Jerome planning submissions

Jerome allotment site will be affected by the "hybrid planning application for the continued regeneration of the South Acton Estate".

Following changes by Mayor of London to the allowed "density" levels, the original plan has been revised by the developer. The effect of the latest planning request on Jerome allotments is significant. Of note is breaking up the allotment site into small disconnected areas, and the major loss of daylight as result of shade from adjacent buildings.

Ealing planning and building control have published the documentation. Unfortunately the documents are black and white, making maps and the light study difficult to read. Further, the light study covers the main growing season, April to September, and does not provide data for autumn and winter months even though crops would be cultivated during this period.

During September 2018, EAP submitted objections to the proposals, arguing for retention of the orginal 2012 plan. The letter is reproduced here.

To register your support please sign up to the Jerome petition.

Below is a sketch of the site with an explaination of the proposed plan. More information may be found at the Jerome allotment website.

jerome outline plan 2018

The above diagram shows the proposed changes to the area around Jerome allotment located at the south western end of the South Acton housing estate. The red dashed area shows the layout of the present site. The convoluted shape reflects the fact that a large part of the site nestles close to two large housing blocks Buchan House and JeromeTower.

The plan is to replace Buchan and Jerome by the two tower blocks on the right of the four new blocks in the diagram. The original plan, agreed in 2012, was that allotment land lost by their construction should be replaced by the land enclosed in the heavy black line on the upper left of the diagram. The inevitable heavy overshadowing of the existing site by the four tower blocks to its south and west was recognised but the replacement land offered to the west had the advantage of being less affected,

A revised plan produced in 2017, due to be decided on by the Council Planning Committee October 2018, changes the situation radically. It involves the extension of a short row of pre-planned town houses opposite the second of the four tower blocks, to the left, into this planned allotment replacement area and to the right onto the existing Jerome site; the L-shaped area outlined in yellow. The proposed final layout of Jerome shown in green consists of the residual area of the site plus the four patches of land marked 1-4. The final result is an area that now lies almost entirely overshadowed by the proposed housing development.

Jerome allotments planning EAP submission

EAP submitted the following statement to Ealing Planning Committe in September 2018.

I write as the designated representative of the Executive Committee of Ealing Allotments Partnership (EAP). EAP is a community-led group, working with Ealing Council, on behalf of all the approximately 1500 allotment tenants in the borough. For further details visit https://www.ealingallotmentspartnership.co.uk

The Jerome Allotment site, located at the southern end of the South Acton housing estate hosts the flourishing community engagement project “South Acton Community Allotment” and is very much a community garden with many small plots and raised beds lovingly tended by tenants mainly living in the nearby estate. Its rich biodiversity is recognised in its SINC (Site of Importance for Nature Conservation).

The importance of preserving the site and, as far as possible, mitigating its inevitable encroachment and overshadowing by the planned replacement of the currently existing Jerome Tower and Buchan House by the line of four tower blocks to the south of the site, was fully recognised in the 2012 Estate Master Plan. The key element of which was the provision of an area of substitute land largely free from overshadowing facing on to Enfield Road at the western end of the planned development.

EAP’s main objections to the current proposals are:

  1. the planned construction of townhouses on the bulk of the substitute land facing Enfield Road both in terms of the area lost to cultivation and the inevitable overshadowing occasioned by their location rendering it largely unsuitable for cultivation purposes
  2. the planned construction of two townhouses on the western extremity of the existing allotment site which would both lead to a further loss of space and loss of access to sunlight to the southwest and west exacerbating the overshadowing problem caused by the tower blocks to the south of the site.
  3. the complete unsuitability of the land offered in replacement of (a) and (b) – areas that are heavily overshadowed and/or are so narrow as to generate wind tunnel effects rendering them unsuitable for cultivation purposes.
  4. the likely consequence, if these proposals were to go ahead in their present form, is that Jerome allotments would exist in name only and that the local community would lose a valued asset in terms of communal welfare and local wildlife conservation.

EAP strongly supports calls for:

  1. rejection of the current proposals for substitute allotment land and retention of the generally accepted 2012 Master Plan
  2. the creation of a buffer of 10m of open space between the boundary of all remaining allotment plots and all new apartment blocks.
  3. a detailed survey of the degree of overshadowing mapping the number of potential sunlight hours for both the existing allotment site and any proposed modifications to the site
  4. A plan to allow, as far as possible, continued cultivation of the allotment area during the inevitable disruption period associated with construction of the estate buildings
  5. A commitment to the provision of 300mm depth site-wide layer of screened topsoil and PAS100 certified organic compost to aid restoration of the fertility of the allotmentsite post-redevelopment.

Composting Toilets

Information about EAP initiative for installation of composting toilets at allotment sites in Ealing Borough.

RHS Grass Roots magazine includes an article about the composting toilet initiative which has generated many equiries from allotment managers from all over the country. The article is in Grass Roots Summer 2018 edition, (PDF link)

AGM Report

The 2015 AGM, held on 18th February was extremely successful with between 60 - 70 tenants present. Click on AGM 2015 to access the Minutes of the Meeting, the Chair's Annual Report, the Accounts and the annual report from Ealing's Allotments Manager, Stephen Cole.

The AGM was followed by an authoritative presentation by Richard Wlitshire of King's College London on "Allotments - the Broader Picture". A summary of his presentation will appear in the Spring 2016 edition of the EAP newsletter.

An excellent evening was rounded off by a question and answer session on Site Development, Sources of Funding and related topics featuring a panel consisting of Richard Wiltshire, Christina Fox (Northfields), Hilary Jayne (Framfield) and chaired by John Bradley (Blondin).

Posted 10th March, 2015.

AGM 2014

The 2014 AGM went off very well with about sixty members in attendance.

To access copies of the draft minutes, the accompanying reports from Helen de Jimenez (the out-going Chair of EAP), Stephen Cole (the Council Allotments Manager) and the Treasurer’s Accounts click on AGM.

A new Executive Committee was elected consisting of: Patrick Williams (Brentham) Chair; Helen de Jimenez (Haslemere) Secretary; Dominique van Dooren (Ascott) Treasurer; John Bradley (Blondin), Tony Donegan (Brentham), Andy Doyle (Braund Avenue), Christina Fox (Northfields) and Joseph Mangar (Horsenden).

Patrick Williams introduced and led a discussion of the future plans of EAP in which it was agreed that the in-coming Committee would update the objectives of EAP so as to better reflect the strengths of EAP and the interests of its membership. Suggestions for new initiatives and ways of better involving those members who are not on-line were also discussed.

The formal business over there were two excellent presentations. The first by John Bradley described the self management system in place at Blondin Allotments and the second by Igor Vaintraube was entitled "Soil Structure and Fertility -How to Improve it". For summaries of these presentation click on newsletter to access accounts in the Spring 2014 EAP Newsletter.

Posted March 28th, 2014