Allotment gardening is popular in the town with all of the three sites full. The council is researching and writing an allotments strategy to ensure they are supported and invested in, and to look at ways in which provision of plots can be increased.
The Eddington Lane site is an example of good practice with a very active and out going site association that has won prestigious national awards such as the Best in Britain, an award sponsored by the Kitchen Gardens Magazine and the National Allotments Gardens Trust. It has also won Digging for Victory competition run by the UK TV Gardens channel.
A wide variety of plants can be found on this site from fruit and vegetables, to heritage plants and spectacular roses. Every May the association hold a plant sale, and this year it was held on 22 May.
Members supply any surplus plants and the proceeds go towards the cost of an annual show. This is held on the last Saturday in August and has categories for vegetables, fruit, flowers, flower arranging, cookery and special children’s entries. The show is open to all and members of the public are able to enter any category, with judging taking place and prizes awarded on the day. In June plots are judged in the local competition and the best six go forward to the county competition.
The association has won the Medway Trophy (for the highest aggregate score) every year since 1992 and one or other of the sites has won the Best Site category.