A Cambridge City Council website

Cambridge City Council

Council and democracy

Home > Council and Democracy > Agenda and minutes

Agenda and minutes

Venue: St Philip’s Church Centre, 185 Mill Road, Cambridge,CB1 3AN

Contact: Democratic Services  Committee Manager

Note: Map can be found at the following link http://www.bing.com/search?q=st+philips+church+mill+road+cambridge&src=IE-SearchBox&FORM=IENAD2 

No. Item


Welcome, Introduction and Apologies for Absence pdf icon PDF 137 KB


Apologies were received from Councillors Benstead, Johnson and Hart.


Declarations of Interest


None were declared.


Minutes pdf icon PDF 306 KB


The minutes of the meeting held on 11 October 2018 were signed as a correct record by the Chair.


Matters and Actions Arising from the Minutes pdf icon PDF 130 KB


The Action Sheet was noted and an updated copy could be viewed at the following link under ‘Committee Action Sheet’:





Open Forum


MOP: Has up to £70 million of Government money been paid to Cambridge City Council for up to 500 council / affordable homes, which includes up to 200 houses on Mill Road Depot to be built in two years’ time.


Councillor Herbert: To clarify the Council had up to five years to start the build of the 500 council / affordable homes, further named projects had been added to the rolling delivery programme. The Council had £70 million in reserve as part of the devolution deal held by the Combined Authority. In purchasing Cromwell Road as part of the delivery programme a chunk of the funding was to build 40% Council housing. The Council will use of all the £70 million and some of its own reserve to meet the 500 target.


MOP: Around 350 private hire drivers who live in Cambridge are registered with South Cambridgeshire District Council, because this is cheaper. It is a tax haven for taxis because it saves drivers money and they are not subject to the city’s pollution controls. What could be done about this please? I had been informed that our MP had a private bill stopping drivers from ‘picking up’ in Cambridge unless they were registered in the city, but this is incorrect.


Councillor Moore: The taxi licensing legislation was out of date and not fit for purpose.  If you picked up a cab by standing in the street it had to be legally a hackney cab licensed by Cambridge City Council. If a resident phoned for a taxi cab they could be licensed from anywhere in the country which was a concern. Those taxis licenced by Cambridge City Council have to meet very strict regulations, including safeguarding moving to lower emissions and electric vehicles which some authorities did not have the same standard.


Councillor Robertson: Suggested talking to South Cambridgeshire District Council to determine if both authorities could agree to same standard when issuing licences.


Councillor Moore; The City Council Licensing Team had worked with South Cambridgeshire to see if they would meet the same standard as the City Council but without success. With a new Licensing Manager at South Cambridgeshire discussions were proving more positive and it was hoped an agreement could be reached. 

Councillor Taylor: Would speak to the Chair of the South Cambridgeshire Environment Committee to raise the issue and to encourage officers to work with Cambridge City Council on the matter. ACTION



MOP: Parking and congestion in the Abbey ward area particularly in and around Wadloes Road is a problem exacerbated by the football parking on match days. What can be done about it?


Councillor Whitehead: Much of the problem on Wadloes Road is from vehicles waiting to turn right into McDonalds, the legally parked cars on the left hand side of the road do not leave a big enough gap for vehicles of any size to get through. A request has been made for the double yellow lines to be extended so that there would be sufficient space for vehicles to proceed down Wadloes Road past those vehicles waiting to turn right.


The County Council and Stagecoach had set up the Park and Ride Scheme on match days, those fans travelling to the stadium by Park and Ride would then be picked up by Stagecoach. It was slowly becoming more and more popular and Councillor Massey had requested Cambridge United to advertise the scheme more prominently. 


Would enquire with residents who lived in close proximity to Abbey Stadium if a resident parking scheme would be welcomed


MOP: Based on research undertaken Visitor Permits are very expensive compared to other cities who charge little or nothing for these permits. Could concessions be given to those on low income or over 65’s as it currently cost £12 for five tickets for those residents who have resident parking in their street.  For those on pension or low income this was a lot of money.


Councillor Jones: If an individual required medical help on a regular basis, which could be supplied by a relative, residents apply for a free visitors permit.

Councillor Taylor: Believed it could be possible for residents to apply for free visitor parking if they attended to that resident on a regular basis. Blue badge holders were eligible for free permits when visiting. Suggested some of the residents parking could be made into 1 or 2 hour free parking space.


Councillor Jones: Had started to explore the issue of permits which run out at the end of the year .It was worth looking on the County Council’s website to look at how to qualify for free visitor parking; also for residents to talk with their doctor about obtaining a note to qualify for visitors permits as they required regular care / check-up. Would like to read the research undertaken regarding the charges in other cities and investigate further. ACTION



Policing and Safer Neighbourhoods pdf icon PDF 312 KB


The Committee received a report from the Police Representative, regarding policing and safer neighbourhood’s trends. Sergeant Stevenson introduced PC Leigh Browne and PC Sean Tanvir who had both joined the team in October. 


The report outlined actions taken since the last reporting period. The current emerging issues/neighbourhood trends for each ward were also highlighted (see report for full details). Previous issue of focus and engagement activity noted in the report were:


  i.  Dealing of drugs, drug use and the associated anti-social behaviour


In response to questions and comments from members of the public and committee Sergeant Stevenson made the following comments


  i.  Noted the Councillor’s comments that members of the public had a lack of confidence in the police locally; reporting incidents to the police seemed to have no impact on reducing crime in Cambridge and was not acted upon. 

  ii.  It was difficult to give feedback to individuals who reported crime to the police as the information was anonymised if the control room deemed the information to be intelligence rather than an incident when sending through to the relevant officer / team. This was to done to protect the individual so that the source of information could not be revealed to the subject.

  iii.  The police impact team dealt with drug enforcement issues; child exploitation, particularly around drug enforcement and county line issues and human trafficking a on a daily basis; the majority of this work would not be seen by the public and would happen without a uniformed police officer or marked police car.

  iv.  Drug activity was targeted by the police on a non-stop basis. When a drug dealer had been removed from the streets he/she was quickly replaced with another dealer.

  v.  Each case had to be prioritised when reported and determined what resources were available and when.

  vi.  Would encourage members of public to continue to report any crime to the police and not be discouraged, the information supplied was invaluable; members of the public were the police’s ‘eyes and ears’.

 vii.  Acknowledged that Councillors always encouraged residents to report crime and should continue to do so even when members of the public believed they had seen no improvement over a long reporting period time.

viii.  Advised there were certain locations in every ward were drug dealing historically occurred due to the environment. Would be happy to work with Councillors to look at how the surrounding environment could be changed to make it harder for drug dealing to take place but questioned how this could be resourced.

  ix.  The tactics used by criminals were constantly changing and being updated.

  x.  The longer term solution was a question of national policy. 

  xi.  There appeared to be an increase in street dealing due to the success of police targeting the ‘cuckooing’ problem, where vulnerable people were forced out of their own homes by organised crime groups to use as a drugs den for a period of time.

 xii.  Agreed the culture of carrying weapons had increased; historically criminals carried weapons to defend themselves against other organised crime groups. Young people in the area were now copying this trend, which was also on the rise nationally.

xiii.  There was no police policy to ignore certain types of calls from the public.

xiv.  If a member of a public had been advised no resource was available to investigate the crime reported, it meant the crime that caused the most harm and put the most vulnerable people at risk had to be prioritised, with the resource available. This was based on the risk assessment of threat, risk and harm.

xv.  The control room took a large number of calls on a daily basis. Cambridge City averaged 35-55 crimes a day, with reported incidents averaging 200-300 a day.

xvi.  Noted comments that the control room could enhance the way they responded to calls from the public by providing additional information so the caller felt they were not being ignored or forgotten about.

xvii.  Believed the Cumulative Impact Zone (CIZ) had worked very effectively on Mill Road as had the Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO). Decisions on policies would go through the Superintendent’s office. 

xviii.  The Police were asked to comment on Premise Licence applications, such as the sale of alcohol. There was a dedicated Licencing Police Officer who would be asked to comment on such applications but not the Neighbourhood Teams. Therefore he had not been consulted on the Tesco application on East Road.

xix.  Confirmed there was no policy to withdraw public patrol. Proactive patrols were undertaken whenever possible.

xx.  The role of the 24 Pro-Active Response Team was to attend calls for service. Any spare time in their day would cover priorities set in advance which may include pro-active patrol in the city or plain clothes undercover work.

xxi.  There was a recommended staffing level for the Pro-Active Response Team with an increase in staff at peak times.

xxii.   Additional funding to provide additional resource would always be welcomed but could not comment on how much was required.

xxiii.  Agreed that rising crime levels impacted on a number of people in society, rising insurance costs to business and increased costs to the consumer.

xxiv.  The amount of money received by Cambridgeshire Police had reduced over a period of time. 

xxv.  The Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) had released a survey asking if the tax payer would support an increase in their council tax precept to provide additional policing.

xxvi.  A third of the crime reported in Cambridge City was bike theft.

xxvii.  Cambridge was one of densest CCTV covered areas nationally but the quality of images varied dramatically.

xxviii.  Organisations covered by the Regulation Investigatory Powers Act were only allowed to hold information that was not being used by an active crime investigation for 30 days.

xxix.  If a cycle theft had been reported and it did take time to investigate and determine where there might be CCTV in the area. The owners of the CCTV would be spoken to and asked if the offence had been captured, if the images had shown anything that could help identify the thief.  If not, there was no point in asking for a copy of the CCTV as it could not be used for evidence. However the information could and would be used for intelligence.

xxx.  There were certain hotspots in the City for cycle theft and some thieves tended to be creatures of habit regarding location.

xxxi.  The claim that one bike a day was stolen outside Parkside Pool sounded very high and the matter needed to be investigated further to determine if Parkside was a  high profile area.

xxxii.  Would investigate why a food outlet had started parking under Elizabeth Way Bridge.

xxxiii.  Acknowledged there was a large amount of paperwork that the Police had to complete. But believed the individual who had used a legal power should complete their own paperwork.

xxxiv.  In response to a residents concern of drug dealing, associated anti-social behaviour and sex workers around the vicinity of the budget hotels on Newmarket Road (particularly the Travelodge); the Police routinely worked with all the budget hotels in Cambridge and training was carried out with staff to identify child sexual exploitation.

xxxv.  Would continue to work with residents and the Travelodge to facilitate conversation but suggested this might be better through Cambridge City Council as the hotel had to adhere to licence and planning policies; also the Anti-Social Behaviour Team.


The Safer Communities Section Manager responded that she would talk to the member of the public who had raised the issue of anti-social behaviour on Newmarket Road around the budget hotels for further details outside of the meeting.


Councillor Massey advised that a recent meeting with the PCC, he had informed her that training was being rolled out to control room staff. Callers would be informed of what would happen to their call and how it would be handled. Would also be advised individual feedback could not be provided and asked to keep any photographs or videos on the device which the crime was recorded on.


Councillor Massey stated that Cambridgeshire Police Force was under funded by £27 million compared to other areas of the country. This was due to the Central Government Grant received which was £0.42p per person per day compared to the national average of £0.51p per person per day.  The survey which Sergeant Stevenson had referred to asked members of the public to select one of the following options:

•Option 1: Increase by 33p per month (£4.00 per year) of the council tax precept.

•Option 2: Increase by £2 per month (£24.00 per year). This would provide an additional 50 Police Officers across Cambridgeshire.

•Option 3: Increase by £10 per month (£120 per year). This would provide an additional 350 Police Officers across the County.


In response to Councillor Massey’s comments, Sargeant Stevenson said the following:


  I.  At an additional 50 Police Officers would equate to 12 Police Officers at any one time for Cambridgeshire.

  II.  It would take time to recruit and train all 350 additional Police Officers as referenced in option 3 of the survey.


The Committee:


Resolved unanimously to approve the following as a local issue of focus:


  i.  Dealing of drugs, drug use and the associated anti-social behaviour



East Area Committee Dates 2019/20

To agree the East Area Committee meeting dates for 2019/20 which will be circulated in advance of the meeting.


The following dates were agreed unanimously: