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The allotment movement in North-East Greater London 1900-2010: a case study of the supply, demand and culture of urban allotments

Acton, L.; (2012) The allotment movement in North-East Greater London 1900-2010: a case study of the supply, demand and culture of urban allotments. Doctoral thesis, UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

Allotments are small parcels of rented land, in rural and urban locations, used for growing fruits and vegetables for personal consumption. The origins of the urban allotment movement are obscure, but a nineteenth-century publicly sponsored campaign for rural allotments spread to urban areas by the beginning of the twentieth century. The demand for allotments and their availability have changed over time. In this thesis, I examine the causes of these changes by focusing on a specific case: the urban allotment movement in Ilford/Redbridge, Greater London, from its inception in 1900 until 2010. My case study analyses the acquisition and disposal of allotment sites within the context of the times. I consider individual actors and the consequences of their actions on the allotment movement. I also examine communities and culture, the politics and policies of the local council, the government, and the allotment societies. My results thereby show the ways in which the socio-economic and political conditions can affect the value of allotments at more than one level. The demographics of the plot holder in Ilford/Redbridge is profiled over the course of the twentieth century and compared to the stereotype of the allotmenteer as a white working-class male. Ultimately, this thesis concludes that in Ilford/Redbridge, at least, the primary purpose in having an allotment was for its recreational rather than its functional (economic) value.

Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Title:The allotment movement in North-East Greater London 1900-2010: a case study of the supply, demand and culture of urban allotments
Open access status:An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language:English
Additional information:Copyright restricted material and some personal details have been removed from the e-thesis.
UCL classification:UCL > School of Arts and Social Sciences > Faculty of Social and Historical Sciences > Institute of Archaeology

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