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Wapping Allotments Association 2nd Meeting

Wapping Allotments Association 2nd Meeting

20 people attended the second meeting of the Wapping Allotments Association yesterday, Wednesday 2nd November which was held in the Turks Head Cafe and chaired by Jon Aldenton.

Back on 19th October, 65 residents met and voted unanimously to create the Wapping Allotments Association when they also elected a steering committee of 16 local residents.

1,000 signatures needed

Completed petition forms were collected and Jon estimated that these contained around 200 signatures in support of the allotments proposal, but said that in excess of 1,000 signatures would be needed.

Jon said that at the initial meeting 16 people had volunteered to be on the committee and they had voted Karen and Amanda as secretary and treasurer.  Jon suggested a £5 membership fee and handed out forms.

How long is a rod?

Discussing the two potential sites Jon said that the Vaughan Way site was approximately 6,400 sq m in size. A standard allotment size is 10 sq rods (1 rod = 5 ½ yards) and so the site could provide 25.6 full size allotments, however it might be best to split each of these into three. This is common practise.

Jon went on to say that the Sam Smiths site opposite the Captain Kidd is not actually owned by the brewery but by a private company owned by a Mr Humphrey Smith.

It was suggested by Jon that members should write to both the Mayor of Town Hamlets and Mr Smith with respect to using the respective areas of land for the allotments.

Charity funding for conversion possible

Jon also explained that it was not known at the moment how much it would cost to convert a vacant piece of land (be this Vaughan Way, the brewery site or elsewhere in Wapping) into an allotment and that a proper feasibility study would need to be carried out.

However it might be possible to get a grant of up to £10,000 towards this work from the Awards for All organisation.

Other questions were about the need for toilets on the site and fresh water. Options for the former are a compost loo or septic tank and for the latter possibly a bore hole, an abstraction license for this would be needed from Thames Water.

Community Food Garden “Dig In”

Jon suggested donating the Turks Head Café Community Food Garden to the Wapping Allotments Association and the proposal that a ‘dig in’ next Sunday at the Garden between 10am and 12pm was agreed.

Turk's Head Food Garden Sign at the Turk's Head Cafe - Wapping

 

Next Wapping Allotments Association meeting

A date for the next meeting was not set, but it was suggested this be held after a response from the Mayor. The open session of the meeting ended at 7.25pm and the committee members stayed to discuss further business.

For more information please contact Jon Aldenton 07970 265966 or Amanda Day 0207 488 6801 who can be reached via email at turksheadcharity@gmail.com. Contact Colin Hampden-White 07941 126747 londonjournalist@gmail.com for press information.

Update 26th May 2012 – application rejected

An application to use the Vaughan Way site for allotments was made to Tower Hamlets council supported by a 1,000 name petition back in January. Tower Hamlets council rejected the application and told the Turk’s Head that the land may be used for a car park for a swimming pool, but have been asked to reconsider.

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  • http://twitter.com/Docklandsboy Terrence Stamp

    I suspect the allotment assoc would have to go with the Vaughan way site. The sam smiths carpark one has had a lot of work done on it in the last few months and it looks very much like the owner is actually planning to do something with it. The ‘wildflower meadow’ has been cut down and a new fence put across the site diving the sam smiths carpark from the back section alongside Old Tower Buildings. neither area alone is really big enough to support many plots. 

  • http://twitter.com/baynesmark Mark Baynes

    Maybe it is on the Turks Head website?

  • Anonymous
  • http://twitter.com/ShredniVashtar ShredniVashtar

    Some people in Wapping already have allotments – which are on the other side of the Highway in Shadwell. Presumably the Wapping Allotment Assoc is open to them too? I imagine some of these might prefer a plot nearer home down in Wapping ‘proper’.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_4BYMDL6JR76M4PYV6V4IP6ES5I Josephine

    Where can I sign the petition? Turks Head?