1. ITV Report

Allotment users fear housing development

Allotment users fear land will be sold for development Photo: ITV Central

A survey released to co-inside with national allotment week shows that 74% of allotment users are concerned that local authorities will take their land away for building.

One of the sites facing such a possibility is the Forest Folk Allotments in Blidworth in Nottinghamshire. It is a 4-acre site that has been an allotment for 70 years.

Alan Baxter helped build a pig shed on the site with his brother in 1947. He said: “I remember this site before it were ploughed up for allotments. We used to play on it. It’s meant a lot to a lot of people. A one time there were some that wasn’t took but they’re all took now, they can’t get enough of them now.”

But all the history here could be coming to an end. Newark and Sherwood District Council need 350 new homes in the town and the allotment has been named as a preferred site for around 45 of those.

Council leader Roger Blaney has had an allotment for 30 years. He thinks the town needs the new houses and if they're not on Forest Folks Allotments, they'll have to be on green belt land.

The bottom line is there aren’t enough suitable sites within the village envelope that would enable the number of houses need by Blidworth over the next 15 years.

– Roger Blaney - Newark and Sherwood District Council

As the population increases, more homes need to be built and no one wants them in their back yard. But local people say if this site is covered in Bricks and mortar the history of this land as a community hub will be lost forever.