Despite previous concerns, allotments at Roedale Valley, do not seem to be under threat. See Site 18 in the appendix

Vic Borrill has also released a statement from The Food Partnership;
Allotment Forum (formerly Site Rep Meetings)

Wednesday 17th September 2014 6.30pm Surgery, 7.00pm Main Meeting
Wednesday 14th January 2015 6.30pm Surgery, 7.00pm Main Meeting

Patcham Community Centre, Ladies Mile Road, BN1 8TA

The Allotment Forum is open to all plotholders and stakeholders. All site reps are expected to attend as part of their role. Members of the Liaison Group (BHAF and BHCC) will offer a progress report on action points from the Allotment Strategy, and answer any questions.

The surgery starts at 6.30pm to address individual queries.
The main meeting begins at 7pm to deal with broader, common concerns.

There is free parking at the centre and on surrounding roads, and buses 5 and 5A are frequent and stop very close by (The Ladies Mile stop).

This is a great opportunity to find out what's going on, how you can get involved and share your thoughts and ideas!
Working groups
As part of the ongoing action plan of the allotment strategy, we are planning to form two working groups whose job it will be to look at;
Site Reps Role Definition
Rules Revision.
If you would like to volunteer to help on either of those working groups, please get in touch at
Development Fund
Brighton and Hove Council allow a budget of £6,000 per year for spending on projects at allotment sites under the Site Development Scheme.
The process is that site representatives or plotholders (in conjunction with their site reps) can make an application to The Brighton and Hove Allotment Federation who will review these and forward the succesful bids to the council for the funds to be released.
The Federation are looking for projects which are for the benefit of all allotment holders and improve an allotment site. If you have any ideas then please contact your site rep and put together an application.
The application forms and details of succesful bids can be found here.
The Resource Centre have a list of other funders that are particularly useful for small community groups based in Brighton & Hove. Some of them also fund organisations in other areas. This list is particularly useful for Allotment Associations.
Dig Whitehawk
We are busy gearing up for the Dig Whitehawk 2014 Open Day which is taking place on Saturday 23rd August 2014. This is a free event for families and people of all ages. The Open Day will be exploring Brighton’s Stone Age past, the ecology of Whitehawk Hill and its wider downland environment, and local history. Visitors will be able to tour our excavation and find out how we are improving the site.
Potato Blight
One of our members recently wrote to us, raising the important issue of potato blight and our responsibility as growers to ensure we do all we can to reduce its spread or indeed inadvertently breed a more dangerous version.

Below is an article from a year or two ago and there is also a link to two papers on managing blight and best practises on the BHAF website. It is most important to remove and burn blight ridden haulms, and please make sure that at the end of the year you did up and remove all the plants and tubers.
Allotment History
We are in the process of gathering information about the history and heritage of Brighton and Hove allotments.  If you have any interesting stories, facts, pictures or documents that you would be happy to share, please get in touch!
Sad News
It is with sadness that we have to announce the passing of John Allam, long time chairperson and site representative of Moulsecoomb estate allotments. John was also an honourary president of Brighton and Hove Allotment Federation.  Our condolences go to his wife Pam and family. He passed away at home on Tuesday 17th June.

John was a much loved and respected member at the Moulsecoomb allotment site. A dedicated and committed allotment gardener and keen potato enthusiast, his presence, wisdom and enthusiasm will be greatly missed.
Save Farm Terrace
The campaign to save farm terrace allotments in watford reaches a crucial point next week with an appearance at the Royal Courts of Justice next Friday 25th July.
Watch a BBC Inside Out video showing both sides of the story.
Visit the Save Farm Terrace website.

Happy Growing!
The Federation Committee.
Brighton and Hove Allotment Federation