Rory and Vice-President of the Penrith and District Gardeners’ and Allotment Holders’ Association, spent Saturday morning with local gardeners and members of the Association at the Salkeld Road allotment in Penrith, where he met with members, chatted about the workings of the Association, and admired the incredible displays of horticultural expertise, all at an allotment with arguably one of the best views in England.

Rory met with Chairman Nick Bellas, Honorary Secretary Jean Hind, and a number of other members. The group explained that the membership organisation – begun fifteen years ago when they took over the administration of the allotments from Eden District Council – boasts between two and three hundred members in and around Penrith, all of whom pay around £25 per year to rent a plot. The Association organises an Annual Show and other outings and events, such as a Buffet Supper and Dance.

Rory said: “I’m thrilled to meet with the committee and some members of this Association, which does such a fantastic job in promoting the importance of  gardening and making horticulture for Penrith’s residents affordable and accessible. It’s marvellous to see so many proud gardeners in their plots on a Saturday, and it is one of the very best-kept allotments that I have ever seen. It also boasts some incredible views of the North Lakes and Caldbeck Fells. It is a real privilege to be Vice-President of the Association, and I look forward to continuing to support them in any way I can.”

Chairman Nick Bellas said: “We were very pleased that Rory took an interest in what we are doing, but just sorry that he is too busy to open the show.  We thank all the allotment holders for keeping the sites clean and tidy, also all members who do a lot of work which is never noticed.  Some people do take on a plot and do not realise how hard work it is if you do not keep on top of weeds. It would be good to see more taking part in our Annual Show, which is to be held on Saturday, 7 September in the Evergreen Hall.”

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