Inspection Day

Typically, I overslept this morning resulting in a mad dash to get ready and to the allotment to feed the chickens before the inspection began. Cramming on my hat, I ran out the door, arriving on site with just enough time to clean out the nest boxes in the greenhouse and main coop. As I was walking back up to the greenhouse, I found Derek waiting for me. He had organised the meeting and we waited for the Town Council Representative to arrive, avidly watching the two front gates for any sign of the arrival.

A few minutes later, Derek’s phone rang and it was the Town Council Rep who had found his way to the car park entrance on the opposite side of the site. We sprinted across to let him in. As we ran, I asked Derek whether he had told the Council Rep to wear wellies. He replied in the negative. Great, I thought to myself, invisioning a smartly dressed man in a suit with polished leather shoes increasingly irate as he struggled through the mud. That’ll be a way to instantly make the Council hate us! Fortunately however, he was wearing sensible boots. It turns out he is a keen gardener and probably wouldn’t have needed a reminder to wear sensible footwear.

All in all, it was a good visit – no one from the Council has been visiting sites for many years and it was great to show how much work we had done on site. He took a few notes and asked lots of questions about how we ran the site and what policies we had in place for this or that. He also wanted to see all the chicken coops and as we showed him around the site, I appreciated once again, how special this place is.

We rounded up the tour back at the car park where we chatted a bit more about our ideas for a new clubhouse. He gave us some information about funding and rules for temporary structures (no permanent ones allowed!) before sending him away with a smile. All in all, Derek thought it was a positive visit and all we now need to do is to wait for the written report to come through.

With all that excitement over, I went to see Geoff and Cliff who were busy working on the greenhouse on Plot 8. Apparently, Geoff had accidentally bumped the side of the greenhouse as he passed by on his mobility scooter. The path there is incredibly narrow and there was wild talk of shifting the greenhouse a foot or so backwards so that the path could be the proper width. Under the direction of Cliff, I helped put two bits of glass back in to replace the broken ones. We came rather unstuck when we ran out of clips and the triangular piece at the top tried to throw itself onto the ground. But as ever, Cliff won the day!

By now I was absolutely frozen. Wellies are a wonderful invention but they aren’t conducive to having warm feet! I pottered home after shutting up the shed and mollifying the Little Weed Destroyers with a fresh bowl of food.


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