When my husband and I moved to London after we first got married, we had a tiny corner of our landlord’s garden, like literally a pavement. We put little pots out there to grow vegetables – we had lettuce, radishes and chilli plants from those free seeds you get at Wahaca. We thought it was practice looking after something before we had children. The chilli plant was my baby! Anyway, we always saw allotments wherever I drove around and my husband would always say “I want an allotment one day”
Well, we had our children and I forgot all about it. Then yesterday, a friend said to me “Come to my garden!” after playgroup. I was so surprised to find out she had an allotment! I had heard her talk about growing veggies before but assumed it was on a balcony or something. Nope! An actual little garden plot on an allotment. After a little walk through, wait for it… CHALVEY!! She brought me to this most beautiful, peaceful paradise. Just look at these photos – can you believe this is Slough?!
Admittedly it was a beautiful sunny day and the sun makes things look extra pretty, but honestly, it was like walking into another world – so much greenery and nature, fruit trees, vegetables, wildflowers, herbs, the scent of coriander, pops of colour, little footpaths into the little plots. You could hear birds!
The only giveaway that this was Chalvey were the council blocks in the distance. Now I know I always say to avoid Chalvey when people ask me about moving to Slough – and I stand by that. At night it is not a safe area and I wouldn’t come here in the dark, ever! It is a shame, as actually the houses we walked past to get here were pretty Victorian terraces.
The Slough to Windsor train goes right past this allotment site on Ragstone Road. I found it quite nice, it sort of added to the rural feel, a train whizzing through the countryside. Well, I’m pretending it’s the countryside, hehe.
Having an allotment is a big commitment thought, you have to look after your plot. Especially with the hot weather we are having, you have to come and water your plants every day, de-weed. Cut the grass if you’ve got a grassy section.
Lily really enjoyed our little outing to my friend’s allotment. It’s a locked area, so only key-holders have access. We relaxed in the sunshine, I snapped away taking photos, we watched the train go back and forth and blew dandelions. Well, Lily tried to eat them.
The plot in the above photo won Silver in the annual Slough Allotment Competition last year. Yes, there are competitions!!
If you are interested in having an allotment, you have to apply through the council here. There’s usually a waiting list as allotments are very popular, and if you get one, there’s a fee depending different factors.
Slough has 916 plots on 12 sites across the borough – Sampsons Green, Cowper Road, Cherry Orchard (Stoke Road), Keel Drive, Ragstone Road, Westpoint, College Road, Green Drive off Trelawney Avenue, Horsemoor Green off Common Road, Spencer Road, Granville Avenue off Sumburgh Way, The Myrke (Slough Road).
Do you grow herbs and vegetables at home or on an allotment? If you do, what do you grow?