Febusseys – now known as the Allotments

The Geddington Allotments

are situated in the Grafton Road
on land belonging to Boughton Estates.

It is surrounded by a stone wall on three sides – the fourth occupied by cottages, having been built sideways onto the road. When this plot of land was first offered for use as an allotment, it had mature apple trees in it and it has been suggested that the Estate used the land to cultivate and grow several other types of fruit trees. What isn’t known, is how the name for this plot – Febusseys – came about. (Any information on this would be gratefully received by the website.)

The Cottages overlooking the allotments on Grafton Road
The Cottages overlooking the allotments on Grafton Road

These weren’t the only allotments, there were some behind the old cricket field on land off the old A43 near the sewage works, there were also more further up Grafton Road reaching right down to the River Ise and more on Grange Road.  Gradually, the allotments were reclaimed by the Estate and the only ones now left are those that are in use in Grafton Road.

The allotments were always occupied, as indeed they are now, (but see below) as growing vegetables was, and still is, such a sensible thing to do. If you have the interest, that is, because it is hard work, and constant – you can’t weed it in March, sew some seeds and come back in June to pick the results – a weekly visit is essential, even if for only half an hour.  If you are retired, a daily visit during the growing season is most pleasurable, working amongst other like-minded gardeners.

The growing season isn’t only about vegetables and fruit, it also applies to weeds.

It’s an undisputed fact that weeds grow quicker than your cherished produce!

Like any community project, there are rules. These are designed to benefit all the plot holders and give guidelines on working in a neighbourly fashion with the other plot holders.

Some of the rules:
1. The holder (of the allotment) shall cultivate the land in a husbandlike manner and keep it clear of weeds.
2. The holder shall not make any encroachment or commit any trespass on any other allotment or adjoining Estate land, nor do any damage to fences, hedges, gates, ditches etc.
3. Each allotment shall be held on a yearly tenancy commencing 25th March.
4. The year’s rent shall be payable in advance of 25th March in each year and shall be paid whether demanded or not.
5. The holder shall not erect any building upon the land without the Estate’s written consent.
6. The holder shall not sub-let the whole or any part of his/her allotment.
7. All garden waste shall be burnt or disposed of away from the allotments. No waste shall be dumped in ditches or on access paths.
8. In the case of an infringement of the foregoing, the holder’s occupancy shall thereupon cease. No compensation will be paid for growing crops.
9. The occupancy may be determined by six months written notice given by either the Estate or the occupier.
10. The holder shall ensure that the grass paths adjacent to his allotment are cut regularly.
These rules were set out in 1992.

At the beginning of this piece, I said all the allotments were occupied. Recently, however, one allotment holder has decided to give up his plot, so a rare opportunity now arises –
a plot for hire!

If you are interested
If you have the time and energy
If you feel that you can make the necessary commitment,

and only if,

then contact Terry Lane by telephone: 01536 744930.

Terry on his allotment
Terry on his allotment




5 comments on “Febusseys – now known as the Allotments

  • Melvyn Hopkins says:

    Febusseys? I have never heard of that name before. It was always known by our family as Plevusseys.

    • Hello Melvyn
      We got the name ‘Febusseys’ from the Spencer family who have gardened for some decades and used to have an allotment. I’ll check your name ‘Plevusseys’ with my Spencer contact.

  • Melvyn Hopkins says:

    I have never seen the name in print so do not know the correct spelling, but ‘Plevusseys’ was the name I heard my father use and my grandfather. It was handed down to them by my great grandfather York Hopkins who moved to Church Farm in the 1890s. He rented all the land from Grafton Road up to and beyond the avenues towards Brigstock from the Duke. His farm buildings were next to the allotment which in turn became the Wood Yard, so I am sure he would have known all the old field names. So ‘Plevusseys’ is the name I will hand down to my son and grandson whatever the outcome

  • Jim Harker says:

    I’ve always known it as “Febice’s ( not sure about the spelling).
    Jim Harker.

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