More allotment news

Just to show that I'm not partisan, good news from the other end of the country.

The Wintles is one of Britain's newest housing schemes - in Shropshire. It has put allotments and a village green at the core of its design, to try and encourage neighbourliness and an environmentally-friendly lifestyle.

The green hosts a midsummer's night picnic, a petanque contest in July, and a Christmas morning drinks party around a communal Christmas tree. Because there are no cars around the green, children can play there safely, people take out their babies and the adults chat encouraging cross-generation relationships.

The Wintles are a development of around forty homes, built with local materials and positioned so they face each other around the green. The houses are all fitted with solar panels, have triple-glazing, wood-burning stoves, under-floor heating and LPG gas boilers. But Bob Tomlinson, who runs the Living Villages company behind the development, says the village green might be the best eco-friendly feature of the lot.

"A substantial amount of the green is given over to allotment space so people grow their own food. That means they don't travel for their food but end up with high-quality, low-cost produce. That does more for the environment than many of the high-tech gadgets we're concerned about these days," he says.

It's a similar story at many new developments these days, where eco-minded developers are creating village greens, allotments and even woodlands in the heart of their housing schemes. More than a hundred have been created in England alone in the past decade, says the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

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Posted by The Allotment Blogger on Thursday, September 13, 2007

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