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Agenda and minutes

Venue: North Cambridge Academy, Arbury Road

Contact: Emily Watts  Committee Manager

Items
No. Item

17/30/NAC

Welcome, Introduction and Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies were received from Councillors Smart and Gawthrope

17/31/NAC

Declarations of Interest

Minutes:

No declarations of interest were made.

17/32/NAC

Minutes pdf icon PDF 319 KB

Minutes:

Councillor Scutt referred to section 17/26/NAC of the minutes of the meeting held on 14 September and requested a change of wording, additional wording in bold, removed wording struck through-

 

Councillor Scutt stated that the money was available for the purposes of the consultation. She apologised that proper notification about the informal consultation with community groups had not been properly publicised. on behalf of the County Council because invitations to the informal consultation had not been sent out. Highlighted that Hurst Park Estate was within Chesterton Division, Councillor Scutt represented Arbury Division so her apology on behalf of the County Council was expressed in relation to Arbury Division and those residents for whom she had responsibility. Councillor Manning represented Chesterton and was the County Councillor for that Division when the informal consultation was being arranged and was held and hence he was responsible to/for Hurst Park Avenue residents.

 

Councillor Sargeant referred to section 17/29/NAC; he had contacted the Planning Enforcement Team who had confirmed that they would take action with regard to the advertising banners on the exterior of the Student Castle. 

 

After agreeing the changes the minutes of the meeting held on 14 September were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chair.

 

 

17/33/NAC

Matters and Actions arising from the Minutes pdf icon PDF 157 KB

Minutes:

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

 

https://democracy.cambridge.gov.uk/documents/b11545/Committee%20Action%20Sheet%2014th-Dec-2017%2018.30%20North%20Area%20Committee.pdf?T=9

17/34/NAC

Open Forum

Minutes:

Members of the public asked a number of questions, as set out below.

 

1.  Cab Davidson raised the following issues:

  i.  At present there was only one grit bin in Kings Hedges, could more be provided?

 

Councillor Manning confirmed that he could make enquiries with County Council officers to see if any more bins could be provided.

 

Councillor Scutt stated that grit bins could be bought from the County Council. In other areas of the city community groups had raised the £100 fee for the grit bin and once they were in place the County would fill them for free.

 

Councillor Meschini said that as the county councillor for Kings Hedges she could make enquiries, she asked Cab to email her directly.

 

Action Point: CouncillorMeschini to make enquirieswith County Council Officers to see if any more grit bins could be provided in Kings Hedges.

 

  ii.  Cab Davidson stated that there was a lack of perceived accountability and a democratic deficit within the Greater Cambridge Partnership (GCP). Asked if the committee agreed that a collective responseto challenge this perception was required?

 

Councillor Price stated that he did not feel that a collective committee response to the GCP was necessary and highlighted the positive work carried out by GCP Officers.

 

Councillors Scutt and Todd-Jones agreed with Council Price; highlighting the receptiveness and responsiveness of GCP Officers in relation to the Milton Road projects, highlighting the benefit of having dedicated Officers to specific projects and an updated website.

 

Councillor Manning felt that the GCP had a democratic deficit because of its governance structure; he stated that having three people making the decisions did not empower residents.

 

2.  Richard Taylor raised the following issues:

  i.  Queried why meetings which discussed highways and remodelling Milton Road were being held in private?

 

Councillor Scutt confirmed that they were not private; at the last Local Liaison Forum people were asked to put their names forward for invitation to attend the highways and remodelling meetings. Residents Associations were supposed to inform others of the invite.

 

Councillor Manning stated that the public should not need to attend one meeting in order to be invited to another. All meetings should be publicly advertised and available.

 

3.  Owen Dunn raised the following issue:

  i.  Asked if there could be a dedicated cycle lane on the narrow section of road between Frank’s Lane and Nuffield Road rather than just an advisory lane?

 

Councillor Bird confirmed that his question would be answered during the Cycling Projects Update later in the agenda.

 

4.  Lillian Rundblad raised the following issue:

  i.  Referred to the Borrowdale pedestrian crossing and highlighted that lots of complaints had been received about the difficulty of using the crossing for users with mobility problems. She reported that a Local Highways Improvement (LHI) bid to fund changes to the kerbs and crossing had recently been accepted but it would not include signage or lighting. Stated her discontent and highlighted that without appropriate lighting the crossing would be very dangerous.

 

Councillor Todd-Jones confirmed that the original LHI bid was to fund changes to the physical infrastructure, stated that he would make enquiries with Officers about the signage and report back to Committee.

 

Action Point: Councillor Todd-Jones tomake enquiries with County Council Officers about lighting and signage at the Borrowdale pedestrian crossing.

 

5.  Cheney Payne raised the following issue:

  i.  Referred to the new Hawkins Road housing development and asked when it would be completed?

 

Councillor Price confirmed that delays had been caused by problems with contractors but the work should be complete by early 2018.

 

6.  County Councillor Anna Bradnam raised the following issue:

  i.  Raised concern over the amount of time the level crossing barrier on Fen Road was down. The delay caused frustration and was becoming increasingly dangerous. Asked whether City and County Councillors could work together to request a review of the timetabling?

 

Councillor Bird confirmed that plans were in place to ask Network Rail to attend the next North Area Committee meeting in March 2018 to discuss issues related to the Fen Road level crossing barrier.

 

Councillor Manning highlighted that he had planned to set up a Station User Group to try and work with Network Rail as developments within the area progressed. The group would be open and public so anybody could contribute.

 

Councillor Sarris affirmed the need for answers from Network Rail; the problem was likely to worsen as the station took on more rail services in the future.

 

7.  A member of the public raised the following issues in relation to the Fen Road rail crossing:

  i.  Asked if it was possible to create a pedestrian and cycle crossing to bypass the rail line?

  ii.  Raised concern over plans to move the main barrier further away from the crossing, the work was due to be completed by April 2018 but was likely to cause even further delays and impede the chance of a pedestrian crossing. Encouraged Councillors to contact National Rail as soon as possible. 

  iii.  Asked if anything had been done by the Highways Authority to acquire the land needed to the south east of the crossing in order to extend the pathway?

  iv.  Asked if both a rubbish bin and gritting bin could be installed near the crossing?

 

Councillor Manning responded:

  i.  Suggested that one option to accommodate cyclists was to join the route to the Chisholm Trail, however Officers had previously expressed concern over the practicalities of this.

  ii.  Confirmed that both he and County Councilor Bradnam planned to meet the owner on the land to the south east of the crossing to discuss the option of extending the pathway.

  iii.  Stated that he was happy to take the issue to the Highways and Local Improvement Committee for further discussion.

  iv.  Confirmed that North Area Committee could look at allocating bins to the crossing.

 

Action Point: Councillor Manning to make enquiries about putting dustbins near the Fen Road rail crossing.

17/35/NAC

Record of Officer Delegated Decisions in consultation with the Chair, Vice Chair and Spokesperson for North Area Committee

17/35/NACa

Milton Road Library Community Facilities pdf icon PDF 27 KB

Minutes:

The Committee noted the decision.

17/36/NAC

Policing and Safer Neighbourhoods pdf icon PDF 325 KB

Lynda Kilkelly, Safer Communities Manager,

Cambridge City Council

Minutes:

The Committee received a report from the safer Neighbourhoods Inspector, Police Sergeant and Safer Communities Manager regarding policing and safer neighbourhoods trends.

 

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 priorities and engagement activity noted in the report were:

  i.  Child sexual exploitation

  ii.  Anti-social behaviour around Fen Road

  iii.  Road safety with specific reference to Arbury Road, Gilbert Road, Fen Road and Kings Hedges Road.

 

Members of the public asked a number of questions, as set out below.

 

1.  Richard Taylor raised concern over the perceived lawlessness on Fen Road.

 

Sargent Misik responded that he did not agree that the behaviour on Fen Road could be described as lawless.

 

2.  Asked the police for clarification of what happened on Fen Road on Friday 8 December 2017. Residents had reported that residential windows were broken with a ball bearing gun and the perpetrators drove past a police car taunting and filming the police.

 

SargeantMisik confirmed that a call had been received at 20:20pm reporting an incident involving ball bearings. Officers had arrived on scene shortly after and names were being drawn together. Footage had also been captured and was being reviewed.

 

3.  Asked why the activity on Fen Road was classed as anti-social behavior (ASB). Stated that shooting through living room windows and driving along the pavement at speed should be considered as life threatening criminal activity.

 

Sargent Misik stated that the behaviour was considered by definition to be criminal damage not ASB. Confirmed that the police were in the process of investigating the ball bearing shooting incident and were also working with British Transport Police to address the reported driving incident.

 

4.  Asked why a CCTV camera was installed in Water Street and was then taken down shortly after.

 

The Safer Communities Section Manager confirmed that the camera had been vandalised so needed to be removed. They were in the process of finding a new much higher location for the camera to be reinstalled.

 

4.  There had been reports of moving vehicles swerving toward pedestrians on Fen Road. Footage of the incident had been capture of a mobile device and was offered to the police as evidence but they refused to accept it based on policy restrictions. Stated that installing CCTV in the area would help identify vehicles involved.

 

Sargent Misik suggested that the police may be prepared to review their current policy on accepting third party footage.

 

5.  Public opinion supported the idea of serious criminality on Fen Road being a police priority.

 

6.  Referred to the current road safety priority, many residents felt disheartened that even after reporting incidents in Kings Hedges very little appeared to be done by the police.

 

Sargent Misik stated that this sort of road safety issue was problematic for police to tackle because of the resources required. He suggested that it may be easier to prosecute through civil enforcement methods, such as a Public Spaces Protection Order. He would make enquiries to see if this was achievable.

 

The Committee discussed the following policing issues:

  i.  Warned that an email had been circulated which was designed to scare the public unnecessarily. He advised any recipients to ignore it.

  ii.  A recent news report made allegations of crimes going unreported; Members stated that this information was false. They confirmed that every crime mentioned in the report had been recorded by police.

  iii.  Made reference to the increase in violent crime incident figures recorded on page 37 of the agenda. Asked what the extents of the injuries were and asked for their thoughts on why there had been an increase.

  iv.  Made reference to page 31 of the agenda, child sexual exploitation. Stated that this was a city wide issue and welcomed the fact it was being taken seriously especially since the County Council announced the closure of some children’s services. Asked for assurances that it will remain a priority for police.

  v.  Upon reporting an incident of scooters racing in residential areas at 11pm one evening, the receiving police officer asked the Councillor for the registration plate of the perpetrating vehicle, stating without it the incident could not be recorded. The information requested was completely unachievable to obtain.

 

In response to Members questions Sargent Misik responded:

 

  i.  Attempts had been made to secure additional police resource for the road safety issues in Kings Hedges but this had been unsuccessful. If the problem persisted the wider policing unit which covered the whole county could intervene, but in order for them to know the severity of the problem the public needed to keep reporting the problem.

  ii.  Confirmed that changes in violent crime figures could be attributed to a seasonal peaks and troughs. The term ‘violent crime’ covered a broad range of offences from verbal to physical actions.

  iii.  Highlighted that advisors receiving an incident report via telephone would have asked for a number plate because they read from a script to ensure consistency. Comments about changing this approach would be taken on board.

  iv.  Assured that safeguarding vulnerable people was a core function of the police so child sexual exploitation would remain a priority.

 

There were 6 recommendations of which the Committee was asked to nominate their top 3 for focus over the coming months.

1. Fen Road ASB: There continues to be issues around this area and as such it continues to be a recommendation. The work around this area would be targeted patrolling in the area and continued work with partners.

2. Brownsfield Community Centre ASB: There is currently a developing trend in the area of ASB. This work would be around target patrolling and work with partners around any identified offenders.

3. Dwelling Burglary: The figures show an increase in the number of offences over the previous six months. This work will be in support of the Burglary team and would be around targeted patrolling of locations across the area which are subject to dwelling burglary.

4. County Line drug dealing. There continues to be areas on the North of the City where people are being put at risk but this kind of activity. The work around this would be around highlighting vulnerable people and dealing with offenders.

5. Road Safety. This is a core role for the team and this would be an increase number of patrols around this issue.

6. Safeguarding Young People. This is a key function of the team and this adaption of the CSE priority previously set. The work around this Priority would be working in partnership with other agencies to identify and deal with identified risks. This would cover CSE and other types of risk.

 

Councillor Sarris requested a change to the title wording of priority 1, additional wording in bold, removed wording struck through-

 

·  Fen Road ASB Criminality in and around East Chesterton:

Councillor Bird proposed to remove Priority 2, because the ASB issues had already been resolved.

 

The changes were agreed with no one opposed.

 

Councillor Todd-Jones formally proposed to add the following priority:

 

7.  To continue to recognise the need for Akeman Street and Darwin Drive area to receive special police focus.

 

The additional priority was agreed nem con.

 

The Committee voted on each priority individually:

 

1. Criminality in and around East Chesterton (13 votes to 0)

3. Dwelling Burglary: (0 votes)

4. County Line drug dealing (12 votes to 1)

5. Road Safety (1 vote to 12)

6. Safeguarding Young People (4 votes to 9)

7. To continue to recognise the need for Akeman Street and Darwin Drive area to receive special police focus (11 votes to 2)

 

The following priorities were agreed:

 

1. Criminality in and around East Chesterton.

4. County line drug dealing.

7. To continue to recognise the need for Akeman Street and Darwin Drive area to receive special police focus.

17/37/NAC

Re-Ordering on the Agenda

Minutes:

Under paragraph 4.2.1 of the Council Procedure Rules, the Chair used her discretion to alter the order of the agenda items. Item 10, update on Anti-Social Behaviour was heard directly after item 7, Policing and Safer Neighbourhoods.

17/38/NAC

Update on Anti-Social Behaviour

Sarah Steggles- Anti Social Behaviour Officer

Minutes:

The Committee received a verbal update from the Anti-Social Behaviour Officer regarding the anti-social behaviour (ASB) in north area.

 

The report outlined:

  i.  The Safer Communities Team had been working closely with the Police on issues discussed in 17/36/NAC associated with Fen Road.

  ii.  Stated that they were in the process of finding a new site for the CCTV camera which had been vandalised in its previous location.

  iii.  The ASB issues experienced at Brownfield Community Centre had been resolved by turning off the Wi-Fi and removing the buggy shelter.

  iv.  Work was ongoing in the Akemen Street area, offering reassurances to residents and asking whether the situation had improved. CCTV had been implemented and Officers were hopeful that this could stay permanently. Reported that no recent complaints had been received.

 

The Committee made no comments in response to the report.

 

 

The Chair called a comfort break at 20:30

 

 

 

The Committee resumed at 20:40

 

17/39/NAC

Environment Improvement Programme Proposals pdf icon PDF 255 KB

John Richards, Project Manager

Cambridge City Council

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Councillor Scutt left the meeting.

 

The Committee received a report from the Project Manager regarding the Environmental Improvement Programme (EIP) for north area. The report outlined progress of existing schemes and new suggested schemes for 2017/18.

 

Members of the public made the following comments in response to the report:

 

1.  Matthew Danish referred to scheme N7 listed in Appendix A to the report, and objected to any obstruction being erected on the existing Leys Road/ Highworth Avenue cycle route. The result would impede access of legitimate users of the route such as tricycles and trailers. Asked if CCTV could be implemented rather than using obstructive planters.

 

Councillors Sargeant and Manning confirmed that motor cycles’ using this route were a major issue which needed addressing so a physical barrier such as a planter was a good idea but they also appreciated the need to accommodate larger cycles.

 

2.  Richard Taylor referred to existing scheme 7 listed in Appendix C and asked if the trees could be replaced because the ones previously installed had failed. He also suggested that the EIP application process should be open all year round with a deadline each year to enable assessment and recommendations to Area Committees, rather than it just being open for a small window of time.

 

The Project Manager confirmed that the Council would endeavour to replace the trees. He further stated that the EIP application process was dependent on financial and staffing capacity and that a limited application window ensured bids were targeted towards current needs. There had been no shortage of bids received for north area in the recent round, but he would ensure the suggestion was considered further as part of the ongoing review work.

 

The Committee made the following comments in response to the report:

  i.  Welcomed the reintroduction of improvement to Craister Court.

  ii.  Referred to the new application scheme N9 and confirmed that this should be a jointly funded approach with the management company of Vie.

  iii.  Highlighted that it would be useful for residents to know when the EIP application window was open so that they could report ideas to local councilors.

  iv.  Made reference to new application scheme N21 and stated that this idea may be difficult to implement because of obstacles underground leaving very little room for a tree to develop.

 

In response to Members’ questions the Project Manager answered:

  i.  Referred to new application scheme N19 and confirmed that a previous commitment to make improvements had been made at Craister Court but this appeared to have been deferred. It was never formally abandoned by Committee and renewed public appetite suggested there may still be scope to achieve improvements via EIP.

  ii.  He encouraged Councillors to build a priority list of ideas received from the public that they supported to work from when the EIP window opened.

  iii.  Made reference to scheme N21 and confirmed that it was possible for trees to grow in difficult environments if the right methods were used, and that he was reasonably confident of success.

 

Councillor Sarris Left the meeting.

 

Following discussion, Members resolved (unanimously) to-

 

1. Note progress, and delays where experienced, in delivering the identified programme of projects since 2011-12

2. Support the allocation of £6,616 in 2017-18 towards the provision of 40 summer hanging baskets in Chesterton High Street and Campkin Road

3. Not to continue to pursue through EIP those projects (as listed in paragraphs 5.4 and Appendix C) that are within scope of Greater Cambridge Partnership work

4. Continue with a £5,000 EIP funded project to improve the environment within Craister Court

5. Support the allocation of remaining EIP funding available in 2017-18 to the 21 new project applications as detailed in Appendix A.

6. Approve those projects selected for implementation, subject to them being viable, obtaining consents as necessary, positive consultation and final approval by Capital Programme Board and Ward Councillors where required.

17/40/NAC

Cycling Projects Update

Mike Davies, Cambridgeshire County Council

Minutes:

The Committee received a presentation from the Cycling Projects Team Leader.

 

The presentation updated four cycle projects within the city:

1.  Abbey/Chesterton Bridge:

  i.  Planning consent had been obtained so the development could move to the next stage. The site posed a number of difficulties because of its locality and the natural obstacles.

  ii.  Plans were in place to improve and widen the approach to the timber jetty underneath the bridge.

  iii.  A Local Liaison Forum open to the public was due to take place on 10 Jan at Barnwell Baptist Church.

2.  Arbury Road:

  i.  The first phase was completed in summer 2016.

  ii.  The next phase was due to start imminently, this included implementing raised red cycle lanes, making the road narrower and removing the mini roundabout.

  iii.  Phase 3 would involve a consultation to gather public opinion on proposed changes to the resident parking.

3.  Green End Road:

  i.  First phase was almost complete.

  ii.  The next phase focused on Milton Road to Nuffield Road, due to the size of the road along this stretch it was possible to retain parking with footways, segregated cycle lanes and provide grass verge and trees.

  iii.  Lots of consultation had taken place for the Nuffield Road area; public consensus suggested that they wanted to retain much of the existing infrastructure so few changes would be made there. 

4.  Waterbeach Greenway:

  i.  The Greenway would link the city with the large new housing development proposed in Waterbeach to provide a more sustainable route into the city.

  ii.  The prospective route was likely to run alongside the railway line.

  iii.  Further consultation was due to be undertaken in 2018.

 

A Member of the public made the following comment in response to the presentation:

 

1.  Expressed disappointment at the Nuffield Road cycle provision proposals, stating that segregated off road cycle lanes would be safer.

 

The Cycling Projects Team Leader affirmed that lots of consultation had been undertaken in the area and the public consensus was to retain the wall and trees. Unfortunately it wasn’t possible to address all of the local concerns but he welcomed input from the public.

 

The Committee made the following comments in response to the presentation:

  i.  Queried the mix of opinion on retaining the wall on Nuffield Road. Enquiries had been made with Greater Cambridge Partnership to view their consultation but the response received confirmed that Councillor’s Bird and Price had stopped the consultation.

  ii.  Affirmed that consultation had been undertaken with residents in the Nuffield Road area because Councillors Bird and Price had taken part in the door to door contact. The consensus was that residents used the green space as a garden and liked the privacy that the wall gave.

  iii.  Expressed concern at the suggestion that schools were encouraging vehicle drop offs by asking for a layby to be installed.

17/41/NAC

Cambridge North Fringe East

Stephen Kelly- Director of Planning and Economic Development

 

Minutes:

The Committee received a presentation from the Director of Planning and Economic Development on the Cambridge North Fringe East (CNFE) development.

 

The presentation outlined:

  i.  The site provided a substantial opportunity to deliver growth.

  ii.  In 2014 work began on the CNFE Area Action Plan this proposed moving the Water Treatment Works to free up space in the area.

  iii.  Grants were now available from the Housing Infrastructure Fund. The City Council has submitted a joint bid with South Cambridgeshire District Council through the Combined Authority for £193 million to fund moving the sewage works. A response to the bid should be received early in 2018.

  iv.  If funding was successfully secured the planning process would undergo lots of consultation and public engagement.

 

A member of the public made the following comment in response to the presentation:

 

1.  Claire King asked what the aspiration and viability for affordable housing on the site was. Queried at what stage they would be undertaking a viability assessment.

 

The Director of Planning and Economic Development stated that historically Cambridge had achieved higher level of affordable housing outcomes than many other boroughs. They were committed to review the Supplementary Planning Document and S106 to create a more transparent process in the coming year.

 

The Committee made the following comments in response to the presentation:

  i.  Asked if they were working alongside the Greater Cambridge Partnership (GCP) in order to tie in with their plans for Milton Road.

  ii.  Affirmed that if anything could be done to provide an alternative road route out of the detached area of Fen Road as part of the CNFE development, Members would be fully supportive

 

In response to Members questions the Director of Planning and Economic Development responded:

 

  i.  Confirmed that his team were working closely with GCP, all the future developments were related to growth in respect of the Local Plan. The plans and transport infrastructure for CNFE would be mindful of the strategy being undertaken more widely by GCP.