Thanks go to Alison and Stuart for prompting this post.
Today Holyrood passed into law the Community Empowerment Act, Section 7 of which gives new rights to community growing groups and will bring new security and opportunities to allotment sites and associations.
The bill was first brought before The Scottish Parliament in June of last year and a spirited campaign by the Scottish Allotments and Gardens Society has seen its terms significantly strengthened. The legislation now requires local authorities to:
- consult with ministers before closing a site
- provide a replacement site if demand exists
- manage waiting lists within a five year maximum period
- set fair rents.
GFAA has always enjoyed a positive and cooperative relationship with Aberdeen City Council and hopes and expects to do so in the future, but it’s good to have the new Community Empowerment Act as a backstop to further developments and a spur to new projects.
If you have ideas about how we might create and exploit new opportunities under the Act please bring them to the attention of a member of the GFAA Committee or post them in a comment below.