Garden the Town

Garden the Town is a Luton Council scheme to release unused patches of land to local residents’ groups to create community gardens.

Who can apply?

The scheme is open to established community groups. This is to ensure that there are enough volunteers to manage a patch of land, and so that we know who to contact if there are any problems.

It is not currently open to individuals, but there are lots of volunteering opportunities with existing projects. You can also apply to the council for an allotment if that would suit your needs better.

How to apply:

First, download the application form.

Fill it in, and email it to

You’ll need to provide us with a contact person and some details about the organisation. Then tell us about the plot you’re interested in, and what plans you have for it. We’ll need a Google Maps image so that we can see exactly which plot of land we’re talking about.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How long does the process take?

The process will take between 6-8 weeks to complete unless there are complications (which Luton Council will contact you about)

2. Why does the process take so long?

This is due to various checks and consultations that need to be carried out by Council departments and local Utility companies.

3. Why is there a consultation?

The consultation is required to ensure there are no outstanding planning applications on the land, and that there are no underground services that could pose a danger to you or others, for example electricity cables or water pipes.

4. Do I need insurance?

No. The site is covered by Luton Council’s insurance as long as the site is managed in line with this application form.

5. Who can apply for a licence to occupy?

Any community groups that are based in Luton. You do not need to be a formally registered charity but must be able to show that you have a shared purpose (e.g. constitution) if asked for.

6. Will I need to be responsible for any trees on the land?

No, we will continue to maintain the trees.

7. Can I install a fence around the land?

No. The Council and the utility services will need to retain access at all times for inspections and repairs to the infrastructure.

8. What changes to landscaping can I make?

Before any changes to the landscape are done you will need to submit details of any landscape proposals so that we can consider them.

9. Does it cost anything?

There is no cost to apply for a licence, but there is a cost to purchasing insurance and this cost will depend on the insurance company used.

10. What happens at the end of the agreement?

The licence agreement runs for 5 years. The Council will inspect the site and the licence can be renewed again or terminated by either party by giving 1 months’ notice.