Can we use less water?

Advice on mulching

Water is our biggest cost.

The allotment service has a deficit of approximately £35,000. Given the continuing Government cuts to the Council’s finances, the allotment service is under pressure to reduce this. Ideally we should aim for a point where the allotment service is cost neutral. As long as the service is costing more to run than it receives in revenue there will be pressure to increase allotment rents.

A high proportion of current allotment expenditure (circa £30,000) relates to water usage. Reducing unnecessary water usage is therefore beneficial from a budget perspective, as well as having sustainability benefits for the wider environment and community.

We have put together a little document showing how we can aim to reduce our water bill substantially. From obvious ideas to less well known ‘permaculture’ ideas like swales and mulching, this little document might help to inspire us to waste less water and use less water. Download it below.


Comments about this page

  • Necessary to use less water! For many plants you can make a trough first, then water just into the trough so it goes directly to the roots. Water, don’t sprinkle. Planting into a mulch to feed plants and mulching afterwards reall does help conserve water.

    Two questions: 1. What rate does the Council pay to Southern Water? Is it a full domestic rate, or an agricultural rate? It should not be the domestic rate. It should be a lower rate. Does the Council negotiate the rate with Southern Water? It should.

    And we still should plant to conserve water!

    2. The very slow trickle we now get out of the taps – even when few people are using them – on the Weald does not help efficient watering. Why has the water been turned down so very low? Has the water been turned down on other sites?

    By Peter Gorbach (02/10/2018)
  • Hi Peter,
    Thanks for your comment. We will check with the Council regarding the water rates. Regarding the water flow at The Weald, I suggest you contact the Allotment Office directly. The water flow is as normal at the site I am on.

    By Mark Carroll (02/10/2018)
  • Hi Peter
    I have contacted the Council, it seems there is no longer an agricultural rate and all businesses are on an individual business stream payment plan that is bespoken to the number of meters and size of pipes etc.

    The Allotment Office are currently looking to see if the allotments water account can be separated from the main council procurement contract so that it may be possible to negotiate a better water deal.

    By Mark Carroll (04/10/2018)

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