Brandon allotments recovered after severe flooding
- Credit: FCC Environment
Brandon allotments which have flooded twice since December have been saved after a delivery of compost by the county's green waste.
A Suffolk County Council contractor FCC, which manage Suffolk's recycling centres, delivered the compost to the site as part of the community outreach.
The Brandon Allotments are on land gifted to the people of Brandon along with a newly renovated sports centre, football fields, a bowls Green and fish ponds.
The allotment site is adjacent to the Little Ouse River. In December, the exceptionally high rainfall together with the need to manage the river levels on the Little Ouse caused flooding in both Thetford and Brandon.
Allen Coulson, the Secretary of Brandon Allotments Association, said: “The allotments were inundated with water over the Christmas period, flooding of the River Ouse was over a foot of water.
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"That is just one of the 'benefits' of a riverside location.
"Normally our water level is fairly close to the surface of the plots - but now with the works on the Staunch and the current river management, about half of each plot is saturated and is no use for growing.
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"We appealed for an amount of compost/soil improver to both improve the nutrient value of the soil and bulk out/dry out some of the saturated areas.”
The water completely flooded the allotment site to a depth of up to 30cm and with the river being high, did not drain for over a week.
The water table is inches below the surface of the plots and most plots have various levels meaning that half of each plot has been unviable. In addition the nutrient content of the wet soil has degraded.
The allotment Association appealed to FCC Environment for help and 10 tonnes of compost have been delivered and used to allow planting to continue.
Unfortunately extra rainfall in April once again flooded part of the allotments and FCC again helped with an extra 10 tonnes.
The Allotment Association have been delighted at this assistance, which has made a real difference and allowed planting to start in conditioned soil.
There is also no doubt that some people would have given up, were it not for this response to the flooding emergencies, says Allen.