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Agenda and minutes

Venue: St Augustine's Church, Richmond Road, Cambridge, CB4 3PS

Contact: Claire Tunnicliffe  Committee Manager

No. Item




Apologies were received from Councillor Ratcliffe.


Declarations of Interest

Members of the committee are asked to declare any interests in the items on the agenda. In the case of any doubt, the advice of the Head of Legal should be sought before the meeting.






Councillor Hipkin


Personal: Regularly attends St Augustine’s Church and Hall



Minutes pdf icon PDF 135 KB

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 05 March 2015.




Councillor Reid requested that under 14/83/WCAC: Review of Lighting, for the additional text to be included with her comments (additional text underlined).


Councillor Reid: Would like the entire Coe Fen cycle way to be consideredup to Trumpington Road/Brooklands Avenue up to Fen Causeway.


The minutes of 5 March 2015 were then approved and signed by the Chair.



Matters and Actions arising from the Minutes pdf icon PDF 61 KB


All matters and actions arising from the minutes had been completed.


Police and Crime Commissioner's Outreach Worker

Rebecca Avery, the Police and Crime Commissioners Outreach Worker, will be present to explain her role and will be present to discuss her role and that of Sir Graham Bright in his capacity as the Police and Crime Commissioner, the Police and the Crime plan.    


Questions to Rebecca will be taken in the Open Forum.


The Chair welcomed Rebecca Avery, the Police and Crime Commissioner’s Outreach Worker to the meeting.


Rebecca gave a presentation on her role and that of Sir Graham Bright in his capacity as the Police and Crime Commissioner, the Police and the Crime Plan and the work of the Police and Crime Commissioner’s Office.


The Committee were advised that Rebecca’s role was to listen to the public both individually and collectively and to work in partnership with local agencies to identify and deliver shared solutions to local crime and anti-social behaviour problems in Cambridge, Huntingdon, South and East Cambridgeshire priority areas.


Rebecca explained that the role of the Police and Crime Commissioner, Sir Graham Bright, was to set the budget, the amount of Council tax charged for the Police, the strategy for local Police whilst ensuring that Police were held accountable and to ensure needs of the community were met.


Rebecca reminded those present of the contact point details, where she would be present in order to meet members of the public who could ask questions and give feedback on the local policing and crime in the area.


Questions and Comments from the public


Richard Taylor: Would the Police and Crime Commissioner meet his commitment of attending each Area Committee meeting once a year as he had previously announced?


Rebecca Avery: The Police and Crime Commissioner did attend regular public forums and was visible in his role but Cambridgeshire was a large area to cover.


As the Police and Crime Commissioner’s Outreach Worker, the role warrants members of the public to hold the Police accountable and any issues reported directly with Sir Graham’s Office.


Richard Taylor: In the absence of the Police and Crime Commissioner could you explain what is it like to work in the Police and Crime Commissioner’s Office and do you feel accountable to either members of the public, the Police or the Crime Commissioner?


Rebecca gave an explanation of the structure of the office, detailing the staff who worked there and the roles and responsibilities. Rebecca advised that she enjoyed her role very much, particularly meeting members of the public to investigate their needs and wants, reporting those back to the Police and Crime Commissioner on a daily basis while working alongside the Police and external organisations.



Questions from the Committee


Councillor Hipkin: Is it possible to give three examples of when the Police have been held to account?


Rebecca Avery: Following critical feedback on dealing with domestic violence, work had been carried out to improve how domestic abuse cases were dealt with.


The Police and Crime Commissioner had asked for Cambridgeshire Constabulary to look at how they worked with all external agencies and how those working relationships could be enriched and platforms of communication improved. 


In response to failings of the front line 101 service, the Police and Crime Commissioner agreed with Cambridgeshire Police to invest in new equipment to improve pick up times for the non-emergency number 101 and to recruit additional call handlers.


Councillor Holland: How is your role different to that of the Police and Community Officers who regularly attend West / Central Committee meetings? 


Rebecca Avery: Although the role was separate the function was to work with the Police and report back any issues and to advise the Police of initiatives that had been working well and those that had not received such positive feedback.


Councillor Bick: Could you explain what was missing before your appointment and what the role brings. As Councillors were are concerned with the quality of policing and the safety of residents and discuss these concerns directly with the Police.


Rebecca Avery: The demands on the role of the Outreach Worker were not as time consuming as that of the Police and Crime Commissioner. Therefore the Outreach Worker had the luxury of time to listen to members of the public from all social spectrums and ages.


There were a total of four Police and Crime Commissioners Out Reach Workers to divide this work across the County. Some members of the public did want to speak directly with the Police and the role broke down engagement barriers.



Open Forum

Refer to the ‘Information for the Public’ section for rules on speaking.



Member of the public: Would like to make the Committee aware of the huge appreciation from members of St Augustine’s Church and the Hall Users for the financial support that the Committee has agreed to improve the facilities which are much needed in this part of the City.


Richard Taylor: Last night at the Friends of Midsummer Common Annual General Meeting, Councillor Cearns announced plans to slow cycles on the Common. What was he thinking?


Councillor Cearns: The Corner at North Terrace to Cutter Ferry Bridge is a strategic route used by hundreds of cyclists. By widening and improving the surface of the path this will reduce the risk of accidents and protect the grass. Cycling proficiency needs to be encouraged and cyclists need to slow down at the corner. This will be discussed by further by Officers.


Councillor Holland: Would like to receive an update on the public art on Histon Road at a future meeting.


The Committee Manager noted the comments.



Policing & Safer Neighbourhoods: pdf icon PDF 339 KB


The Committee received a report from Sergeant Misik and Sergeant Wood regarding Policing and Safer neighbourhood trends.


The report outlined actions taken since the West Central Area Committee of the 07 January 2015 on the priorities that had been set. The current emerging issues/neighbourhood trends for each ward were also highlighted (see report for full details).


Comments from members of the public:


Bev Nicolson: Is there a way that the Police can help those people who are spoken to regarding anti-social drinking?


Sergeant Wood: Cambridgeshire Constabulary had well advanced working relationships with support partnership agencies.


John Lawton: With regards to Operation Safe Passage had any enforcement been undertaken with regards to those individuals breaking the 20mph speed limit in the City, particularly Newmarket Road (West) and Maids Causeway?


Also the speed watch surveys referenced on the Police website show figures from 2011.


Sergeant Wood: Very keen to develop Cambridge Speed Watch throughout the City and had canvassed residents to volunteer to carry out the scheme. Operation Safe Passage had allowed the Police to identify areas in the City where enforcement was required and had been undertaken. It was not possible for the Police to carry out speed checks on a daily basis as there were other areas of Policing that needed to be undertaken with a limited amount of resource.


Member of the public: There have been incidents of boats which are moored on the River at Midsummer Common having their ropes cut and those living on the boats assaulted.


Sergeant Wood: Two Officers had been appointed to deal with riverside issues and only today had spoken with outside agencies on this matter. Mobile CCTV can be deployed throughout the City but a business case would have to be put forward to deploy them to the area.


Comments from the Committee


Councillor Reiner: It was good to note that all outside agencies were working together to plan ahead for CaesarianSunday.


Councillor Nethsingha: Noted that Violent Crime in Newnham had increased. What had been the reason for this?


Sergeant Misik: Four of the recorded offences related to a group of students who had a disagreement amongst themselves, a further two with members of the public and the rest domestic incidents.


Councillor Nethsinga: There were two known cases of domestic incidents in the report where children had been present could the Police confirm that the relevant safeguarding had been put into place?


Sergeant Misik: When the Police attend a domestic violence case, they would fill it in the national best practice domestic abuse incident book. The details of the children would be entered into the document and sent to multi agencies to highlight safe guarding controls were required.


Councillor Hipkin: Given that violent crime, criminal damage and other serious crime had increased how can the Police keep on top of the situation in the City Centre? National figures were going down but Cambridge seemed to be going against the trend.


Sergeant Wood: A new scheme had been put into place to tackle alcohol related crime in the City Centre with various multi agencies.


Sergeant Misik: The way that the Crime figures had been recorded had changed. Every incident was now recorded even if was just a casual conversation and no further action taken. This meant more accurate records therefore the figures would have increased.


Councillor Reid: When the way the data is being recorded had changed would it be possible to advise the Committee in the first instance which would help in understanding the figures?


Councillor Bick: It was important to note although the figures for alcohol related crime had increased, this was not reflected in the number of people admitted to Addenbrooke’s Hospital who had been subjected to violent related crimes, as this had been lower.


Councillor Cearns: There was concern about the amount of deliberate littering on New Square. The Resident Association had asked the Police to support the wardens in the past and would like to make the Police aware of this issue once again.


Sergeant Wood: The Police were aware and with the summer months approaching the problems was likely to increase. Regular patrols were in operation the matter would be addressed with individuals if required.


Councillor Hipkin: Could the reported figures show a further break down to the actual crime that had been committed, for example ‘current crime’ figures were a generic title.


Councillor Holland: Residents on Huntingdon Road had expressed concern regarding heavy good vehicles using Huntingdon road from 9.00pm to the early hours of the morning some of which are breaking the speed limit. This disturbs residents’ sleep and impacts on residents cycling to work on shift work. What is the most effective way to report this to ensure that enforcement will take place?


Councillor Tucker: Have been advised by the County Council that a weight restriction had been imposed on Huntingdon Road and would send the details to both Councillor Holland and Sergeant Misik.


Sergeant Misik: Unless a weight limit is imposed permanently no enforcement can take place. Not aware of any incidents on Huntingdon Road. Noise issues should be dealt with by the Environmental Health Department at the City Council. 


Committee Manager Note: Post Meeting - Councillor Tucker advised that the limit had been imposed until 30th April and asked Sergeant Misik to confirm what had resulted from this.


The Committee:


Resolved unanimously to set the following priorities:


  i.  To target alcohol related violent crime and ASB

  ii.  To target ASB caused by punt touts in Market Ward

  iii.  To continue Operation Safe Passage with a strong emphasis on 20mph enforcement and weight enforcement.



Area Committee Grants 2015/16 pdf icon PDF 126 KB


The Committee received a report from the Community Funding and Development Manager, Jackie Hanson, regarding the Area Committee Grants for 2015-16.


Comments from the Committee:


Councillor Reiner: Could the Officer explain why there had been no award to the CAMS Music Trust:


Jackie Hanson: The bursaries that the organisation offers did not meet the City Council funding targets or criteria. Officers propose to meet with representatives from the organisation to discuss how future application could meet the criteria.


Councillor Reiner: Why had the full amount of funding requested not been allocated to the Under-fives Roundabout?


Jackie Hanson: The organisation had high reserves and a contribution had already been made by North Area Committee. The recommended funding by West / Central Area would allow the organisation to meet their activities from all contributions whilst using some of the reserves.


Councillor Cearns: Why has a recommendation of only £140 been made to the Christ’s Pieces Residents Association not the full amount of £220 as requested?


Jackie Hanson: There was a surplus in the organisation’s account The contribution would cover the cost of the hall hire and the speaker fee, a small amount would be required from the organisation for the event to take place which they have adequate funds to cover


Councillor Bick: The Council is making a large capital contribution to St Augustine’s to improve the facilities and would question if the Church should request revenue contributions. With the improvements that had been made (and continue to be made) the building should start to pay for itself.


Councillor Hipkin: It was important to note that the facilities were used by community groups across the City and it was St Augustine’s Community Centre which needed the support that all residents would benefit from.


Jackie Hanson:  St Augustine’s have worked hard to engage the local community and it is important to look at the outcome of the activities, not revenue costs that the funding applied for would bring to local residents. Improvements to the building have not been completed. It is important for St Augustine’s to promote the centre and build on its reputation as a local community centre to generate income to move towards becoming self-funding. 


The Committee:


The Chair recommended that each application would be voted on separately and it was agreed to do so. County Councillors did not vote on these items.


Councillor Cearns proposed that funding for Christ's Pieces Residents’ Common be increased from £140 to £220.


This was carried Nem Com.


Councillor Hipkin proposed that funding for the Under-fives Roundabout be increased from £300 to £500.


This was carried Nem Com.


WC1: Resolved (5 votes to 1) not to award funding to the CAMS Music Trust.


WC2:  Resolved (unanimously) to award Christ's Pieces Residents’ Association funding of £220.


WC3:  Resolved (unanimously) to award Friends of Midsummer   Common   funding of £405.


WC4: Resolved (unanimously) to award St Augustine's Church  with Richmond, Oxford and Windsor Road Residents’  Association funding of £1,500.


WC5: Resolved (7 votes to 0) to award St Augustine's Church   funding of £500.


WC6: Resolved (unanimously) to award St Giles' Church funding    of £367.


WC7: Resolved (unanimously) to award Sustrans funding of    £1000.


WC8: Resolved (7 votes to 0) to award Under-fives Roundabout    funding of £500.



St Augustine's Church Hall - Improvements to Community Facilities - Capital Grant pdf icon PDF 266 KB


The Committee received a report from the Community Funding and Engagement Officer.


The report referred to the agreement made by the West / Central Area Committee on 7 January 2015 to allocate at least £75,000 of the devolved S106 community facilities contributions that were available at that time, as a capital grant towards the side extension to the main hall at St Augustine’s Church, subject to project appraisal and community use grant agreement.


The Committee were advised that a grant of £87,000 was available subject to relevant planning approval and completion of the Council’s Capital Grant Agreement.


The Committee:


Resolved to approve the S106 capital grant of £87,000, for community facilities at St Augustine’s Hall.



Streetlight Replacement Programme in Cambridge Central

To welcome representatives from Balfour Beatty who will give a  presentation on the streetlight replacement programme in Cambridge Central.



 The Chair welcomed Joshua Cooke, Balfour Beatty, who gave a brief overview of the work that was being undertaken on the streetlight replacement programme throughout Cambridgeshire.


Work had begun in 2011 to replace of all the County Council street lighting with work due to finish in June 2016, with a maintenance programme of twenty years.


Comments from members of the public:


Shelia Gunn: The new lighting in Clifton Close is very poor and obscured by trees, the area is very dark and I feel very vulnerable. What can be done?


Councillor Holland: Had spoken to Mrs Gunn regarding this issue. Any lighting located in a centre of a street would be removed. This policy had impacted on Mrs Gunn intensified by the removal of street lights to the rear of the property.  The only way to replace the lights was to request a column from another ward in the City.


Joshua Cooke:  There was a criteria which should be followed with regards to requesting columns from other wards, although acknowledged it could be a difficult process. Recommendations should be brought forward by Councillors for the consideration of the Conservation and Design Team. If a street light was being obscured by a tree this should be reported to the Council to ruminate what can be done with the tree.


Guy Casey: As a resident of Nursery Walk, Balfour Beatty's literature and letters sent out to residents to provide information on the street lighting project stated that "plans detailing the extent of works can be viewed on our website". Under "What are we doing" there is also the statement that "location of columns may be moved to different locations". The question: when, during operations, Balfour Beatty makes a decision to move a column to different location, what is its official policy on notifying residents in advance so residents can view these plans and have the opportunity to raise any queries or concerns?


Joshua Cooke:  Plans could be viewed online and there had been a consultation period when residents could address issues through their local Councillor. In the instance of Nursery Walk, this particular case was under review with Balfour Beatty and the County Council, which had discussed the case with Mr Casey case directly.


The Policy for public notification was to download the plans on the online. There had been time delays to highlight changes to the plans but these were placed in the public domain as soon as possible. Communication with residents had been an initial leaflet drop explaining the proposals across the County. This would then be followed up with letter detailing when work would start in the area.


Comments from the Committee:


Councillor Reiner: Communication for Balfour Beatty had been poor with no literature being received in some cases. For the residents of Castle Ward, letters had been received after the work had started.  It had been very sad to see that the historic lampposts were being removed in Castle Ward.


Joshua Cooke: The original distributor of the literature had been changed as there had been problems.


Councillor Cearns: The County Council had taken too long to negotiate the contract (which was disappointing), during that period the Government had changed the criteria. This had left a less than ideal situation for the City which included losing the heritage street lighting. There were areas of the Country which had negotiated to keep their heritage lighting.


The consultation had been flawed and the plans difficult to understand which could have gone out to public consultation.


Heritage lighting had been taken away without any consultation. There were still no answers if the heritage lighting would be replaced in Market Ward despite discussions starting two years ago.


Concern had been expressed by County Council Officers on the delivery of the project in Cambridge. Assurances were needed that the project in the Centre of Cambridge would not start all in one go. 


An answer was required to the question ‘would the lighting would be replaced with heritage lighting which had been matched funding by Cambridge City Council in the City Centre’?


An apology was required for the poor quality of service. 


Joshua Cooke:  It was not within Balfour Beatty’s gift to decide where heritage lighting would be installed. Funding for heritage lighting was available for the historic quarter of the City. Future meetings would be held to discuss when this work would start.


In terms of other areas where heritage lighting might be installed this would be reviewed on a case by case basis. The contract instructed Balfour Beatty to install the standard solution unless instructed otherwise.


Councillor Hipkin: If this massive project had been undertaken by a different contractor would they been able to deliver the contract. Would they have faced the same issues? The complexity of the project should be taken into account and the reduction in future costs remembered.


What is the average time frame from when the new columns were installed to the redundant columns being removed?


Joshua Cooke: There was a variation in time scales but usually of a few weeks depending on a number of factors.


Councillor Cantrill: When would the residents of Newnham be advised when work would start and could an individual name be given as a contact?


Joshua Cooke: Plans can be viewed on the website or requested through local ward councillors. Contact details could be found on the literature that was sent out. Letters would be sent out to residents two weeks before the work was due to start.


Councillor Tucker:  Time scales were so tight from when plans were received to when work starts that it is very difficult to resolve any issues.


Councillor Holland: A beneficial outcome was required for those in Nursery Ward and Clifton Close. Consultation with Councillors was limited and the time scales for resolution extremely tight. When mistakes had been made by the contractor the limited time scales should be taken into account to try to readdress the issue.


Councillor Reid: Although an e-mail had been sent to Ward Councillors to advise that work was starting in Newham on 18 May but there had been no time table of works. Could this information be sent as soon as possible?


Joshua Cooke: It was difficult to advise when work would be start on specific streets. If there were problems this would have a knock on effect on work starting elsewhere.


The consultation with Councillors was 21 working days, if there were any issue (which was not often the case) and alternatives had been agreed by the Design and Consultation Team, if possible changes would be made.


Environmental Data Reports pdf icon PDF 6 MB

Additional documents:


 The Committee received a report from the Operations Manager (Community Engagement and Enforcement) regarding environmental data which provided an overview of City Council Refuse and Environment and Streets and Open Spaces service activity relating to the geographical area served by the West/Central Area Committee.


The Operations Manager (Community Engagement and Enforcement) asked the Committee to note the amendment sheet that had been circulated before the meeting.


Comments from members of the public.


John Lawton: Concerned about the bins that had been placed on Parker’s Piece without consultation.


There are a number of advertising boards on Midsummer Common, particularly near the Fort of St George which obstructs the turning area there, is there anything that can be done.


Wendy Young: A future meeting of the City Centre Working Group would discuss the issue of the A boards. It was an issue that the City Council were aware of but unfortunately did not have legal powers to remove them.  Alternative ways on how the matters can be addressed were being investigated.


Comments from the Committee:


Councillor Hipkin: Would like to acknowledge the excellent work of the City Rangers, particularly Richard Allen. Pleased to note that the Trumpington Street runnels were a continued priority.


Councillor Cantrill: Would also reiterate the good work that the City Rangers carry out, particularly in Newnham.


When the litter bins were emptied the red refuse sacks are left out for three or four days before they are collected. Is there an opportunity to improve the system to speed up the process which is an issue across the City? 


Councillor Reid: Local residents had expressed concern regarding the bins that have been placed on Newnham Green and asked why they could have not have been placed on the perimeter of the Green.


Wendy Young: The bins on open spaces are part of the replacement programme, led by Alistair Wilson, Green Space Manager. Would be happy to discuss direct with Alistair the strategic approach and a long term plan and bring the details back to Committee.


Are there key individuals that members of the public could contact, such as dog wardens, or officers who deal specifically with littering, or do they have to deal direct with the Customer Service Centre in the first instance?


Wendy Young: Members of the public should contact the Customer Service Centre in the first instance though Manager’s contact details were available within the Environmental Data Report if issues needed to be escalated or members of the public wished to speak to a named officer.


Councillor Cearns: Encouraged that New Square had been proposed as a priority and hope that this will be a joined up approach with the Police to compliment the work of both organisations.


Residents have expressed concerns regarding the bins that have been installed on Parker’s Piece which are on concrete stands and had been done without public consultation.


Councillor Cantrill: Would suggest that the Executive Councillor for Environment and Waste be invited to a future meeting to discuss and answer questions on the replacement bin programme (ACTION)


Councillor Bick:  How do Officers deal with information that HAS been placed on railings around the City to ensure that open spaces are not being littered but keep the atmosphere that they bring. The situation around Jesus Green needs to be improved, what can be done?


Wendy Young: With regards to the railing in the Market Square, no action is taken unless requested to do so by the Church. For Council railings, such as those on Jesus Green, we do ask that people request permission from the City Council. Posters advertising commercial events are not permitted. There is a three stage process if people do not abide by the rules as administrating fines was not an option.


The Committee:


Councillor Smith informed the Committee that Councillor Ratcliffe had proposed an additional priority for regular litter picks and enforcement monitoring in New Square.


This was carried Nem Com.


Resolved (unanimously) to agree the following priorities and the additional priority (number 7):


1.  Enforcement and City Ranger patrols in the City Centre to address issues of illegally deposited trade waste.


Justification: There has been an increase from 3 to 8 cases of trade waste being illegally deposited in the Market Ward and this recommendation is included to continue to balance the high standard of trade waste management already existing in the West/Central area.


2.  To keep the Trumpington Street runnels to a standard of cleanliness and keep them switched on during the summer months.


3.  Early morning dog warden patrols for dog fouling on Grantchester Street and Lammas Land.


4.  Investigate the bin provision at Grantchester Meadows and seek to improve the bins provided for both litter and dog mess in the car park area and approaches to the open space.


5.  Proactive small scale graffiti and flyposting removal by City Rangers across the West/Central area.


6.  Enforcement patrols to address the issue of litter at Garrett Hostel Lane.


7. Regular litter picks and enforcement monitoring in New Square.


West Central Area Committee Dates 2015/16

The Committee is asked to agree the following meeting dates: 

Wednesday 8 July 2015

Wednesday 30 September 2015

Thursday 03 December 2015

Thursday 11 February 2016

Wednesday 20 April 2016

Members are asked to contact the Committee Manager in advance of the meeting with any comments regarding the above dates.



The following dates were agreed:

·  Wednesday 8 July 2015

·  Wednesday 30 September 2015

·  Thursday 03 December 2015

·  Thursday 11 February 2016

·  Wednesday 20 April 2016


Record of Attendance


  i.  26   members of the public

  ii.  10   Councillors

  iii.  6   City Officers

  iv.  1   Balfour Beatty Representative

  v.  2   Representatives from the Police and Crime   Commissioner’s Office

  vi.  3   Members of Cambridgeshire Constabulary