During 2023 – 2024 LESS will explore how allotments are doing across Lancaster District and current and potential plot holders’ dreams for allotment futures.

Are you an allotment holder or committee member?

Are you on an allotment waiting list?

Are you involved in some other form of community growing project in the district?

Are you thinking about starting a new allotment site or community growing project?

Or are you interested in growing your own food but don’t know how to start?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, you should feed into the allotment review.

What is the allotment review and who’s involved?

LESS is a not-for-profit Community Interest Company set up in 2007 to provide practical support to help the residents of Lancashire live more sustainably (lessuk.org). It is overseeing a review of allotments across Lancaster District (which includes Bowland, Carnforth, Halton, Heysham, Lancaster, Morecambe, and Silverdale) in liaison with North Lancashire’s FoodFutures partnership and Lancaster City Council.

The work is being done by LESS and a freelance researcher (Deborah Simmonds) and the initial review will be completed by 31st March 2024. The research findings will be shared with the FoodFutures partnership, Lancaster City Council, through an open public FoodFutures event and via articles in THRIVE magazine after the research is completed.

The review will be carried out independently with input from allotment sites and current and potential allotment plot holders and stakeholders across the district. The review will report on what has been found across the district and will share recommendations for supporting thriving allotments going forwards. This work is funded by the UK government through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

The review will look at several broad areas

  • The present provision of allotments, where they are, what’s going on and how they are doing?
  • What they have and what they are lacking? Training and other support needs?
  • Allotment governance – now and going forwards?
  • How allotments contribute to wildlife and biodiversity, climate resilience as temperatures and weather patterns change, food security with seasonal local produce.
  • The demand for potential new sites across the district and gaps that could be filled.
  • What’s happening on other community growing spaces in the district?
  • Future visions, recommendations, and strategies for supporting healthy thriving allotments across the district.

How to get involved?

Feed in by completing one of the following surveys by 20 November 2023. All completed surveys will be entered into a draw (one draw for each allotment site) to win a prize from a local food and/or gardening businesses.

LESS will be arranging allotment site visits, interviews with allotment committees and events throughout October – February.

LESS will host a series of community conversations in January and February 2024. Please keep an eye on the FoodFutures calendar (foodfutures.org.uk/whats_on/) for details of these.

If you have any questions or queries please contact allotment_review@lessuk.org

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