Select Committee on Environment, Transport and Regional Affairs Fifth Report


ROLE OF CENTRAL GOVERNMENT

110. We were disappointed to be told by the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State that allotments are essentially a local issue.[180] We believe that the provision of allotments is a national issue. While the particular rate of provision should be decided locally, it is important for Government to recognise its own role in promoting allotments.

111. We agree with the Minister that it is the Government's role to "encourage, evangelise, but not compel"[181] people to take up allotment gardening. However, we received very little evidence of the Government encouraging or evangelising.

112. Central Government must provide the overall policy guidance and a framework within which local policy operates. We recommend that the Government makes clear the role it sees for allotments in the future and sets about offering improved guidance and greater encouragement to local government.

113. We recommend that the Government should collate the information on allotment provision held at local authority level and use this to develop and maintain a database on allotment provision. In this way, the overall national trend in provision can be determined and the effectiveness of measures to encourage continued allotment provision can be assessed.


180   Q223 and Q246 Back

181   Q260 Back


 
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