The Charity owns 2 allotment sites, The Billets Hart Allotments and The William Hobbayne Community Gardens.

Whilst they are different, they are both at the heart of the Community and are regarded as Sister Sites.  All the plot holders are encouraged to help each other, work together and inspire each other to provide a vibrant and social heart of the community in Hanwell.

The Billets Hart Site at the bottom of Green Lane is the elder and larger of the 2 sites. The Community Gardens are smaller growing spaces situated just off St Margaret’s road overlooking the Grand Union Canal.

Billets Hart Allotments:

There are around 70 plots (full and half plots) which are bordered on 2 sides by the river Brent and accessed via Green Lane.

Originally a common meadow it has historically been used for smallholdings and open pasture land over the centuries.  It forms part of the land which was given by William Hobbayne in 1484 which led to the establishment of the Charity of William Hobbayne. The land was leased to the Hanwell District Council for use as an allotment garden in 1922.  However in 2008 The Charity decided to manage the allotments themselves to promote the community spirit and offer an opportunity for those residing in the postal district of Hanwell W7 to continue to grow their own food in a sustainable manner (and/or domestic livestock)  Many people keep chickens for eggs and we also have 3 registered bee-keepers on the site.

In 2009, the Billets Hart Association was formed, of which every plot holder is a member.  There is a committee of 9 elected plot holders, in addition 2 representatives of the William Hobbayne Charity act as Site Managers for the allotments.  The purpose of the committee is to enable the self-management of the site, to ensure and promote a productive, co-ordinated and peaceful place for members to grow and cultivate their crops and to help those around them and in the community.

Fund raising is an important part of the social activities on the site in order to pay for maintenance and help towards other projects to benefit the site. In the last few years we have had an increasing number of events and we are working to strengthen the ties with our newer sister site.

Typical Events that take place during the year:-

  • 4 -5 “working parties” per year.  All plot holders are encouraged to lend a hand for a few hours together to help maintain the site to benefit all.
  • Spring BBQ and planning for the annual Hanwell Carnival Stall
  • Hanwell Carnival Procession (the first time the allotment holders joined in – we won 1st Prize!)
  • Allotment Stall at the Carnival where we raised over £500 in 2012
  • Summer BBQ and Social
  • Bonfire Night, BBQ and Firework Party – including the Community Gardeners – a great turnout!
  • Our own version of Gardener’s Question Time – January 2013 for both sites.

The William Hobbayne Community Gardens

The Gardens are the result of transforming derelict land beside the Grand Union Canal into 55 mini growing spaces (3m X 3m) for local people to grow their own fruit and vegetables and as a community space.  Future plans include the creation of a pond to encourage wild life, “bug runs” to support wild life and a community orchard.

In the Autumn of 2009 the Charity entered into negotiations with the Canal and River Trust (formerly the British Waterways Board) to lease the land behind 86 to 110 St. Margaret’s Road.  With the grateful assistance of funding from Ealing Council and The Heathrow Environment and Community Scheme (among others) in 2011 a lease was entered into for the land. Site works followed which included the clearance of accumulated rubbish, sub-soil drainage, water supply and the introduction of fresh top soil.

A number of corporate bodies were very helpful by providing a range of volunteers for the project.  These include British Waterways, Starbucks, Sky TV and Bovis/Lend lease.

Gardeners began their work on individual plots in April 2012.  At the same time the William Hobbayne Community Gardens Association was formed with its first Annual general Meeting being held in September 2012. Two representatives of the Charity of William Hobbayne act as site managers and participate in the works of the Association’s site committee.

Bee keeping was established in 2013.

In October 2014 The Charity of William Hobbayne purchased the freehold of the Community Gardens to ensure the long term security of this much valued community project.


STOP PRESS…

In 2015 work began on building a pond.


Typical Events that take place during the year:-

  • 4  “working parties” per year.  All plot holders are encouraged to lend a hand for a few hours together to help maintain the site to benefit all.
  • Site clearance and digging the pond
  • Hedge planting and the maintenance of the paths.

In addition combined events with the Billets Hart Allotments include:-

  • Bonfire Night, BBQ and Firework Party – held at the Billets hart allotments
  • Our own version of Gardener’s Question Time – January 2013 for both sites.

Allotments are very popular and we do have waiting lists on both sites which we manage on a first come first serve basis.  You must have a permanent residence in W7 to apply.  If you are interested in joining the waiting list or would like to find out more information, please contact the William Hobbayne Charity.

0208 810 0277

hobbaynecharity@btinternet.com