Garthdee Allotments

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Tag: Aberdeen City (Page 2 of 3)

IYN Preparation 2016

Stuart2016 marks GFAA’s third year in the It’s Your Neighbourhood Scheme. We achieved a Thriving assessment at our first go and now we have an Outstanding ranking to defend in 2016 after our success last year.  Outstanding is the highest award possible. Taking part in IYN has been a source of good advice on growing, the environment and building a better community, but just as importantly, it has helped us open doors to getting more external funding for our site and facilities.

This last month Norman and I took part in a workshop to help us prepare for this year’s assessment.  It’s an important year as 2016 marks the 50th Anniversary of Britain in Bloom.  The workshop was hosted jointly by IYN, The Royal Horticultural Society and Aberdeen City Council.

Juliette Camburn hosting and appearing for IYN

Juliette Camburn hosting and appearing for IYN

Stephen Shaw for Aberdeen City Council

Stephen Shaw for Aberdeen City Council

Liz Stewart for RHS

Liz Stewart for RHS

Karen Allan for Aberdeen City Council

Karen Allan for Aberdeen City Council

Some of the key messages for our preparation included:

  • keeping in touch and seeking advice
  • using online resources from IYN and RHS
  • using print and digital comms to get our message across
  • have a vision of where we want to go
  • marking the 50th Anniversary in some way
  • building partnerships with others
  • seeking Council officer and elected member involvement
  • celebrate our successes and good news stories locally and nationally
  • get all ages involved
  • use the council media office to help with the press
  • think about sustainability and long term vitality
  • don’t stand still and get stuck in ruts.

So, we have lots to get on with then!  I and any of the committee members will welcome all suggestions and discussions about our key developments and plans for the future – and of course help to prepare our site for the upcoming IYN Assessment visit.



Seeing things differently…

Plotters and visitors may have noticed some changes around the Community Garden and Orchard of late.


With funding from Aberdeen Greenspace and help from Aberdeen City Council we have been able to define better the planned Primary Plot, add a new field drain and sump to improve drainage in the area and build up the road to level the area between this area and the Polytunnel.  Our collaborations with HMP Grampian have borne fruit with the provision of a pergola and a set of garden benches.  Work is still ongoing and dependent on securing appropriate funding, but we hope to see further exciting developments in this area, including provision of a disabled toilet and a gazebo for use by plotters and visiting groups in the future.

Watch this space!

Spring Bulbs

Aberdeen Council have again this year kindly supplied us with 1000 crocus and 1000 daffodil bulbs. These are now available in the Bothy and this Saturday and /or Sunday 5th/6th December would be a good time to get them planted around our site, provided the ground isn’t frozen or snow covered!
If any plotters wish to plant some of the bulbs on or around the roadway edges of their plot or where they can be seen from the paths please feel free to take some for personal planting.  All that is needed for planting is a spade and bulbs need to be at a depth of around 6inches or 150mm.
Please let me know if you plant any so we can monitor where to plant others in the future.

Aberdeen in Bloom 40th Anniversary Awards

GFAA plotters enjoyed an evening of great successes in the Beach Ballroom yesterday when the individual awards to plotters and gardeners were announced.  Sandy and his wife did exceptionally well with Second Place prizes for both garden and plot.


GFAA dominated the individual plot awards with Sandy in second place, Gill in fourth and Stuart and Alastair (Stewart) placed fifth equal.  Beyond that, a full handful or more of our plotters were presented with certificates of merit.



Perhaps the best moment of the night, however, belonged to Gill who was named as the Best New Entrant in the competition in recognition of her fabulous fourth place in her first year in the competition and only her second year on the plot.


The Lord Provost presented a commemorative engraved hand-trowel and framed certificate to every winner and Aberdeen City Council are to be thanked for hosting the prize-giving and buffet supper in great style.

Thanks go to Stuart too for nagging us all into entering!  Hopefully we will see even more entrants and success next year.

Beautiful Scotland Event

Stuart, Gill and I attended this event earlier in the week on behalf of GFAA.  The event was hosted by Aberdeen City Council as part of its efforts in the Keep Scotland Beautiful competition.  ACC brought together many of the local groups who contribute to the cities efforts, giving us the chance to meet and share with the competition judges.





The event gave us the chance to give an outing to our new GFAA display board, purchased with monies provided by the ACC Small Projects Fund.  The board can be borrowed by any plotters for events advancing GFAA.

Funding Bid Successes

GFAA has had success in two bids to Aberdeen City Council for funds to support new developments around our site.  The monies will go towards improvements in the general amenities for all members in the years ahead.

As we will be participating in the Its Your Neighbourhood Programme in the coming year, ACC has agreed to contribute £400 towards the purchase of Public Liability Insurance, paving slabs, sand, greenhouse staging and hand-tools for use with the Community Garden Poly-tunnel. This will allow us to set the Poly-tunnel up to support wider use by groups and individuals for classes, workshops and communal growing activities, e.g. for pupils visiting from Kaimhill Primary School and within the RGU Community Garden and Student Plot projects.

ACC have also awarded us £400 from their Small Projects Fund to help with the purchase and construction of Larch composting bins to be used in connection with our new Dry Composting Toilet and for the purchase of associated signage and information boards.

We are obviously delighted with this continuing support from Aberdeen City Council as we try to develop our site and its amenities and widen community participation and knowledge of the health and environmental benefits of working a plot.

Thanks go to Stuart for alerting me to this good news story.

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