With up to 40 allotments expected to be available to Kells residents this year, the Kells Community Allotments Group will hold a public meeting next Wednesday (17th February) at 9pm in the Edmund Rice Centre.
The meeting will give people interested in starting an allotment at Loyd the opportunity to be updated on the progress that has been made in starting an allotments scheme.
The Kells Community Allotments Group will carry out the development work itself in order to get plots up and running by late February or early March of this year.
Andy Bogie, chairperson of the Allotments Group, explained that Kells Town Council had been going to run the scheme and 32 applications had been received by the council.
"Due to prohibitive start-up costs and the difficulties in the public finances, it was not affordable for the council to run with a scheme in 2010. However the council have agreed to allocate two acres of agricultural land at Loyd to the Allotments Group, as well as agreeing to provide us with a perimeter fence, for which we are most appreciative. The land is being let to the group for a nominal fee," he said.
He said the allotments committee has agreed to set itself up as a limited company with the advice and assistance of Michael O'Byrne, solicitor, and is also putting in place the required insurances, as required by Kells Town Council.
In the interim, the group is operating to a constitution it has drafted drafted with the invaluable assistance of the Kells People's Resource Centre. Once plots are allocated, the group will hold its first AGM to get the constitution formally adopted by the membership.
Mr Bogie said, that subject to any other unforeseen costs, they hope to be able to provide small lots of approximately 100 square metres for €60 and larger plots of 160 sq metres for €90 for an 11-month period.
"We are still mapping the site but we hope to have at least 40 plots available in year one. If the scheme is a success, the council will consider allocating us a further two acres in 2011 to meet any increased demand," he added.
"We are giving priority to the 32 who have already applied for an allotment under the scheme that was going to be run by Kells Town Council," he said.