Armitage with Handsacre Allotment Association
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Transcript of Armitage with Handsacre Allotment Association
Armitage with Handsacre Allotment Association
Armitage with Handsacre Allotment Association
Britain in Bloom 2012
Welcome Message from Chairman.On behalf of the committee and plot holders in the Armitage with Handsacre Allotment Association, (AHAA) we welcome you and invite you to share in some of the achievements we have made since the site was opened in April 2011.The last 15 months has a seen a green field transformed into a series of vegetable plots, and even more important a place where friendships have been formed and ideas exchanged.Jim BowaterJune 2012
2WHERE WE AREARMITAGE AND HANDSACREArmitage is a village in Staffordshire, on the south side of the Trent and Mersey Canal between Lichfield and Rugeley. Together with the adjacent village of Handsacre, it forms the parish of Armitage with HandsacreThe name of Armitage comes from the middle English Ermitage meaning Hermitage from a tradition that a hermit lived between the Church of St. John the Baptist, and the river Trent.Armitage does not appear in the Doomesday Book, although Handsacre does.How we beganAllotment plots were hard to find in the local area until a local farmer Paul Boston transformed a previously used paddock at the side of the canal, into a site of 102, 50x20 plots. These were soon snapped up by local residents with a keen interest of living a semi self sufficient organic lifestyle.PLAN OF ALLOTMENTS
May 2011 saw the start of many allotments.An Association is FormedOver the past year the plot holders discussed the importance of becoming an Association, to help and support each other to harness the enthusiasm of allotment holders and convert this into effective use of resources and skills for the improvement of the local community.A general meeting for plot holders was held at the British Legion in Armitage.We asked for a vote of interest in forming the Association. The vote was carried.
Time to start plantingThe CommitteeAt the meeting we also asked for volunteers to sit on the committee, comprising of Chairperson, Vice Chair, Secretary, Treasurer, Membership Secretary, Social Secretary, PR and two non-executive members.All of these actions were followed closely by Paul Boston and Local Councillor Steve Hyden
Starting to Grow
Armitage with Handsacre Allotment Association Constitution.Almost the first task for the newly formed committee was to prepare a constitution to be put forward for ratification by the members vote.The framework for our constitution was taken from the Constitution of the National Society of Allotments and Leisure Gardeners and adjusted to meet our needs.Parish CouncilThe newly elected Chairman and Treasurer of our Association, met with the local Parish Council to show our interest in supporting the local community at Village Fetes, Church events, School projects and any other matter of interest to the local and wider community.Looking good!
Logo CompetitionOver Easter we ran a design a logo competition at The Croft Primary School, Armitage.We were overwhelmed by the quality of responses from children of all age groups within the school. Five highly commended places were awarded to the best design from each year group. After great deliberation a winning design was finally chosen for use on all our stationery and other materials.THE LOGO COMPETITION
Chairman Jim Bowater with children from the Croft School holding their entries.Armitage with Handsacre Allotment Association HandbookIt was decided by the committee that we should gather information for association members in the form of a handbook.
The handbook was compiled by our secretary Carole Devine, with discussion from committee members.
Contents of Association Handbook.The ConstitutionInformation about Association Committee Members.Information on the National Society of Allotments and Leisure GardenersInformation on the South West Counties Allotment AssociationFuture Events Support from Local BusinessesA local training provider from Lichfield, Juniper Training gave their time to support less able bodied plot holders with some hard labour for a day. They toiled long and hard digging over numerous plots, weeding, painting sheds and even digging in manure!They asked for nothing in return but were happy to take donations for their chosen Charity Prostate Cancer, which were all gratefully received.
CommunicationThanks to the computer skills of one of our Committee members Chris Elston, the Association has its own websitewww.ahaa99.co.uk to inform members about the benefits of the Association and our current activities. It is also used to contact Committee members and keep in touch.
The Association is also publicised on the village website www.armitagewithhandsacre.co.ukWe also use this site to advertise forthcoming events.Communication continued.The Association is also publicised on the village website www.armitagewithhandsacre.co.uk
The Association has a twitter account with many followers (@ahaa99) with also a numbers of followers on Facebook.FinanceA brief overview of the Associations finances:Incoming.495.00Membership fees. 80.00 Village Fun Day Stall. 36.00 Raffle.Outgoing. 203.10National Association ofAllotments. 60.00 Association Handbooks. 48.00Association Banner 27.00Photocopying, stamps etc.
Balance.272.90The Croft Primary SchoolIn June 2011, pupils from the Croft Primary School accompanied by their teacher made a visit to my allotment plot. Their topic for the term was English Country Gardens and their teacher was keen for them to se the vegetable and fruit growing side of a garden as well as the flowers side.Twenty-five children were divided into three groups. Group one collected water from the trough down by the canal, and were able to see the permanently moored canal boat and its garden.
The Croft School Continued.Group two - armed with clipboards and pencils drew a plan of the allotment and the vegetables.Group three came with me and spent the time looking and identifying the different vegetables and flowers.At the end of the session I dug up my first new potatoes and the whole group had the experience of touching the potato and seeing how it had grown.Carole Devine.The Notice Board
The opening of the Associations Notice Board, kindly donated by Councillor Steve Hyden.
Our Community GrowsThe continued support and interest from Paul Boston and his family, has helped the plot holders become a sub community of our own within the allotment site itself over the last year.We have developed a sense of community spirit, sharing ideas and support for each other along the way. A beautiful notice board was hand made and funded by Local Councillor Steve Hyden, and erected by Steve and Paul Boston. Armitage Fun Day 23rd June 2012Our timing was perfect, for the bi-annual village fete.We were invited along by the organisers to help raise funds for our association.Our stand sold flower and vegetable plants donated by allotment holders.We also ran the following competitions:Guess the name of the knitted gardener.Guess the weight of the allotment cake.
28Armitage Fun DayMembers on our stall.
Guess the weight cake.
Its Your Neighbourhood!By working in such a small, close knit community, we came to hear about The Royal Horticultural Society, Britain in Bloom, Its Your Neighbourhood non-competitive competition.We all share a vested interest in a self sufficient lifestyle, focusing on getting to know your neighbourhood, recycling, composting, saving water, companion planting, scarecrows, encouraging wild flower growth, cross pollination and hedgerow development.Visit of Fran Lee. On Friday 11th May, members of our committee, Carole & David Perry Jim Bowater, Audrey Arscott and myself were very pleased to welcome Fran Lee on a visit to the allotments.Fran is the representative volunteer for Heart of England who are running, Its your Neighbourhood competition, which we as an association have entered this year.As we walked around the allotments we chatted and swapped ideas, such as the various way in which to organise plots either raised beds or traditional. Fran Lee Visit Continued.The building of compost heaps and how to conserve water.Fran made suggestions such as putting guttering on sheds that are currently in place to conserve water. Another suggestion was to plant wild flower seeds around the parameter of the field, in addition to companion planting on the individual plots to encourage the bee population
What a BeautyThe Marmite Moment!A difficult decision had to be made by a local resident. What would she buy her father for his 65th Birthday? He is the man who has everything! For the ultimate surprise she decided on doing the one thing he would either love or hate!As he is a keen gardener at home, she thought he would love an allotment (only because she wanted one herself!). On the morning of his Birthday , she gave him a special treat of being blindfolded and chauffeur driven to the allotment site, to be presented with a 50x20 plot of dirt, decorated especially with a balloon and ribbons. The Big Question?Would he love it or hate it?What do you think?!
Of course he loved it!
Look What Hes Achieved!
36Our Future PlansWe will continue to involve our members by holding regular open meetings throughout the growing season, as well committee meetings.We hope by next season to become more involved with the parish and perhaps plant up some of the village.We had hoped to extend a welcome to the allotment to clients from The Homestead and also Hawkesyard Priory this summer, but owing to the disappointing summer weather we have had, this has not been possible.
The Sight of SummerFuture Plans (2)We are now hoping for a warm sunny autumn when we will be