Shortage of allotments as waiting list grows

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SHEFFIELD has a huge shortage of allotments with a waiting list almost as long as the total number of plots.

There are 3,000 occupied plots at 72 allotment sites around Sheffield, and 2,300 people have put their names down for when one becomes free.

Last year, the council proposed a new strategy to increase the number of available plots, with six new allotment sites proposed.

They were set to be created at Totley, Ecclesfield Park, Lane End in Chapeltown, the old Jessop Hospital site, Page Hall and parkland at Parson Cross, on land which is derelict or overgrown.

But only the Totley scheme has progressed so far. Some 70 new plots were proposed on council-owned land off Mickley Lane last year but the project attracted a flurry of objections from neighbours.

A 245-signature petition was submitted against the project and, after listening to protesters, the scheme was scaled down to 58 plots, and granted permission earlier this year - but the new site has not yet been completed.

The council is hoping to work with community groups to create the five other allotment sites, including Grow Sheffield, Green City Action, Heeley City Farm and Sheffield Wildlife Trust. The organisations are all in favour of increasing the amount of locally-grown food.