Allotments could play a vital role in a town's fight against climate change, a report has found.
Kendal's Climate Change Citizens' Jury, formed by town councillors in October when 20 residents were recruited to take part, has deliberated for more than 26 hours on the question: 'What should Kendal do about climate change?’
The jury produced a report looking to answer the question and among the findings was a need to find funding to reduce food waste and a recommendation for a 'waste-into-wellbeing' programme and increased education in this area.
The jury’s report said: “This is aimed at enabling people to make good food choices, teach cookery skills and how to avoid food waste.”
It recommended more space for people to grow their own food and called for more allotments to be developed.
The report added: "The council must identify more land suitable for use as allotments.
“It should be a requirement of new housing developments that allotments be created as part of that development.
“Satisfy demand by dividing of plots into smaller sections, or the sharing of plots should be made possible.
“New allotment holders should be given the opportunity to join a free introductory course on growing your own.”
Alvin Finch, mayor of Kendal, has championed the town's allotments and said they had been more valuable this year than ever before – and not just for growing food.
He said: "At the start of the allotment season last year, no one could have envisaged the challenges that we would soon be facing.
"The lockdown presented allotment holders with a unique opportunity to utilise their time by going down to their allotments most days.
"The Government did not restrict or ban access to allotments; it could form part of your daily exercise.
"Social-distancing guidance, new ways of safely working, and common sense were soon adopted by tenants and gardening continued in earnest throughout the year.”