Anger mounts as allotments still unusable after six years

Mark Knight (inset) is calling for action to be taken to open up Spixworth's allotments to the community

Mark Knight (inset) is calling for action to be taken to open up Spixworth's allotments to the community - Credit: Maya Derrick/Mark Knight

Fed up villagers have slammed the council for not getting the allotments promised to them six years ago open and usable.

A spokeswoman for Spixworth Parish council said that a dispute following the completion of the St Mary's Court development has meant the attached allotments have never been completed.

Since then, the parish council has sent numerous correspondences to Broadland District Council (BDC) to request that the developer return to the allotment site to do the required remediation work.

The allotments on the edge of Spixworth back onto the bungalows in St Mary's Court

The allotments on the edge of Spixworth back onto the bungalows in St Mary's Court - Credit: Maya Derrick

A meeting was due to take place on July 7 with the parish council and BDC to press for a plan and resolution.

The spokeswoman said: "We are appalled with how the matter has dealt with and time it has taken BDC to resolve these issues."

Mark Knight of Spixworth said there has been a lack of progress since the developer left the site.

Mark Knight lives in Spixworth

Mark Knight lives in Spixworth - Credit: Mark Knight

He said: "It's got to the point that you don't think about the loss of the amenity itself - it's been so long that some people don't even know that the allotments are there.

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"The parish council has lost income because of it. If they were rented out it would create money for the community.

"It's a really important thing to have, allotments that can be used. Especially at the moment with the cost of living crisis."

The Spixworth allotments back on to the 23 bungalows that were built at St Mary's Court in 2019

The Spixworth allotments back on to the 23 bungalows that were built at St Mary's Court in 2019 - Credit: Maya Derrick

Mr Knight, 48, who is a town manager and sits on the council - but spoke as a concerned citizen - added that there is no clear way forward to resolve the issue of access to the plots.

"There is no sense of urgency. We don't know how to go on.

"Enough is enough.

"We're frustrated and angry that this hasn't been a priory for BDC.

The allotments on the edge of Spixworth - of which there are 20 - were promised as part of the building of St Mary's Court

The allotments on the edge of Spixworth - of which there are 20 - pictured in March 2022 - Credit: Maya Derrick

"The hard work of creating the allotments has already been done. It's just the access that needs to be sorted," he added.

A spokesman for Broadland District Council said: "Last year BDC received a quote of £7,000 to have work done to the allotments.

"BDC is proposing to offer the parish council the sum of £7,000 so that it can arrange to have the work carried out on the allotments to the parish council’s specification."