Note to all allotment holders – if you’d like to enter The Milford & Makeney Flower & Produce Show in September 2024, please see the web page here for more details.

There have been allotments in Milford for 220 years – some of the oldest in the country. The picture below, from Bank Buildings before when the co-op (now velo Bavarian) was built (pre 1920’s) shows the allotments were even more extensive back then, and spilled over to the west of the A6 as well as the current east, into much of the land that’s now Little Fallows Image©Belper Historical Society/Adrian Farmer

Bridge View Allotments


Bridge View Allotments cover an extensive area. There are 43 allotments in all, flowing down the hill from Bridge View, past East Terrace and West Terrace, above the former Holy Trinity Church and then down to the A6, occupying most of the land between the church and the Children’s Play Area. The Milford Community Greenspace (see website here) has taken the 3 allotments above the Holy Trinity Church.

Now open for anyone living within a 5 mile radius of the Bridge View Allotments to rent, they are run by Bridge View Allotments Limited, a co-operative of which all allotment holders and their partners are members, with equal voting rights. Regular meetings of the co-operative are arranged, including an AGM towards the end of November where the holders of posts on the association are voted in. Currently the chair is Maureen Kingman, treasurer Carol Hawley and secretary David Moreton. Rents for the following January are also agreed at the AGM. If you are interested in joining the waiting list for allotments at Bridge View, please contact Carol by e-mail on including your address and contact details.


Reputed to be some of the earliest allotments in England, the land was bought in 1832 by The Strutts and converted to allotments for their workers in Milford. Part of it was already allotments, as can be seen in the plan below from 1805 (courtesy of the Derby Records Office), owned by Mrs Martha Cock, before it was bought by The Strutts. So there have been allotments on some of the site for 220 years.

Here are a couple of photos from Bridge View Allotment’s Strutt heyday at the turn of the last century Images©Belper Historical Society/Adrian Farmer.

By the 1960’s The Strutts had decided they wanted to sell the allotments for housing and for 15 years they were uncultivated and allowed to become overgrown. Several planning applications were made for housing, including extending East Terrace, but never came to anything. In 1976 Mick Smith and a group of fellow residents approached The Strutts and asked if Mick and friends could convert them back to allotments and The Strutts agreed. The allotments came back into cultivation and Mick managed them for The Strutts for 46 years, before handing the reins over to Carol and Maureen in 2022.

In October 2023 The Strutts offered to gift the land to the Bridge View Allotment Association and after extensive consultation and research to understand what the Association’s liabilities would be if they accepted The Strutts offer, the Association voted to accept the offer in an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) in February 2024. At the same time it was agreed that the Association become a co-op, and in April 2024 we became a registered co-operative, Bridge View Allotments Limited, where all allotment holders and their partners are members with equal voting rights.

Raising Funds

The legal costs of transferring the land from The Strutts to ourselves could be up to £2000 so we are devising several fund raising initiatives. We have had a series of successful plant sales of plants and seedlings raised in our own allotments and gardens in May & June, photos below.

The plant market in Belper Market Square on Sunday 12th May

Belper Goes Green festival on Saturday 8th June (thanks to the Co-op for allowing us to share their space)

The Family Fun Day in Hazelwood on Saturday 22nd June (thanks to Lubrizol)

We are continuing to sell plants from various points round the allotments so please support us by buying some. If you want to make a direct donation to this cause please contact Carol on and she’ll send you our account details.

Other Recent Initiatives

Several other new initiatives have been started recently.

A big disadvantage of the site is that it has no mains water, and so the first initiative in 2023 was to try to rectify this. A grant was obtained from Belper Town Council for Severn Trent to survey the site, who thought there was a pipe running from Bridge View to the end of East Terrace and suggested we try to find it. Fruitless digging of several large holes along the supposed route of the pipe was undertaken but no pipe was found – it turns out it was terminated at the Bridge View end.  Connecting water to the site at the Bridge View end would cost £3000 at least, and looked to be technically very difficult. In consequence in September 2023 the idea was abandoned, in favour of building a large rainwater collection device for all the allotments.

Grants were obtained from the Central England Co-operative Society and from Belper Town Council for the materials and then the allotment holders all worked together over two months to complete the work. As with everything on the allotments, all the materials had to be carried onto the site by hand!

First trenches were dug and a concrete mixer hired and concrete footings laid.

Concrete footings complete

Then the wooden structure was constructed and 4 x 1 cubic metre IBC’s moved into place.

Finally a plastic coated corrugated iron roof was added and the water station was completed April 2024.

The allotments now have the capacity to collect 4000 litres/888 gallons of rainwater for use on the site.

The second initiative was annual inspections of allotments. This started in July 2023 and following the inspection two holders of uncultivated allotments were asked to relinquish their plots.

The third initiative has been formation of starter plots to encourage younger/new allotment holders. Two overgrown allotments were cleared by a 15 strong work party of volunteers over a weekend in February 2023 – pictures below.

Before clearance

During clearance

Removal of trees

Clearance complete.

The area was split into 4 starter allotments, all of which were taken, and they are all being cultivated.

Will Durkin by his starter allotment

The process took place all over again in January 2024, this time clearing allotments that the former tenants relinquished after the July 2023 inspection.

Two large parties of volunteers cleared the allotments over the 19th and 20th January – for more details and photos than below see the article here.

Overgrown allotments before clearance

End of day 1 – allotments nearly cleared of overgrowth

End of Day 2 – allotments completely cleared and starting to be dug over.

These newly cleared allotments have be split into four half allotments and have all been occupied.

If you live within 5 miles of the Bridge View Allotments (the former Holy Trinity Church at the bottom of the allotments to be precise),  and would like to go on the waiting list just drop an email to  including your address and contact details.

Mart’s Meadow

Mart’s Meadow is a smaller and newer set of allotments, situated between the A6 and the River Derwent just south of the bottom end of the riverside path in the Hopping Mill Meadow estate. See here for a write up of how these allotments were created.

To find out if there are any allotments available to rent on Mart’s Meadow, e-mail