James is Chair of the Allotment and has dedicated his personal time to making it a fully accessible and enjoyable space for everyone.
As chair, James has taken full responsibility for the allotment and has encouraged the group to become self-sufficient in the last year. Realising that the condition of the allotment needed much improving, James independently applied for funding that would help the group not only keep the allotment a safe and tidy space for people to grow fruit and vegetables, but also provide money that would enable better equipment for group members; as an example the group successfully won £4,000 through the Tesco Community Grant.
The additional funding that James has secured the allotment to not only be better managed, but grow in size, which has attracted more people to the group from all walks of life.
It is of credit to him that his dedication has resulted in a growing interest from new tenants to join the group, when it was otherwise only pre-existing tenants involved.
James has helped to create an allotment that welcomes a diverse group of people and has worked hard to make the allotment an inclusive community where ideas are shared, and a person’s past experience is not relevant. Because of this, the allotment is used by individuals for a wide variety of reasons. Veterans, for example, are using the allotment as a way to relieve anxieties relating to PTSD, others use their plot as a way to teach their children about the origin of their food and whilst others dedicate their time to reap the physical benefits.
The allotment is now a community, where friendships have formed that would not have otherwise. James describes the group as ‘one big green fingered family’. Yet, this family is always welcoming and inclusive of any new growers, as to the group ‘ a person with an interest in gardening, is a person that should be growing and sharing that passion with others’.
Congratulations James from everyone at Taff (and Willy Nilly, the Allotment Mascot)