Friday, 20 March 2015

Obscured by Clouds?

Well not completely:

The Moon traversing the Sun

Dead centre, and moving on:

These pictures taken between 9:30 and 9:45 in Edinburgh

Saturday, 7 March 2015

Allotment Rent - Breathing Space?

  • Edinburgh allotment holders have experienced double digit rent inflation for nine successive years. (from £30 to £100)

  • Our Allotment Association (FEDAGA) arranged for this on behalf of their members.

  • The Council then proposed to triple the rent  to £300 as part of this years financing round.

  • 99 objections were received by the Council and an online petition was "signed" by over 2,000 people.

  • The Council anounced recently that the proposed increase is to be dropped.(HOORAY)

Here a personal "thank you" from me to those of you who I know assisted the Edinburgh allotment community through the online petition and raising awareness of the issue more widely.

On examination of the Council's consultation report it seems that:

3.26 FEDAGA contributed to the consultation and made a number of suggestions for ways the Council could raise additional revenues through allotments. All of these will be passed to the service, but examples included:

• A fee for being registered on the waiting list – given that there is a multi-year waiting list for allotments and an administrative cost of maintaining the waiting list;

• A joining fee for new allotment holders;

• A deposit for new allotments and for keys to allotment sites – refundable when allotments and keys are returned to the Council;

• Use of environmental wardens to issue fines for allotments which are not appropriately maintained;

• Providing only materials and land for new and redeveloped allotment sites, requiring those who want an allotment to provide the labour; and

• Recruitment of volunteers to manage administrative tasks for the allotments service.

So any idea that FEDAGA have woken up to their folly is gone.  They turned on their membership many years ago and it seems the habit of identifying their interest with that of the Council is a habit they can't shake off .  This is not fair on the current or prospective membership.


Monday, 2 March 2015

A St David's Day Leek

Yesterday was St David's Day and I went to the plot to dig leeks

They are not the sort of crop that you shout about.  Too small to bother about in autumn they have  looked rather tatty over the winter. But now they are coming into their own when little else is available.

Anyone for soup?