Members’ meetings

Members Representatives Meeting – 28th September 2020

As gatherings remain subject to Covid-19 restrictions we held for the second time our representatives meeting using the Zoom videoconferencing platform.

For this meeting in preference to a specific topic we offered site representatives the opportunity to have a general catch-up between societies with any news or questions to share.

The meeting was lively and informative with contributions from 20 participants and over 70 online (Zoom) chats during the session.

Topics were wide ranging with participants contributing comments and information, expressing concerns and sharing actual and practical site experiences.

The subjects raised and discussed were:

  • Site Regulations as they apply to visitor numbers, non cultivation of plots and conditions of tenancies.
  • Committees and committee members’ roles. Eligibility of potential committee members’, rewards/payments in return for services provided. Threatening behaviour on and off site towards committee members’.
  • Volunteers now fewer to help with site maintenance tasks. Incentives for working party participants.
  • Annual General Meetings should remain suspended as last communicated by us on 18th September and in accordance with the law, Corporate Insolvency and Governance Act 2020 and guidance issued by The Chartered Governance Institute and the Financial Reporting Council.
  • Legal Advice from qualified professionals with experience of handling appropriate allotment matters made available to societies to standardise processes,
  • Barnet Council and the ongoing problems with communications and lack of assistance.
  • Security. Alternative products to conventional gate padlocks/keys such as smart padlocks. GDPR compliance with use of cameras on allotment sites and individual plots.
  • Land Use. Possibilities of converting ground unsuitable for plots for communal cultivation purposes such as vineyards, orchards and polytunnels.

Should you have any questions relating to the topics or wish to offer or seek any advice or information please email:

The date of the next meeting will be issued later.

BAF Members Meeting – 30 July 2020

Presentation – The Climate Change Garden

This meeting was made possible using, for the first time, the Zoom videoconferencing platform.

Our guest presenter, Kim Stoddart, expertly covered the increasingly important and challenging subject of climate change which is close to the hearts of all allotmenteers. In 2020 we’ve experienced many extremes of weather, from the wettest February on record, to the warmest spring; then autumn-like weather most recently and the hottest day of the year.

Kim’s presentation confirms the view that it is no longer gardening as usual.  There are many aspects to the potential problems ahead and the importance of how we need to adjust to climate change gardening.

Key issues and solutions presented were:

  • Improving soil , soil health, no dig gardening*, mulching, composting
  • Implementing water saving measures, water retention
  • Designing the plot to cope with extreme weather events, plants stress and damage, low maintenance, raised beds, pests & disease
  • Creating a resilient vegetable plot, growing in blocks, crop rotation, slow it-spread it-sink it
  • Planting a climate change orchard
  • Reshaping a flower garden to be climate change proof, mixed & companion planting, wildflowers
  • Peasant gardening techniques and dealing with weeds
  • Nature holds the answers, biodiversity, attracting wildlife, natures pest control
  • Perennial growing, seed saving

The solutions show how we can strive to shore up our defences for climate change savvy gardening by adopting resilient and new gardening techniques.

*For more information about no dig gardening check out Charles Dowding’s website  He is a leading authority on this technique.

If you want to know more and create a climate change resilient allotment plot this excellent book The Climate Change Garden by Sally Morgan & Kim Stoddart, is available from their website, or by email to

The Federation holds several general meetings a year which are attended by representatives from its member societies. These usually consist of a short business part followed by a workshop or group discussion on a topic of mutual interest relating to self-management, which is intended to enable societies to compare notes and disseminate best practice.

In addition there is a social event, the Plot and Site Competition Prizegiving in October. Those attending are asked to bring food and drink to share, and donations for a plant/seed sale.

The meetings usually take place at 8pm in the Pavilion, Rathbone Allotments, Ryalls Court, Oakleigh Road North, London N20 0RY.

Meeting notices are circulated by email to society representatives, chairs and secretaries about two weeks before the meeting.

If a representative or secretary does not have access to email, please send an email to to ask for them to be sent by post.

Copies of some of the meetings papers may be downloaded from here.

Details of forthcoming meetings may be found on the Notice Board page.