A cutting taken from the Warrington Guardian on the 8th May 2003. 

A copy of an article printed in the Allotment & Leisure Gardener Magazine in Issue No.4. 2012 sent in by the Secretary of Battery Lane Allotment Association. Unfortunately the article had a coloured background and would not copy well.

BATTERY LANE ALLOTMENT SITE is situated in Woolston, Warrington it is leased to the tenants by the Parish Council, it is managed by them, but the Allotment Association has two meeting a year with them to discuss any work or repairs required. We have broached the subject of Self-Management; unfortunately this has not gone down well!

Janet has been on the site the longest, she took up tenancy in 1975 with her mother; she informed me that it was a field and they would go up and manage to dig one row across.  In the end as they were getting nowhere and a local farmer came and ploughed it over.

Vic is one of our oldest tenants he is 91, he took up tenancy in 1978. He has in his possession a copy of the Tenancy Agreement given to him, no buildings were permitted other than compost bins which could not be more than 2’ 6” high, at that time the allotments were surrounded by fields, no M6 – Junc.21, no houses just a pub called the Horse and Jockey and a Chapel.

It is a far cry from what we have today, the site has 89 Plots, a few historically full size but mostly they have been reduced to half size and also some smaller starter plots have been created. The site has been much improved with the help of a Lottery Grant, a Grassroots Grant and help from the local Council. The Car Park was constructed in 2003 and an allotment for the disabled with raised beds and a polytunnel was built in 2005 along with the purchase of a site toilet, at that time water stand pipes were incorporated, no more going with buckets to the River Mersey. The previous Secretary of the Association worked long and hard applying for the grants but of course the work would not have been done without the help of willing volunteers.

A second grant was obtained from Grassroots Grants to purchase a container which we have converted into a Site Meeting Hut with a storage area for items which have been purchased over the years by the Association such as Gazebos and Barbecues.

The previous Secretary unfortunately resigned, I had been acting as his assistant doing the typing for him so at the AGM I was asked to take over the job. I correspond with the tenants mostly by email although we do have a Notice Board for members who do not have a computer. We have a lovely site the tenants are so friendly, they are always willing to help with advice and we have many volunteers who help at our social occasions and on any working parties we organise.

We start the growing year off with a Coffee Morning when any new tenants can get to meet everyone, last year we held an auction with some tools that had been donated. Several members of the Association bake biscuits and cakes. We also try and make the AGM into another social event by finishing off with wine and a fine selection of cheeses from different Countries.

The big event of the year is the Annual Summer BBQ the Committee and volunteers cater for members and their families. We have a quiz, this year it had an Olympic Theme, a raffle and a Plant Sale. I class myself very lucky to be part of such a lovely diverse community with tenants from all walks of life, all ages and Nationalities.      

 

 

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