A COUNCIL has agreed not to implement a controversial hike in allotment rents following an earlier row.

Allotment holders had rebelled when rises of more than 100 per cent, costing hundreds of pounds for some, were proposed last year.

Hyndburn’s Cabinet yesterday agreed to introduce rises of between £10 and £20 for the majority of larger plots following consultations with allotment groups.

The council is also to change the mechanism by which water charges are applied to drive down costs.

The council said a proposed shift to a single flat rate of 11p per square metre per annum would ultimately make water charges fairer.

Cabinet member for allotments Ciaran Wells said: “Allotments are very popular in Hyndburn and a great way to get out in the fresh air, get some exercise and have the satisfaction of your family eating fruit and veg you’ve grown yourself.

“As part of the consultation we’ve asked allotment tenants, people on the waiting list and the local Federation of Allotments, a range of questions about allotments and what they would consider a reasonable rent increase.

“The new rates mean that 61 per cent, which is nearly 500 of our plots, will cost tenants just £35 or less each year; a modest amount compared with other local recreational activities.

“I’d like to thank Hyndburn Federation of Allotments and the National Association of Allotments for their involvement and continued support.”