Page 5 - ALG Issue 1 2022
P. 5

“To zoom or not to zoom” – personally I would prefer not to, but in the present circumstance and with the infection rates changing, and the new varieties of Covid increasing weekly, then my own feelings on the matter pale into insignificance. So, Zoom it is.
Zoom is an opportunity all members could make use of if they have the technology, and the inclination. Take
a normal site AGM; if there is some trouble then the attendance usually goes up; if the site is under threat from developers, I would hope attendance reaches the 80% plus mark. But let’s be honest, most site quorate numbers are around 25%, and sometimes it may be difficult to get that number of attendees.
But with a Zoom meeting you do not have to leave your house, the weather is not an excuse, and travelling – what travelling? Zoom is a way to find out what is going on, and just maybe you could get involved.
That got me thinking about the democratic representation of our members in the running of our organisation. Some areas are well represented on some committees, whilst others are not.
Representation is also a difficult nut
to crack. Historically, my own region had members from the Fylde coast, the Wirral, Merseyside and Greater Manchester. At the moment it is just Greater Manchester; we will do our best for the other regions of the North West; it would be better if we had wider representation. But with Zoom the travel problem is eliminated.
I believe a broad representation has been achieved to some extent in the Eastern region, where the regional committee has members from each county as well as members from the major cities. I feel this is a pattern that could be worth following. After some discussion, it might even have a place in the rule book.
It might be a good idea, but if we cannot get enough willing volunteers then it will not happen.
Following on from the last Chairman’s comments, I had an interesting question from one site who actually register their plotholders’ assistants. This will give the assistants some recognition on site, and it will formalise the arrangement for that site. They say it works well for them and has done for some years. I still have
Zoom is a way to find out what is going on, and just maybe you could get involved
the question of what happens when
the plotholder gives up. Is the assistant left high and dry? Do they work with someone else? Or do the plotholder and the assistant ride off into the sunset? I still feel the role of the assistant could be an apprenticeship to gaining a plot,
if that is what the buddy wants, and the site feels it will work for them.
So, 2022, what will this new growing season bring? A damp start, leading to sunny days, warm weather, and it only raining at night, with a wonderful June and July of hot weeks, with occasional warm evening rain, easing into an August of dry days and clear blue skies... and now wake up, but we can but “perchance to dream”.
John Irwin
          Insurance for Allotment Associations from someone who really knows their onions.
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                                     Allotment and Leisure Gardener 5

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