Plans to create new allotments in a built-up area of Hereford have been withdrawn after they proved unpopular with residents and officials.

The charity Hereford Allotments and Leisure Gardeners (HALGS) applied in April for planning permission to adapt a disused play area between Ross Road and Belmont Road in the inner south of the city, owned by a housing association.

But local worker Tessa Adkin said the current green space “is essential to our mental well being as well as [to] the flora and fauna it supports”.


Also opposing the bid, Melanie Daniel said she would be “devastated if this was to be fenced off”, and questioned the suitability of the unmetalled access path for vehicles.

And Nath Prosser of the Ross Road Health Centre lying next to the path feared allotmenteers would compete with staff and patients for the limited parking at the centre.

Hereford Times: The only entrance to the site is down a grassy path beside Ross Road Health CentreThe only entrance to the site is down a grassy path beside Ross Road Health Centre (Image: Google Street View)

Herefordshire Council’s open space planning officer Ruth Jackson pointed out: “There is no detail provided as to how the allotments will be allocated, [or if] the site will be available for wider community access, so it is assumed not.”

Ms Jackson had surveyed the site last year as part of a formal assessment of the county’s open spaces, describing it as “a pocket park for the local community” which, though poorly maintained, could become “an excellent community garden” serving a range of needs.

Hereford City Council also objected to the plan but backed this alternative use, “which delivers aspects of [food] production alongside play and green space”.

HALGS chairperson Pauline Shannon said: “We have noted people’s representations.

“We have to spend money wisely, and can’t put in the suggestions that have been made. We are volunteers, we don’t have experience of running community gardens.”

But she stressed the demand for allotments remains. “We have 50 people on our waiting list in the south Wye area alone,” she said.

“They want fully-fledged allotments so they can provide for their families.”

HALGS already manages nine Herefordshire Council-owned allotment sites in the city, but this was to be its first on private land.