London's oldest surviving allotment is facing the threat of being built on thanks to plans by its landlord to construct a new housing development on part of the allotment site. 

We desperately need to raise funds to pay for legal and specialist advice to help save our much loved allotments. 
If you can spare just a few pound we would be very grateful for your help and support.

Our Halloween Pumpkin Trail will be on Saturday 28th October 2017 from 3.30pm - 7.30pm. Please come along to see this wonderful place and enjoy the spooky fun.

https://www.gofundme.com/ealingdean

In early September 2016 the charity, Pathways, contacted plotholders at Northfield Allotments in Ealing to announce its proposal to build on 10% of the allotments. The development would include a five to six story block of social housing and four houses for sale to help fund the development.

Northfield Allotments are the oldest allotments in London. They were given by the Bishop of London to the people of Ealing in 1832, and are held as a permanent endowment. The charity Pathways is our landlord and the site is managed by a committee of seven plotholders. There are 141 plots.

OUR COMMUNITY

The plotholders are a diverse range of ages and nationalities. Twenty nine of our plotholders live in flats – this is their only garden. We have around 50 children who have a safe place to play and learn about fruit and veg and get a chance to see tadpoles, stag beetles, bats and hedgehogs.
There are more than 25 pensioners who have a place to grow their own food and there is always company, someone to talk to. You are never alone when you have an allotment. People are friendly here and we share seedlings and produce.

We have counted 27 different nationalities – the only qualification to getting a plot is a love of gardening and the patience to wait on our waiting list (currently 72 people).

OUR WILDLIFE

The hedgerow around the site is around 900m long and has been designated, by Ealing Borough council, a SINC - Site of Interest for Nature Conservation. It is an important and safe habitat for our hedgehogs, many nesting birds and insects. The allotments are a habitat for stag beetles, which are endangered and protected. With perfect timing the many visitors to our Halloween open day saw our bats flying around the site catching night flying insects.

NO CHOICE?

On the 25th September at a special general meeting, the plotholders unanimously voted to oppose Pathways’ plans to concrete over the allotments.
We understand that social housing is important – but so are green open spaces. It shouldn’t have to be a choice of one or the other. We believe Pathways’ trustees have not fully considered alternatives to their proposal to ‘temporarily’ move 18 residents into what will be a permanent development on the allotments.

We believe a permanent endowment should be permanent.

OUR CONCERN

The original allotments were much larger than they are today: 60% of the allotments were lost in the 1970s due to compulsory purchase by the council and building by Pathways. Our concern is that if planning permission is granted this time around it will be easier to lose more allotment land in the future as the pressure for housing so close to a Crossrail station increases.

When we lose green space we never get it back.

WHAT CAN YOU DO?

  • Please write to your local councillors to let them know what you think of the proposal.
  • Write to the Ealing Gazette and Ealing and Northfield forums.
  • Sign up for our newsletter to keep up to date with what is going on.
  • We need specialist help, especially once the plans are submitted to Ealing Council. This will cost money. So, please help by donating whatever you can to our fighting fund.

Please help us protect the allotments for another 184 years.

Many thanks for all your help and support.

The Ealing Dean Allotment Society.

I’m going to leave the final word to Fran, one of our plotholders (who will lose her plot if the development goes ahead)…

“My allotment means a lot to me - we live in a third floor social housing flat with no access to a garden of our own. In 18 months my daughter and I have transformed the plot from weeds and brambles to our own little patch of heaven and my daughter has learned so much she never would have been able to before, from where our food comes from to the lifecycle of the frog - and she now wants to be a gardener when she grows up.”


If you've ever walked past the allotments and wondered what sort of people we are, this is for you. Now there are quite a few of us so as not to overwhelm you, we'll do it one by one. Going first is Francesca, Fran is also one of the brains behind the Halloween Pumpkin Walk on 29 October, so she a good person to start with.

Tell us about yourself

Plotholder Profile - Starting out

Ealing Dean Allotments have 141 plots and, although we all look after our own plots, the Committee is responsible for the overall maintenance of the site, including the paths, fence and hedge surrounding the site.

To keep on top of this work, we have Volunteer mornings on the first Saturday of each month (except January!) where plot holders, people on the waiting list and interested locals come together to sort out whatever it is that needs doing.

Ealing Dean Volunteer Day

Northfield Allotments, in Northfield Avenue, Ealing, is opening its gates for its first Autumn Open Day on Saturday 29th October from 3.30 to 7.30. We’ll be celebrating Halloween with a pumpkin trail around the allotments.

There will be our usual delicious home made cakes, but, to warm you up, there will also be a BBQ, hot soup and mulled wine. We’ll be running a raffle and tombola - with apple bobbing and toffee apples for the sweet toothed.

EDAS Halloween event

On Sunday 25 September, the Ealing Dean Allotments Society (EDAS) called a Special General Meeting (SGM) for all plotholders at Northfields Allotments to discuss the proposed development by Pathways on the allotment site. The plan to construct a mix of social and private housing, including a five or six storey building is expected to result in the loss of 10% of the allotment site.

Ealing Dean Allotment Society SGM Save Northfields Allotments - Unanimous vote by members to oppose Pathways' development proposals for Dean Court Ealing including building on Northfields allotment site

London Live visited the allotment site to discuss with us our opposition to the proposed development. Their bulletin can be viewed here:

I created a couple of history signs in time for the open day. Actually there are a few of them dotted around the allotments but the two i will highlight today were the most recent ones i have created. The information was found in the London Metropolitan Archives by Paul McConnell when he was researching our history and come from the minutes of old allotment committee meetings that took place in the nineteenth century.

PRESS RELEASE

9th September 2016

London's oldest allotment faces development threat

The oldest surviving allotment in London is facing the threat of being built on thanks to plans by its landlord to construct a new housing development on part of the allotment site. 

Last week all plotholders at Northfields Allotments on Northfield Avenue in Ealing were informed by their landlord, Pathways, that it intends to build on 10% of the allotment site. Pathways plans to construct a mix of social and private housing, including a five or six storey building, and has opened consultations on the plans.

A picture of the potager during the open day, with the chance sit and look at the plants around

A picture of the potager during the open day, with the chance sit and look at the plants around

We have created two history videos for the allotments and surrounding area.

The first video is the "History of Northfield Allotments" or to give the allotments their earlier name Ealing Dean Common Allotments

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