New guidance aimed at sweeping away confusion around allotment law and helping get more communities growing their own food, has been published by the Federation of City Farms and Community Gardens and the Community Land Advisory Service.
The Allotment Law & Community Growing Factsheet, endorsed by the Government’s Department for Communities and Local Government, demystifies where allotment law applies to community growers and when sites become designated as statutory allotments.
There has been a surge over recent years in local people getting together to set up a community garden and grow produce – but many have been put off by laws governing allotment sites.
The new publication provides general information on various legal issues concerning allotments, current at the time of publication. It is aimed primarily at anyone that is thinking of setting up a new allotment or community garden site, or is concerned about how allotments law could affect their site.
Landowners wanting to put land into productive use by creating private allotments or giving their land over to a community gardening group will find it useful too.
FCFCG Chief Executive Jeremy Iles said: “We know that in the early stages of a community group’s development there are a lot of things that seem daunting and can easily dent confidence and progress. One of this is whether allotment law applies to a site. It can be confusing to people not familiar with property law.
But landowners too may find it mystifying for local authorities too. In particular, even if they would like to set up new sites, there can sometimes be some reluctance in case they can't then dispose of them easily.”
The document will be available to download from the Federation of City Farms and Community Gardens website, via: www.farmgarden.org.uk/resources
The contents of the new publication do not constitute legal advice, are not intended as a substitute for legal advice and should not be relied on as such. FCFG recommends that individuals or groups should seek legal advice in relation to their individual circumstances. Allotment law varies across UK countries, particularly Scotland. This fact sheet is therefore primarily relevant in England and Wales and while some of the general principles are applicable in Scotland, it would be best to check with SAGS in Scotland on any technical or legal matters, via www.sags.org.uk.