Allotments and Loose Gardeners' Society
Loose Gardeners Society was founded in 1884 for the benefit of members cultivating allotments at the top of Old Loose Hill on land left to the parish by Lady McAlpine.
In the early days only “gentlemen gardeners” were permitted on the site with their ladies being allowed in on Sundays. In the 21st century at least a third of the membership is female.
There are 108 plots, a large proportion of which are half-plots.
Although the land is owned and managed by the Loose Parish Council (McAlpine) Allotments Charity (the McAlpine Trust), the day-to-day running of the site is left to the members of the Gardeners Society, who collect the rents, regularly inspect the plots to see they are being well used and organise the cutting of hedgers and paths and any other maintenance work that is required.
Loose Gardeners’ Society is a separate organisation run for the benefit of not only the plotholders but for local people in Loose and surrounding villages. Membership offers discounts at some local nurseries and garden centres and composts, fertilisers, seeds and other garden sundries are available from the Site Shed on the allotments, at competitive prices.
The Society holds regular functions for its members – a summer evening buffet in June, Christmas and Easter get-togethers and the main event of the year, its Annual Fruit, Flower and Vegetable Show in August. The latter is where members have a chance to show off their prize exhibits and win cups. This event is held on the allotment site and is very well supported by the people of Loose. N.B. Due to Coronavirus and Social Distancing Rules all regular functions have currently ceased. There will not be an Annual Show this year.