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Agenda and minutes

Venue: Virtual Meeting via Microsoft Teams

Contact: Committee Manager  Email: democratic.services@cambridge.gov.uk

Note: For members of the public who want to watch the meeting online, please follow the link contained under the ‘Media’ tab to watch the meeting on YouTube. Members of the public who would like to actively participate at Area Committees, will be able to do so virtually via Microsoft Teams. Please contact Democratic.Services@cambridge.gov.uk in advance so that you can be sent the meeting details. 


No. Item


Welcome, Introduction and Apologies for Absence


Apologies were received from Councillor Divkovic and Councillors Carling and Thittala-Varkey provided apologies for lateness.


Declarations Of Interest


No interests were declared.


Minutes pdf icon PDF 342 KB



Residents' Forum / Speak

To welcome the following organisations to the Forum:

·      Ruth Yule of the Chesterton Choral Society https://chestertonchoralsociety.org.uk/

·      Caitlin Deschenes, the Young People’s Puppet Theatre www.yppt.org.uk.



The Chair invited three residents within the north area of Cambridge to attend North Area Committee to talk about their interests / groups.


Ruth Yule spoke about the Chesterton Choral Society: 

i.               Chesterton Choral Society – We are a friendly amateur choir based in Chesterton, Cambridge, UK. Our members come from many areas though we are proud of our local Chesterton roots.

ii.             Rehearsals took place from 7.30pm – 9pm on Mondays during term time at Chesterton Methodist Church in Green End Road.

iii.            Everyone was welcome and there were no auditions.

iv.           Public concerts took place at the end of each term with the next one taking place Wednesday 22 March at 7.30pm at St Andrews Church.

v.             Noted that there were other choirs within North Area; 

a.    Sing! Choirs Cambridge [Choirs - Sing! Choirs (singchoirs.com) meet in Mayfield Primary.

b.    Rock Choir [Rock Choir | The UK's original, award-winning, local, contemporary choir!] meet in The Church of the Good Shepherd, Mansel Way.

c.    Orlando Singers, which is an auditioned chamber choir of singers drawn from around Cambridgeshire; they rehearse in St Andrew’s Church Hall, Chesterton [About us - Orlando SingersOrlando Singers | a chamber choir for Cambridge].


Councillor Gawthrope Wood asked whether consideration had been given to doing a joint concert with other choirs in the north of Cambridge. Asked whether Chesterton Choral Society might consider performing at Arbury Carnival.


Action: To check consent and share contact details with Cllr Gawthrope Wood.


Councillor Swift also noted that there was the Cambridge Philharmonic Choir.


Caitlin Duschenes spoke about the Young People’s Puppet Theatre (YPPT):

i.               http://www.yppt.org.uk/

ii.             YPPT worked with children in schools (usually years 5/6) to design and make their own marionette and then put on a show. The children were involved in every part of the process of putting on a show for e.g. making the marionette, creating costumes, creating the sets, practicing voices, acting, characterisation and producing the show, technical, lighting and sounds effects.

iii.            The aim was to build children’s confidence, resilience, and other skills through the arts.

iv.           Found it difficult during the covid pandemic but they had been able to ‘bubble’ with schools and continue to run their projects. Had noted that children needed extra support since the covid pandemic.

v.             Had worked with a mental health practitioner and trained them so that they could use the skills provided by YPPT in their own work to help others.


Vicki Kenney spoke about being a jazz musician and a music therapist:

i.                     www.vickikennymusic.com

ii.             Was a jazz pianist and music director of a group called the Alley Cats. They had worked with the children’s hospice in Milton.

iii.            They were a therapeutic teacher and worked with children who had autism.

iv.           Wanted to focus on trying to encourage girls to be interested in jazz music.


Area Committee Grants 2023-24 pdf icon PDF 295 KB

Additional documents:


The Committee received a report from the Community Funding & Voluntary Sector Manager regarding Community Grants.


Councillors were reminded that the Committee could not make decisions whilst the Area Committees were taking place virtually, but any discussion / debate would be taken into consideration by Officers when the delegated decisions were made.


In response to Members’ questions officers said the following:

i.               It was noted that a total of £76,254 of application requests were made for North Area Committee out of a fund of £23,751. Difficult decisions had to be made regarding the grant funding requests as unfortunately there was not enough funding available to fund all qualifying projects.

ii.             Histon Road Residents Association had withdrawn their grant application after the North Area Committee agenda had been published.

iii.            Reasons why applications were not proposed to be awarded area committee grant funding included:

a.    Significant funding had already been provided by the council through the main community grants fund.

b.    Poor or insufficient detail regarding benefit to residents in the north area of Cambridge; where appropriate officers would liaise with applicants where their application would be better made to the main community grants fund.

c.    Inclusion of inappropriate costs (e.g. equipment only requests).

d.    Financial need of applicant group not demonstrated or over reliance on Community Grants funding.

iv.           Recommended that organisations read through the guidance and talked with Grant Officers before applying.

v.             Officers would review the amount of detail included within the reports and would be happy to discuss any further detailed queries outside of the meeting.


Environmental Report - NAC pdf icon PDF 4 MB


The Committee received a report from the Community Engagement and Enforcement Manager.


The report outlined an overview of the council’s Streets and Open Spaces, Environmental Health and Shared Waste service activity in the Area Committee area over the past six months.


A member of the public asked for an update when a bin would be replaced where the Chisholm Trail met the towpath. This issue had been raised in September 2022 and no update provided.


Action: For Senior Operations Manager to provide an update on the replacement of the bin to Cllr Bird and member of the public where the Chisholm Trail meets the towpath.


In response to Members’ questions the Community Engagement and Enforcement Manager said the following:

      i.         Community Clear Up days would begin in April, one was scheduled for Kings Hedges on 8 April 2023.

    ii.         Noted that while a mobile CCTV camera was located in Cockerill Road fly tipping had stopped.

   iii.         Enforcement action for fly tipping would be carried out in accordance with the Council’s Enforcement Policy. Action included the provision of information / training and more formal action. Each case was considered on its own merits and enforcement action taken would be based on each individual set of circumstances. 

  iv.         Acknowledged that the north of Cambridge was experiencing a significant increase in fly tipping compared to the rest of the city and noted that a greater team of officers were covering two wards in the north. 

    v.         Would arrange for officers to carry out a sweep for needles in the Bramblefields area.

  vi.         Would ask the Shared Waste Service to provide information why food waste had not been collected in East Chesterton.

 vii.         Advised that the Operations Team dealt with oil / paint spillages in roads and any spillages on roads should be reported to them.


Action: Would ask the Shared Waste Service to provide a response why food waste had not been collected in East Chesterton.



Open Forum


Councillor Scutt responded to a member of the public who had emailed the Democratic Services Team during the meeting expressing disappointment that area committee meetings were being run online and advised that for the time being Full Council had approved a decision to run area committees virtually.


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


Question 1

Campkin Resident Association asked when repairs would be undertaken at the mini roundabout sections, in Campkin Road, Northfield Ave. It was noted with the occasional exception [week ending 18th February 2023] no remedial work had been undertaken since the road structures were put in as part of the traffic calming in 1992. Asked when action on this would be seen.


Action Point: Councillor Meschini to follow up.


Post meeting note – update from Councillor Meschini: The County Council advised that there wasn’t a regular cycle of line and mini roundabout repainting. There was a programme of refreshing in spring and summer and the areas identified (Campkin Road and Northfield Avenue) would be added to one of the programmes for 2023/24.


Advised that the best way for residents to notify the County Council of any defects or concerns is via the Report It tool here: https://highwaysreporting.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/.


Question 2

Asked if there was any point in the proposed chicane in Fen Road which a few neighbouring properties, but nobody else effected, had been consulted about. Felt in current conditions it was a bad idea and a waste of money. The very small minority of people who still occasionally speed dangerously with the 20mph speed limit would regard the chicane as a challenge rather than a restraint. There was already plenty of restraint because of the chicane near the level crossing and the cars parked much of the way along the road. These already acted as multiple chicanes. Insofar as there was a removable cause of speeding and dangerous driving it was the frustration and lateness sometimes caused by delays at the level crossing. This was usually down to inattention or understaffing from the signallers who controlled it and this could still be improved. To add another chicane would merely add to this frustration and the likelihood of people speeding or wildly overtaking once they were through it. The frustration would continue and be a danger way beyond Fen Road and Water Street, as those in Green End Road had experienced. Another chicane would increase the likelihood of total gridlock which occasionally already happened. It was in the interests of all the public, both residents and those driving through, for the traffic to be able to proceed smoothly and without unnecessary stops, which caused unnecessary fumes and anger.  The chicane also caused problems in restricting cyclists movements and for nearby residents with extra banging from trucks and buses going over the wider and more effective speed humps proposed.


Councillor Bird acknowledged that Fen Road had a long history of issues. Advised that the first chicane was put in when the Chisholm Trail was opened.  Noted that some residents liked this, and others didn’t. Another chicane was proposed to be put in near Water Street to try and slow down traffic. A consultation was undertaken with residents who lived near to where the chicane was proposed.  Was aware that residents who lived further along Fen Road were not happy with the second chicane proposed.


A member of the public advised that they were not consulted about the second chicane proposals because they did not live close enough to the area where the second chicane was proposed.  They did not believe the first chicane was slowing down traffic and felt it was a source of danger and would cut off an entire estate and others beyond the railway line as there was only one way in and out for some residents. The second chicane proposal would affect them as there was no other way to get into Chesterton. Requested that a wider area of residents should be consulted rather than just those immediately affected. Noted a shared use sign had been put on the housing side of the Chisholm Trail. Felt a similar sign to that used in Water Lane / Water Street should have been used. 


Question 3

Councillor Carling raised some concerns regarding people taking drugs in the Pointers Lodge area and would raise this with the Police outside of the meeting.




Question 4

The authors of the  A Community Remembers Histon Road”  book had decided to create a Fund from income from the book sales.  Grants were to be awarded to community projects, specifically in the area the book covered.


HRARA were looking for projects which required funding in the region of £300-£500. Applicants would be asked to provide a breakdown of how the money would be spent and provide a report when the project was completed. Anyone interested should contact contact@histonroadmemories.uk.

Grants had been awarded to Richmond Road Residents' Association (RRRA) who worked with the Arbury Community Centre in providing breakfasts to those in need and to the North Cambridge Community Partnership (NCCP) for their Reading Club, each £500.

Richmond Road Residents Association   

Proposed to use the funding to provide further funds to Akeman Street Community Centre 'Warm Spaces’ to help fund breakfasts and meals for those in need until at least June.  The additional funds would be provided on behalf of both Histon Road and Richmond Road Residents Associations.


NCCP  Reading Club

The main purpose of this grant was to allow the NCCP to continue running the Reading Club project from March 2023. The NCCP project had been running for longer than two years and had proven successful and was needed by the local community beneficiaries. The reason for applying for the funding was because funding provided by the local council had been substantially cut this year and this had created problems being able to meet and deliver the project objectives and to reach the intended target audience and beneficiaries.


Question 5

Asked if any representation was being made to the people working in Milton Road about the fact that with the closure of Union Lane and Kendal Road, and the extra restriction on Green End Road, traffic was effectively imprisoned in Chesterton, especially when there were road works affecting the Chesterton High Street/Elizabeth Way roundabout. Recent rush hours had been so congested to be dangerous.


Action: Councillor Meschini undertook to follow up with officers when Union Lane might be opened.


Post meeting update: Greater Cambridge Officers acknowledged that the closure at Union Lane had been longer than originally planned. Advised that there had been some difficulties constructing the new layout with unforeseen obstructions and utilities not being where was expected which had slowed down the progress. Hoped the junction would be opened within the next 3-4 weeks.



Greater Cambridge Partnership (GCP) Waterbeach to Cambridge project

The GCP are currently consulting on the preferred route options for the Waterbeach to Cambridge busway, including active travel provision, and a new Park & Ride at Waterbeach. For further information please follow the link below.


GCP Waterbeach to Cambridge 2023 | Consult Cambridgeshire (engagementhq.com)


The Committee received a report from the Greater Cambridge Partnership (GCP) regarding the Waterbeach to Cambridge New Public Transport and Active Travel links options consultation.


The consultation was running from 30 January – 24 March 2023. Further information could be found via the meeting recording North Area Committee - Monday, 27th February, 2023 6.30 pm - YouTube or from the GCP consultation webpage GCP Waterbeach to Cambridge 2023 | Consult Cambridgeshire (engagementhq.com)


The Greater Cambridge Partnership Project Officer said the following in response to Members’ questions:

      i.         Confirmed with optical guidance buses that a driver would still be in charge of the bus. A separate team within the GCP was looking at optical guidance buses and that rigorous safety testing / criteria would need to be satisfied before such a service could be implemented.

    ii.         It was estimated that the population of the new town at Waterbeach would be greater than 20,000 people (which was larger than the population of Ely).

   iii.         The issue with the Milton park and ride site was that it did not attract users from the A10. Several different options for a new park and ride site at Waterbeach were being considered as part of the current consultation. The reason why the proposed sites were further down the A10 was to try and encourage road users to use the park and ride and prevent congestion building up closer to Cambridge.  Initial modelling suggested that the Milton park and ride would still be viable if a new park and ride site at Waterbeach was developed.

  iv.         The concept of ‘park and cycle’ at Milton park and ride had already been raised both in current consultation responses and also by the consultants working on the consultation.



Committee Action Sheet pdf icon PDF 152 KB

Additional documents:


The committee action sheet was noted. Councillors would send any updates to the Committee Manager outside of the meeting. An updated version of the Committee Action Sheet could be viewed via: Agenda for North Area Committee on Monday, 27th February, 2023, 6.30 pm - Cambridge Council.