Rules (for Translation)
1 September 2023
Thomson Terrace Allotments C.I.C. (TTACIC) Rules
Note that TTACIC Rules are about individual allotment holders as opposed to the TTACIC Constitution and TTACIC Articles of the Association which are concerned with the association’s governance.
These rules are intended to help plot-holders to use their allotments beneficially and to minimise causes of potential conflict.
These rules are also concerned with maintaining allotments in accordance with the requirements of the landlord, Oxford City Council (OCC) and making every reasonable effort that plots are in a fit state to be re-let should a plot-holder relinquish their plot.
The Management Committee will conduct the affairs of TTACIC delegated by the Directors. The Committee consist of a Chair, Treasurer, Secretary, Field Secretary (collectively ‘the Officers’) and up to five other general members. All members of the Committee must be members of TTACIC.
Members and associate members are welcome to join the committee and support Thomson Terrace Allotments C.I.C.
1 Purpose of an Allotment
1.1 The primary purpose of an allotment is for the growth of fruit and vegetables for use by the household of the plot-holder. As a secondary purpose, it is allowed to grow flowers and keep certain livestock (see Section 10 Livestock and Pets).
1.2 An individual household would be expected to have plots totalling at most 20 poles (500 sq. m). Where, for any reason, members of a household are plot-holders to more than this maximum, they may be required to:
.i demonstrate that they are not using them as part of a commercial enterprise
.ii and relinquish excess plots the following annual subscription day. This will apply if there is any waiting list for plots.
2 Rules, Membership, License to Occupy the Plot, and Subscription Payments
2.1 The rules will be issued and agreed to by the plot holder at the annual subscription collection. Normally, rules are agreed upon during the annual AGM or extraordinary general meetings or, if mandated OCC.
2.2 Plot holders are required to display the plot number on their plot.
2.3 Members have the right to vote at meetings. Membership is not tied to the size of your plot or the number of poles you manage. Where two names of plot holders appear on a license, only the member is allowed to vote (not the associate member). Members are ‘guarantors’ with various rights set out in the company’s articles. Member’s liability is the £1 member subscription.
2.4 Membership subscription in the Association is compulsory.
.i All new and renewal plot holders pay a £1 Member subscription.
.ii Where a plot had two named plot holders, you share a single membership. One is a member, and one is an associate member.
2.5 Plot Subscription covers your License to Occupy the plot from 1st September to 31st August.
.i For 2023-24, the annual plot subscription is £4/per pole, £20 for 5-pole plot and £40 for a 10-pole plot.
.ii For new plot holders, you pay a full year’s plot subscription thru to the 31st of August.
.iii For new plot holders who begin their plot subscription in June, July or August, provided you have begun to cultivate the plot (see Section 5), you pay a full year’s subscription that covers you for 15 months.
.iv All new plot holders pay a refundable plot condition/key deposit, which will be returned when the plot is relinquished if the plot is left in good condition.
.v All new plot holders pay a one-off non-refundable temporary structure fee based on the number of existing sheds, polytunnels, greenhouses, and henhouses on your plot.
2.6 Membership and Plot Subscriptions are paid annually and are due by the 1st Sunday in September or soon after that, as announced by the Committee.
3 Site Safety, Security, Duty of Care and Site Audits
3.1 Members giving up their membership are asked to notify the Secretary and to return all keys to the site to a Member of the Committee.
3.2 Members must not cause a nuisance to neighbors on or off the site and must treat others with the consideration and respect with which they would wish to be treated themselves.
3.3 Members must not go on to other plots without permission. Taking crops, produce, implements, or other items from other plots is theft and will result in the immediate termination of the membership.
3.4 Members have a duty of care to everyone, including visitors and themselves.
3.5 Members should be aware that there are beekeepers and hives on the site. Speak to committee members on location if you or your visitors have allergies.
3.6 No unaccompanied visitors are permitted on the site.
3.7 The Association is not liable for loss by accident, fire, theft or damage to structures, tools, plants or contents on Members’ plots – or for injury to anyone. However, incidents of injury, theft and vandalism should be reported to the Committee and to the police when appropriate.
3.8 The entrance gates are always to be kept closed and locked after entering or leaving the site. This applies even if the gate is found to be already unlocked on arrival or departure. Repeat failure to lock the gate may lead to action by the Committee.
3.9 Only Members’ dogs are permitted on site.
3.10 Only Committee Members and those trained and authorized by the Committee may use the Association machinery. Any machinery used by Members must be in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions and is at risk to the user.
3.11 To comply with the terms of our Public Liability Insurance, the Committee is obliged to conduct an annual health and safety inspection of the site. Any structure or other issue considered hazardous by the Committee must be dealt with, repaired or removed by the Plot Holder a reasonable designated time upon receipt of written notification by the Committee.
3.12 Audits of your plots. The Management Committee and/or OCC will conduct two audits of your plot and any related structures throughout the year (usually March and August) and one mini-audit during the summer. These inspections serve to verify that your plot adheres to the TTACIC Rules and Health & Safety (see 3.11) set forth by TTACIC and the landlord, OCC.
.i If you are working your plot well and within our rules, you will not receive any communication from us after the audit has taken place.
.ii If there are any issues with your plot, we will write to you. The intention is to remind plot-holders about certain rules and/or alert members to any specific problem and ask for it to be rectified within a specified time. If there are serious and/or ongoing issues, the ultimate sanction is loss of membership. In most cases, however, matters are resolved. (See 14.3)
4 Note on Legal Limitations of plot use.
4.1 Using a plot as part of a commercial enterprise is strictly prohibited. A plot-holder may sell genuine surplus fruit, veg, herbs and flowers but must refrain from cultivating their plot to generate surpluses for sale.
4.2 Note that we strongly encourage plot-holders to share surpluses with other plot-holders, neighbors and those in need (via foodbanks or otherwise).
4.3 In accordance with the OCC Lease, the Allotments may not be used for any illegal or immoral purpose.
5.1 Cultivation is maintaining a plot by growing fruit and vegetables along with flowers and herbs. It includes ensuring that any area not currently planted is kept in good condition until it is next planted.
5.2 Weed-suppressing covering is allowed but should be used for at most 6 months at a time. The use of cardboard for mulching is acceptable. The use of carpet or carpet-like material on the plot is not allowed.
5.3 As a general rule, a plot-holder is expected to keep at least 75% of their plot(s) fully cultivated (either planted or prepared for planting)
5.4 A plot-holder is required to keep the borders of their plot(s) well-trimmed and maintain the care of adjacent paths.
5.5 Planting a single crop over more than 50% of your plot (i.e. a monoculture) would normally be an indication that the plot-holder is intending to create a surplus for commercial use, which is prohibited.
5.6 Fruit trees on dwarfing rootstocks are acceptable but must be of limited height. After pruning, fruit trees must be at most 2.5m in height. Shrubs planted as windbreaks or for flowers are acceptable in limited quantities. Height restrictions will refer to heights on January 1st of the subscription year.
5.7 Plants such as Bamboo that spread uncontrollably are not allowed. If in doubt, the Committee’s decision is final.
6 Weed Control
6.1 Good cultivation should limit weeds and ensure that weeds are not allowed to seed. The use of herbicides should follow good practice. Spraying glyphosate-based weed killers such as Roundup is strictly prohibited.
6.2 Spraying of herbicides/insecticides must be done so that the spray cannot spread to other plots.
6.3 Weeds, plant material or excess soil shall not be left on paths. Over time the material creates uneven surfaces and a tripping hazard. Please compost the material in your own or the shared compost bins throughout the allotment.
7 Pest Control
7.1 Control methods should respect other wildlife.
7.2 The use of insecticides must not cause problems for essential pollinators such as bees. The use of pheromone-based traps for pests such as raspberry beetle are preferred to the use of insecticide.
7.3 Slugs should be dealt with using nematodes, ferric-based slug bait, or traps (such as the traditional beer trap). It is illegal to use Metaldehyde-based pellets.
7.4 Wasps and rats should be reported to a committee member so that assistance can be given in their removal.
8.1 Plot-holders are strongly encouraged to compost waste plant matter. Bringing compostable plant matter from home is allowed. Other household waste, including meat or food with fat content, shall not be composted on-site.
9.1 Bonfires are allowed under strict conditions and must comply with OCC’s Guidance on Bonfires including:
.i Bonfires must not be left unattended.
.ii Bonfires must be controlled.
.iii Bonfires should only be lit when the weather conditions are appropriate.
.iv Bonfires should only be lit at times when the wind will not make the smoke a hazard. As a general rule, winds should be light and blowing into the allotments from where the bonfire is located.
.v Never use flammable material. You should never use oil, petrol, methylated spirits or any other type of flammable material to light a fire or to encourage it, as you could cause harm to yourself and to the environment.
.vi Plastics, rubber and painted materials must not be burnt.
.vii TTACIC has a shared discarded wood pile (Plot no. 156) which is burned from time to time. You may discard your wood here but do not include any trash, plastic, rubber or painted material in the pile.
9.2 Note: The Field Secretary is empowered to issue a complete temporary ban on all fires, including barbeques when the weather is dry. Such notice will be displayed on the two main gates
10 Livestock and Pets
10.1 You must receive written permission from the Committee to keep any livestock.
10.2 Hens are allowed but must be well cared for and kept confined subject to written application and permission from the committee. No more than 10 hens are permitted per plot holder, subject to the internal and external space requirements per bird.
.i The welfare of hens is solely the responsibility of the Plot Holder; TTACIC or OCC would not be responsible or liable for these. Plot Holders must prove by means of an RSPCA or independent vet inspection every 12 months that the animals are kept in a safe, clean and humane way. This cost, if any, must be met by the Plot Holder.
.ii Plot holders are required to display ‘name and phone details’ on the outside of the henhouse.
.iii Certificates must be submitted to the Committee at the Annual License renewal.
.iv Cockerels are strictly prohibited.
10.3 If you wish to keep bees, you must consult and receive written permission from the Committee, who will ensure that your location for your hives will not cause a problem for other plot-holders.
.i Plot Holders wishing to keep bees must demonstrate successful completion of appropriate training and be current members of the British Beekeeping Association with cover from its Public & Product Liability insurance naming TTACIC as an additional insured.
.ii No more than two hives will be permitted on any one plot and, ideally, should be sited where there is the least likelihood of interference with the use of other people’s plots
.iii Certificates must be submitted to the Committee at the Annual Subscription renewal.
10.4 Dogs must be kept on a lead at all times and must not cause a nuisance to other plot holders. Excrement should be removed from the site by the owner.
11 Sheds, Polytunnels, Greenhouses and Henhouses – Temporary Structures
11.1 Written application and permission from the Committee are required to construct a new or replace an existing temporary structure on your plot.
.i A plot may have a single shed, polytunnel, greenhouse or henhouse.
.ii Sheds are generally made of timber or recycled metal and should not exceed a 6’x8’ footprint or 4.5 sq. m. Sheds are for storing hand tools, pots and other gardening goods and should not be used as a ‘garden room’.
.iii Sheds made from block or brick are more permanent, requiring approval from Oxford City Council and are prohibited.
11.2 Written application and permission from the Committee are required to construct or replace a 2nd temporary structure on your plot. Plots shall not have more than 2 temporary structures.
.i The total footprint of all existing and proposed temporary structures shall not exceed 15 sq.m. for a 10-pole plot or 8 sq. m for a 5-pole plot.
11.3 Written application and permission from the Committee are required to construct or replace a henhouse.
.i Henhouses are subject to additional rules and certificates. See Section 9, Livestock and Pets.
11.4 All written applications for temporary structures should be discussed and made to the Field Secretary in the first instance or the Secretary. The application should have a general plot diagram, approximate location of existing and proposed temporary structures, and an acknowledgement that you have discussed the placement with the adjacent plots, particularly regarding sunlight and that neighboring plots concur with the placement. The Committee will approve or deny the application within ten days of receipt.
11.5 Storage of petrol, oil, liquid gas (petroleum and butane) and other such flammable and combustible liquids on your plot is strictly prohibited by OCC and TTACIC.
12.1 Plot holders are expected to install methods for rainwater harvesting.
12.2 The water troughs are provided to water seedlings and new plantings. Crops requiring regular watering should be maintained with harvested rainwater.
12.3 Absolutely NOTHING is to be added to water in the troughs. Do not use troughs for washing. If you wish to wash tools, hands etc., you must use water in a bucket.
13 Parking and Car Access
13.1 Parking on the site is limited to the car park spaces at the main gate and the small car park adjacent to the substation.
13.2 Temporary parking on other paths adjacent to your plot is restricted for delivering or removal of material from your plot.
13.3 Driving on grass paths to deliver or remove material should not be done after long periods of rain or when the ground is soaked. Ruts form by the repeated passage of the wheels of vehicles and may create a health and safety issue.
14 Complaints and Breaches of Rules
14.1 If members are unhappy with the site, the Committee or another member, the Committee will deal with complaints. It will only investigate complaints made in writing to the Secretary. Any person against whom a complaint has been made will be made aware of the problem and has the right to respond in writing or put their case to the Committee in person. All complaints must be referred to the Committee before any outside body is approached.
14.2 The Field Secretary is empowered to give a verbal warning if, in his/her opinion, a plot-holder breaches any rules. The Secretary must be notified immediately if such a warning has been given. The Secretary will then inform the rest of the Committee.
14.3 Breach of Rules
.i First Notice of Breach of Rules Where there has been a breach of any of the rules set, members may be sent a written notice by the Committee asking them to remedy the breach(es) within a reasonable time limit. Note that reasonable time depends on the nature of the breach and may vary between 14 days and 2 months or immediately if there is a clear Health and Safety risk to others.
.ii Second / Final Notice of Breach of Rules If the breach is not remedied within the reasonable time limit or the member does not reply to the notice, then the Committee may terminate the Membership and License to Occupy the plot subscription on the issue of a 14-day final notice delivered either by email, nailed to their plot structure or to their registered address itemising the breach and what they must do to rectify it. If a member’s written notice relates to their having excessive materials on their plot and if these are not cleared, the Committee reserves the right to organise clearance itself and reclaim the costs from the member.
.iii End of Final Notice Period Failure by a plot-holder to rectify a breach after the end of the 14-day notice will result in forfeiture of their License to Occupy plot(s) and Membership Subscriptions.
15 Directors, Committee Members, Contact via WhatsApp TTAA Plot Holders Group **
Gillian Turnbull, Plot 180, Director, Chair**
Terry Young MBE, Plot 105A, 110A, Director, Committee Member**
Helen Fetzer, Plot 148, 186 Director, Treasurer**
Edward Pitson, Plot 112, 113, Committee Member**
Kathy O’Donnell, Plot 177, Director, Secretary**
Nela Tait, Plot 105B, 107, Committee Member**
Tom Dyra, Plot 137, 138, Director, Field Secretary
16 Contact details for Field Secretary and Secretary
16.1 Where the rules require written application and permission, please contact the Field Secretary or the Secretary.
.i Field Secretary: Tom Dyra, Plot 137-138, Contact Tom at his plot or via the number posted on the Shop
16.2 Committee members work at the Seed, Feed and Compost Shop most Saturdays, 10-12