‘There’s a clear demand for allotments and a village green’ – Councillor positive over plans for Stevenage’s Great Ashby area

The four acres of land known as Wilkin's Urn in Great Ashby could accommodate a village green, allot

The four acres of land known as Wilkin's Urn in Great Ashby could accommodate a village green, allotments and a nature reserve. - Credit: Archant

Plans to establish a village green, allotments and a nature reserve in Great Ashby have largely received a positive response, but there is still some concern the end result could be an eyesore.

Great Ashby Community Council has got the ball rolling to breathe life into disused land on Mendip Way by establishing a working group to conduct a feasibility study into creating an allotment with 30 half plots, a village green and a small nature reserve.

As part of the study, the working group will look at access to the four-acre site, known as Wilkin’s Urn, as well as parking and an allotment association to deal with the day-to-day running of the site.

Councillor Terry Tyler said: “We clearly have the demand for allotments and this land is very close to the community centre, so we could also have a village green. One area, where there is a dip surrounded by bushes, would remain untouched as a probable nature area.

“John Cherry, who owns the site, has offered the land for a peppercorn rent as long as we maintain it.

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“We had a public meeting, attended by 28 people, and two people objected saying they don’t want it to be an eyesore. Their homes face the plot of land. We wouldn’t want the allotments to look like a shanty town.

“Our next goal is to produce a feasibility project plan of the layout and costings.”

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Concerns regarding the village green include that it could become a focal point for noise and anti-social behaviour.

If you are interested in an allotment plot, or in being a founder member of an allotment association, email the council’s clerk, Pauline Kellett, at clerk@greatashbycouncil.org.uk.

Views, concerns or comments on the plans can also be sent to the same email address.

The working group hopes to have completed its feasibility study in time for the full council meeting in March.

To find out more about the council, which was set up in 2011, visit greatashbycouncil.org.uk.

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