New deal to secure allotment site in Honiton

Honiton Allotment Association is close to reaching private deal for a site in the town.

After years of behind-the-scenes work, Honiton Town Council’s on-off bid to provide allotments has possibly been overtaken by a private deal.

Honiton Allotment Association has found its own land - and it could mean two sites for keen gardeners, with hopes for the Honiton Bottom Road site still riding high.

An agreement has been made with a private landowner, who has offered a site big enough for approximately 60 plots, and was discussed during a meeting of the association this month.

However, it will be subject to the approval of a planning application for a change of use of the site.

A spokeswoman from Honiton Allotment Association said: “We are very hopeful the planning application will all go through.

“If we can get the agreement, it will be a positive step for the association as we have all been waiting a long time, but I don’t think anybody is counting their chickens yet.

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“It sounds promising, but we haven’t given up on the Honiton Bottom Road site as the town and district councils are actively pursuing that.”

The agreement would be a private one between the allotment association and the landowner, who does not wish to be named at this time, and has no involvement with Honiton Town Council.

The location of the site has not yet been disclosed and would be available for use by association members only.

The spokeswoman added: “Honiton Town Council and East Devon District council are still actively working for a site in Honiton. This is not regarded as covering there statutory duty and is entirely separate from what the council is doing.

“The town council has been very supportive and we are still working with them to get a site in Honiton, as this site may not suit everybody.

“We still need allotments in Honiton.”

A meeting was held between representatives from the town, district and county councils and Paul Kiddle from the allotment association to discuss the provision of statutory allotments on Honiton Bottom Road.

A further clarification of the law has been requested as a result of a High Court ruling on a previous case.

She said: “We are hopeful we can get the planning application approved and can start preparing the ground in the Autumn.”

Anyone wishing to join Honiton Allotment Association can call chairman Paul Kiddle on (01404) 44694.