The following advice incorporates new guidelines set out by the National Allotment Society on 31st March 2020
The government is presently advising the population to stay at home and practice social distancing, whilst being allowed to take one form of exercise a day. If working your allotment is to carry on being seen as legitimate exercise then it is imperative that plot-holders follow all the guidelines, allotment sites are as risky as anywhere else
It is vitally important that you follow all the advice about social distancing and hygiene in the points below and not gather together on site.
Any plot-holder who is self isolating because a household member is ill with corona-virus should not be visiting the site.
It is essential that no un-authorised people are allowed onto the plots for the duration of this emergency,
- Keep hand sanitiser in your shed and wash your hands regularly
- Use hand sanitiser before opening and after closing any gate locks
- Wash hands when you get home
- DO NOT gather together in groups for a chat even if you are 2 metres apart.
- Observe “Social Distancing” with each other 2-3 metres
- If you take your children to the plot, ensure that they stay within its confines and do not run around on communal paths and spaces.
- Do not share tools
- Minimise the contact with each other for example no handshakes
- Do not wash your hands in water troughs
- We recommend that all communal facilities are closed
- If you display any symptoms of coronavirus stay at home and self-isolate for at least 14 days or until symptoms have passed.
Continue reading “COVID-19”
In order to help new tenants, and to provide an easy reminder for existing tenants, YACIO has produced a new Tenant Handbook to help answer your allotment queries!
Tenant Handbook 2020 V1.2
Hosepipes must only be used for filling water butts and containers. You must not use them to directly water your plot. Sprinklers are strictly prohibited.
This is for several reasons:
- Using a hosepipe for extended periods means that other plot holders cannot get water.
- Watering with a hosepipe is inefficient and leads to excessive water consumption, much of which is lost to evaporation.
- Excessive water usage may lead to a water shortage and a hosepipe ban in times of drought.
The National Allotment Society website has more information on Gardening In A Drought which offers some helpful advice.
Plot inspections have recently taken place across most sites. Some tenants will have received a letter from us telling them that they need to improve the condition of their plot. But what does this mean? We ask that at least 25% of a plot is cultivated as set out below.
The tenant must demonstrate that they are maintaining their plot in a cultivatable state. This means that they are:
- making every effort to control weed growth
- preparing the soil for sowing or planting
- planting out new crops during the growing season or maintaining perennials such as fruit bearing shrubs or trees
The use of weed suppressant covering by tenants is permitted in the following circumstances:
- to prepare an overgrown plot for cultivation (weed suppressant coverings should not normally be in place for more than 12 months)
- on a temporary basis for small areas of the plot (not exceeding 50% of the total area) not currently being used for growing
- in the event of a prolonged absence, either due to illness or circumstances beyond the plot holders control, larger proportions of covering are permitted providing the tenant makes arrangements for YACIO to be notified.
As you may be aware the law on Data Protection is changing. Since we hold data about all of our tenants we need to be clear with you what data we hold, and for what purpose, and why we think this is legitimate.
We hold data that you supplied to us or to the City of York Council when you applied for a tenancy. This is basic contact information and may include other details such as your age or if you are on benefits. We use this information for the effective administration of the charity and to give us information which forms the basis of the contract (tenancy).
In addition to this we keep records of contacts we have with you; for example if you make an enquiry and we reply we keep a note of that enquiry and what we said in response. This helps us run the charity effectively.
All of this information is held securely on a data base which is ‘GDPR compliant’. This simply means that it is structured in a way that fulfills the requirements of the new laws on data protection. In future we will allow site secretaries to access records only for those tenants who have plots on their sites. If the site secretary cannot access the database we might provide them with basic contact information for tenants on their sites as a printed list. They will keep this information securely.
If you give up your tenancy we will keep some information to help, for example should you reapply for an allotment.
Under no circumstances will we sell on your data to any other organisation.
We are taking advice as to whether there are circumstances under which the Emergency Services or City of York Council (as the Landlord) might oblige us to pass on your contact data.
If you have any concerns about our holding of your data or the use we put it to then do feel free to contact us.