GARDENERS who dug in to preserve their prized plots have staged a celebration to mark their achievement.

Following an unsuccessful bid to purchase Sacriston Lane allotments in Witton Gilbert, in the summer of 2018, the parish council and the tenants were informed by the new owners they were required to vacate their plots by November 2020.

Following a prolonged campaign to buy the site on behalf of villagers, the parish council confirmed it has now completed the purchase, securing the allotments for the future.

The council thanked all the people and bodies which backed the campaign, providing funding and legal advice.

Particular thanks was given to Durham County Council Durham MP Mary Kelly Foy, and H&H Land Agents.

Parish council chair, Daniel Lynch, said: “In the polarised world we live in, this campaign demonstrates that by working collectively, and across party lines, communities can succeed in shaping their environments.”

The parish council staged a celebratory get-together for all who backed the campaign, “digging for victory”, at the 113-year-old allotment site.

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