Home   News   Article

'We need more council allotments in the Highlands,' Greens argue amid fears region left behind

By Philip Murray

Register for free to read more of the latest local news. It's easy and will only take a moment.

Click here to sign up to our free newsletters!
Highland Greens have called for the council to provide council-run allotments (stock image). Picture: ©eag1e – stock.adobe.com.
Highland Greens have called for the council to provide council-run allotments (stock image). Picture: ©eag1e – stock.adobe.com.

Providing council-owned and managed allotment sites across the Highlands must be included in the local authority's latest review, the region's Greens have argued.

They fear that working to establish independently-run allotments is holding the region back, with dozens of council-managed sites apiece in some of Scotland's local authority areas – but not one council-managed site in the Highlands.

Co-convener of the Highlands and Islands Green Party, Anne Thomas, believes there is a "strong case for a network of council-run allotments" and has urged them to incorporate provision for such sites its current allotments policy review.

She continued: “Other cities have council-managed sites: Glasgow has 32 sites, over half of which are council-managed; Aberdeen has 21 council-managed sites, comprising 544 plots; and Dundee has four council-managed sites. By contrast, there are no council-managed sites in the Highland Council area. And one of our members reports one community-run allotment site in Inverness has a waiting list of 98!

“And while we welcome the many positive stories contained in the council’s ‘Growing Our Future’ report, we are concerned that the significant demands of seeking to establish independently-run allotment sites may be a constraining factor on their development here in the Highlands.

“We were consequently disappointed that the public has not had the opportunity in the council’s current public consultation on its review of allotment rules and regulations to express an opinion on a council-owned and managed option.

“We have therefore called for a suspension of the review, and for a revised consultation paper to be issued, to include the option of direct management by the council, as we were originally told would happen; and then for this revised version to be considered by councillors before being reissued for public consultation.

“We fully endorse the council’s ‘Growing Our Future’ report, which recognises that community food growing can help support community empowerment, help deliver net zero targets and improve the health and wellbeing of our communities. We consider that the provision of council-run allotments across the region would significantly contribute to achieving those aims.

Do you want to respond to this article? If so, click here to submit your thoughts and they may be published in print.

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies - Learn More