Sutton Lane Allotment Society Overview
Shrewsbury Town Council is the owner of the allotment site situated at the north end of Sutton Lane. Access can also be gained via a narrow pathway leading from Montague Place, and Buttercup Way, which is navigated off Primrose Drive. Shrewsbury Town Council has a ‘statutory’ obligation to provide the land as an allotment site, under the Small Holdings and Allotments Act of 1908, as amended by The Allotments Act 1922 and 1950. The Sutton Lane Allotment Site is recognised by the Local Authority as a ‘statutory’ allotment as defined under Section 8 of the Allotments Act 1925. This means that Shrewsbury Town Council must seek permission from the Secretary of State for communities and Local Government before ‘selling’ or changing the use of the ‘statutory’ allotment site’. The allotments have been in their current location since the 1970’s. The site consists of seventy-nine (79) plots which are made up of full plots, half plots and a limited number of quarter plots. The allotment site is securely fenced and further protected by two locked access gates.
There is a composting toilet (obtained following a successful lottery fund application). Three (3) small car parking spaces, and three (3) community sheds. There are a number of stand pipes and water butts for the express use of plot holders, although water conservation is encouraged. There is a waiting list for plots and this list is maintained by SLAS Membership Secretary.
Sutton Lane Allotments are managed by a committee elected by the members; representatives of the committee (usually Chair and Secretary) liaise when necessary with the Town Clerk and/or Operations Manager of Shrewsbury Town Council.
The SLAS financial year runs from 1st January to 31st December each year; with the Annual General Meeting being held in March. Rents and subscriptions are collected by the treasurer in January of each year. SLAS retains the subscription element.MEMBERSHIP OF SUTTON LANE ALLOTMENT SOCIETY
A new member will be required to complete a New Member Application Form. Membership subscription is decided at the Annual General Meeting in March each year and is currently £10.00.The rent per plot is as follows – 2023 (including the £10 membership fee):
Below are 2024 charges:
Full plot: no concession £65.00
Half plot: no concession £37.50
Quarter plot: no concession £23.75
Full plot: with concession £43.00
Half plot: with concession £26.50
Quarter plot: with concession £18.25Concessions are for tenants in receipt of state pension.
The age concession relates to members who have reached state retirement age, early retirement does not qualify. Other circumstances may make a concessionary rate applicable (e.g. If a member is registered unemployed), these cases should, in the first instance, be referred to the Treasurer.
All members will receive a membership renewal form annually to be completed, signed and returned with their payment confirming their agreement to abide by the Society’s rules. New members will need to complete this form at the time of joining.
You will be requested to comply with the Rules of the Sutton Lane Allotment Society and you will agree to cultivate and maintain your plot. Whilst it is accepted that not every member has the time to keep their plot in perfect order, all plots should as far as possible, be kept clean, tidy and under cultivation. If you are unable to do this for whatever reason, and you cannot make arrangements for the work to be carried out on your behalf, you should inform the committee in writing so that they can review the situation. If a satisfactory solution cannot be achieved it may be necessary to re-let the plot to someone on the waiting list. The committee has the right to conduct regular plot inspections to ensure that this condition is being adhered to.
A list of current committee members is displayed on the SLAS notice board and on the Your Committee page of this web site. If you have an issue that you would like to be raised, please contact a committee member, who will bring the matter forward for debate at the next committee meeting.SITE SECURITY
There are no designated public rights of way across the allotment site. The entrance gates and communal storage sheds are secured by means of combination padlocks and key safe system. The combination numbers of these padlocks is known to all members. The committee may change the combination in the future for security reasons. The member is required to secure the entrance gate/s after entering and leaving, by re-scrambling the numbers. The main access gates and all sheds will be kept secure with combination numbers scrambled. Never leave the site or buildings insecure. If unable to secure the site or SLAS building for whatever reason, please contact a committee member who can make arrangements for the site or building to be secured.SHEDS
If a member wishes to erect a hut, poly-tunnel, shed and /or greenhouse on their plot/s, they must consult the SLAS committee and neighbours before proceeding with its erection. The guidelines are that the proposed structure should be no larger than 6 square metres (a larger structure may be approved following consultation with the SLAS committee). The agreed structure will be sited at least 500mm (1’ 8”) from any path / boundary. The structure must not shade any neighbouring plots and will not have a concrete foundation. In the case of poly-tunnels they will be secured to the ground (Management Policy Document MPD 07 refers).COMMUNAL SHEDS
Smoking is not permitted in the sheds. There are three communal sheds which are linked. Shed (1) is the main community hut and is of concrete construction and situated in the centre of the allotment site. The shed is used for the storage of members’ tools and gardening accessories. Shed (2) is located at the north end of shed (1) and is also of concrete construction. The shed is used for the storage of SLAS equipment. Shed (3) is attached to the south end of shed (1) It is a wooden shed which is for members communal use.
Shed (3) contains a First Aid kit together with instructions on the reporting of an accident which resulted in injury on the allotment site. Members who use the facilities of Sheds (1) & (2), should ensure that their tools and equipment are clearly marked with their names and plot numbers. The SLAS committee accepts no liability for lost or damaged equipment when stored in these facilities or elsewhere on the site. ‘Wheely’ bins are available in which to store tools.TOILET
A composting toilet block is provided for members’ use. Instructions on the use of the facility are posted on the walls. Please ensure that you leave the toilet as you would wish to find it. The new member will be shown the location of various access keys during induction. Please lock the facility after use. Smoking is not permitted in the toilet.STANDPIPES & WATER BUTTS
These are distributed around the site for members to water their plots. All taps are fitted with universal hose connectors to allow hose pipes to be connected to them. The water butts, which are protected with substantial covers, are for the storage of water which is to be used on the plots. Members are requested to ensure the lids on the water butts are replaced to minimise algae growth. Members are also required to replenish any water taken from the butts. The use of hose pipes is allowed. Sprinkler systems or any other attached device to the standpipe will NOT be left on unattended. Water from the standpipe is metered, it is therefore requested that water be used sparingly and where possible use watering cans fed from a water butt this includes conserved water on site. The water will be turned off at the mains during the winter months to prevent damage to the system.SITE LAWN MOWERS
Two operational lawn mowers are kept secured in a locked shed on the site. A rota of volunteers is prepared the Committee regarding grass cutting of common areas on site. Training is given to the operative prior to the use of a lawn mower. The operative will be informed that ‘Sutton Lane Allotment Society’ has ‘Public Liability and Employer Liability Insurance’ cover, but that ‘Personal Accident Insurance’ cover is their own responsibility. Petrol and oil will be provided from SLAS funds.GRASS PATHS AND PLOT SURROUNDS
Members are responsible for keeping grass paths around their plots mowed/cut. The committee mowers are not available for this purpose. No barbed wire may be used on the allotment. Pets and dogs are NOT allowed on the allotment site.COMPOSTING
All members are encouraged to compost as much waste material as possible on site using compost heaps or plastic bins (designed for composting). It is requested that no compostable materials are removed from the allotment site.MANURE
Details of a local farmer, who delivers manure to the allotment site at plot holders request and expense, are displayed on the communal notice board outside the main shed. Members are encouraged to read the advice in the Notices section on the acquisition of manure to prevent unwanted chemicals being introduced onto the site.HEALTH & SAFETY
All aspects of site issues concerning Health & Safety are encompassed in Management Policy Document MPD 06.BONFIRES
Bonfires are permitted on the allotment site between the hours of 1500 and 2000 hours and between the months of 1st October and 31st April. (Please see Management Policy Document 02).ROYAL HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY
Sutton Lane Allotment Society is an associate member of The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS). The benefits of this body are varied and include organising insurance and providing support in cases of dispute.NEW SET-ASIDE AREA
The committee is working hard towards achieving a new area of ‘set aside’, which is being developed as an educational and wildlife site containing wild flowers and long grass to support insects, birds, frogs, and mammals. Hopefully, in the future, we will have a peaceful area under the walnut tree where members can sit and enjoy the birds and insects it will hopefully attract. Children, too will be encouraged to take an interest in the area.
Sutton Lane Allotment Society