MAULDEN SOCIETY OF GARDENERS
The Trading Hut, Moor Lane
The first Committee meeting was held on 8th May 1972. The society came about because the Parish Council had resolved to sell the allotments. It is not entirely clear why but it is believed that this had something to do with the Bowling Green in some way – quite what that was has been lost in the mists of time. A meeting was called. The allotment holders who were concerned to try and prevent this sale and thereby lose their allotments agreed that they should work together. They succeeded in stopping the sale of the allotments and then formed the Society to benefit its approximately 30 members by purchasing in bulk (and therefore saving money) the basic fertilisers, seed etc. that they needed. At first these items were weighed out on bathroom scales in a member’s garage.
The Parish Council granted £700 to the Society. The Society took over the tenancy of an allotment plot with permission to erect a Trading Hut. This was actually a wood and asbestos garage. The big chance came when they had the opportunity to purchase a “Prefab” from London for £1000. This “Prefab” is still used as the trading hut today although it has been altered considerably inside over time.
The ethos of the Society remains the same today. It is run by an elected Committee who buy in bulk and sell to its members as cheaply as possible. Volunteers help in the weighing out of products (we now have electronic scales especially for the purpose) and manning the counter when the Trading hut is open. So, overheads are kept to an absolute minimum although we do have to pay rent for the allotment the hut stands on, the electricity that is used, public liability insurance and the upkeep of the premises.
Anyone can belong to the Society – it is not for allotment holders or just for the inhabitants of Maulden alone. We have around 200 members who each pay £1.50 per year subscription. We are now essentially a mini garden centre selling a wide range of goods that gardeners may require. The products stocked expand over time as the need arises and we can usually find a product on our shelves to solve most gardening problems.
We are open every Sunday morning from 10 am – 12 noon apart from a break of about a month during the period leading up to and including Christmas and the New Year. We also open on Friday evenings 7pm-8pm from the first week in April usually until about the end of June.
You are welcome to come down and have a look around to see if you could benefit from the products that we sell. Unfortunately we cannot offer you a cup of tea because we still do not have all mod cons i.e. no running water.
For further information please contact the Chairman: Alan Barnard on 403537.