Dalbeattie Community Allotments Association came into being at a meeting held in Dalbeattie Town Hall on 16 April 2008 which was attended by 19 people. From that meeting a Committee was formed to drive the Project forward, with the aim being, that Dalbeattie would once again have its own allotment site.
Over the next two years the Committee explored a variety of options to try to turn that dream into a reality, and although they encountered numerous obstacles setbacks and frustrations along the way, they were not deterred from their main aim of providing an allotment site for Dalbeattie.
The Association were given a huge helping hand when a local landowner, very generously offered an opportunity to enter into a long term lease on land just on the edge of town. The lease was to be for 25 years at £1 per year, and needless to say it was gratefully accepted.
On Friday 30th April 2010 the lease was signed, and on Saturday May 1st work began on the site.
‘People Power’ then took over and a remarkable transformation occurred. Through sheer determination, goodwill, and masses of hard physical work, an allotment began to emerge, and within six weeks we had gone from an empty field to an operational allotment, with members tending to their plots while still helping to develop the site for others.
It was that kind of community spirit which helped attract the attention of numerous local sponsors who helped both financially and practically, and an enormous debt of gratitude is owed to them all for the vital part they played. Of particular note was an extremely generous donation of £5,000 from the Rotary Club of Dalbeattie.
The original site consisted of 48 plots with an array of sheds, poly tunnels, raised beds and compost bins, all tended by people from the Town, but our landlord was so impressed with with what had been achieved that he offered us more land. We now have a site with over over 75 plots; reflecting the demand for this type of community resource.
We have also become something of a benchmark for other allotment projects throughout Dumfries and Galloway, and have been visited on numerous occasions by enthusiastic groups who would like to learn from our experiences and achieve similar success.
To provide this award-winning facility, (We won 'Stewartry Community Group of the Year Award' 2011) for Dalbeattie has been a remarkable achievement and one which has been made possible by the hard work, determination and generosity of not only those who have plots, but also local residents who have supported the project throughout each stage of its development.