Plot G35a, that is. Our scruffy but well-loved little half-plot behind the football ground in Altrincham. We’re losing it not because we’ve been kicked off for non-cultivation (nope, never even had ‘a letter’ despite our slovenly weeding habits). We’re moving – or relocating more like. Part of a growing stream of people pulled southwards as the gulf between London and the rest of the UK grows ever wider. We didn’t want to agree to it, but we’ve had to. And aside from everything (and everybody) else we’re having to say goodbye to, there’s the allotment.
We took the plot on in 2009, when our youngest was a couple of months old. We’d been on the waiting list for over a year, and had pretty much parked the idea in the haze of pregnancy/ new baby, but having waited so long felt we had to accept when our names came to the top of the list. Initially we shared with another family, also with young children. Our shed – our beautiful shed! – started life as a beach hut on Hollyoaks and dominated our little landscape in all its aged yellow and duck-egg blue painted glory. We put in six beds, using old scaffold boards as edges, and set to with the planting.
Eventually our baby boy outgrew his baby carrier and we moved him into an old travel cot for our allotment trips – so he’d sit in there eating raisins and shouting while we did our best to crack on with the digging. As time passed he joined his sister as a junior gardener – his method of runner bean planting will be one we won’t forget.
We’ll be sad to leave it all of course. Our lovely fruit – the rhubarb, the gooseberries, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries – and our two baby apple trees. Also the prolific nasturtiums, the marigolds, the stuff that springs up with no effort whatsoever. The mare’s tail and couch grass we won’t miss – but no doubt there’ll be some of that where we’re going to remind us of home.
Most of all we will miss the fantastic people we met and came to know – people with neighbouring plots, all of whom shared their knowledge – and their produce – so generously.
Towards our last couple of weeks a twist of fate brightened the allotment goodbye – plot G35A was to be taken on by some very good friends, a family who’d been waiting for upwards of a year for a plot to come free. Our timing was perfect as their names reached the top of the list. So now we can enjoy regular updates by Facebook as to what is being harvested from G35A – truly allotment gardening by proxy!
Posted by Vicky