Meeting of the Parish Council held in The Grain Store, New Farm, Rogues Lane, Elsworth
7.30pm Wednesday 21st July 2021
Chairman Peter Deer (PD)
Councillors Victoria McNeil (VM) David Pope (DP) Margaret Stevenson (MSt) Rob Askham (RA)
Clerk Mrs E Sim (ES)
In attendance D Cllr Mark Howell
Paul Harding Village Tree Warden
2021/07-1 To receive and approve apologies for absence
James Witherow (Self Isolating)
Alison Brolls (unwell)
D Cllr Nick Wright
Public Participation/Forum – 19:35 – 19:45
Parishioner commented on EW Rail proposals.
2021/07 -2 To receive declarations of interest & requests for dispensations
2.1 To receive declarations of interest from councillors on items on the agenda. None
2.2 For declarations of interest received, Councillors to inform the Chairman if they wish to speak on the matter at the agenda item prior to discussion. None.
2.3 To receive written requests for dispensations for disclosable pecuniary interests (if any). None.
2.4 To grant any requests for dispensation as appropriate. None.
2021/07-3 To sign & approve the Minutes of the Council meetings dated 4h May 2021
It was proposed (VM, seconded DP) and unanimously approved that the Chairman sign the Minutes with no amendments.
3.1 Clerk’s Update
- Remembrance Day cover. In recent years there have been changes to the way remembrance events that require traffic management are performed. Recent changes include the Royal British Legion no longer insuring parades and traffic management duties no longer being undertaken by the police as it is not one of their core responsibilities. These duties have become the responsibility of those organising the events (which in most cases is the Parish or a Civic authority). Although Elsworth does not have a parade that marches down the streets now, the PC needs to be aware of this insurance responsibility and how it might pertain to Elsworth Remembrance Day events.
- Planning Applications determined/closed by Greater Cambridge Planning between 11 July 2021 and 18 July 2021
S/1955/19/CONDB Agricultural Building at Pitt Dene Farm. Submission of details required by condition 10 (contamination) on prior approval S/1955/19. Refuse to Discharge Condition.
21/01904/HFUL 55 Boxworth Road Elsworth CB23 4JQ Erection of a greenhouse to the front. Granted Permission.
- Application for tree works in a conservation area.
21/0863/TTCA34 Brook Street Elsworth CB23 4HX
Proposal: T1 – Yew Tree. To be reduced by 1m at the top and reshaped and rebalanced to suit. This is due to the size becoming less easy to manage for the owner and growing too large for the area it is in.
- The Parish Council’s minutes from 2000 – 2005 have been bound.
2021/07-4 Reports and updates
4.1 County Council
Cllr Smith was not present.
4.2. District Council
D Cllr Nick Wright had sent the following report.
“EWR. I have been supporting the strong opposition from the Parish Councils in Boxworth, Knapwell, Elsworth, Papworth Everard, Eltisley and Croxton to a station north of Cambourne.
We now await the response to the non-statutory consultation.
Flooding It is very good to see a positive response from Elsworth forming a flood response team. The County and District Councils have formulated two training sessions to help response plans for each village be completed.”
D.Cllr Howell reported that
- He had some reservations about the purchase of land at/near Cambourne Business Park by the South Cambridgeshire Business Partnership (a partnership between the DC and a local developer).
- The proposals in EWR’s non-statutory consultation had been considered by the County Council. Particularly in light of the impact of the pandemic, questions had been raised as to the actual need for the rail as the area is well connected with roads, while it appeared that the emphasis in the initiative was really on housing. In that regard, the next stage of the Local Plan would begin later this year.
- The leader of the DC (Cllr Bridget Smith, Gamlingay) is heavily involved with the plans for the OxCam Arc; noted that Gamlingay is also the Division represented by County Councillor Sebastian Kindersley (CamBedRail).
- Proposed electoral boundary changes would see Elsworth, Papworth and Caxton come under a new St Neots parliamentary constituency and in due course the PC would be advised to seek the prospective electoral candidate’s views on the EWR proposals.
4.3. East West Rail.
The Chairman reported that
- The results of the village questionnaire had been published in the Elsworth Times. The overwhelming majority of people were against a station north of the A428 and the consequential development of a new town (developers’ plans envisaged something at least the size of Northstowe).
- The need for the railway was questionable; a convincing business case for it had not been presented and there was little evidence that it would meet local transport needs. It appeared that the proposals were trying to meet too many diverse needs – freight, passenger, fast journey times between Oxford and Cambridge, stimulating housing development, etc. – while failing to take proper account of other matters such as pollution from diesel trains and the impact of covid on patterns of commuting.
- EWR was an integral part of the Government’s plans for the OxCam Arc and, the Local Plan notwithstanding, there was a danger that a Development Corporation would be established to determine additional housing development in this part of South Cambs.
- The Parish Council had put in a response to EWR’s non-statutory consultation, detailing many points of objection. Unfortunately, the consultation process had been flawed with EWR declaring ‘emerging preferences’ before the process got underway and with some parishes not receiving the EWR documentation until well into the 10 week consultation period and, because of covid, not being able to consult properly with their parishioners; regrettably EWR and the Government had refused to recognise this problem.
• Other parishes north of the 428 were also against the proposals and a petition objecting to the proposals had been started in Dry Drayton. While some progress had been made in trying to get parishes to act collectively, it was also recognised that the prime concern of some was about the rail line taking a northern approach into Cambridge (which a station north of the 428 would facilitate) and, if, as seemed likely, EWR’s preferred southern approach were taken, their opposition might dissipate.
• It was clear that Cambourne Town Council’s preference was for a station and for further development of Cambourne to take place to the north of the 428 (even though it might be separated by a four lane trunk road and a railway line), but the basis for this remained unclear.
• Posters objecting to the rail station and a new town north of the 428 had been put up around the area (although Highways had subsequently removed some from street signs) and were also being used in the parishes of Knapwell and Conington.
• Contacts had also been made with Stephen Kelly (Joint Director of Planning & Economic Development, GCSPS), Dr Nik Johnson (the new Mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough), while Anthony Browne MP had met with representatives from Elsworth, Knapwell and Conington and appeared to have modified his support somewhat with regard to and has recently conducted his own survey about EWR. AB had written to Grant Shapps, the Secretary of State for Transport.
• Information regarding EWR has been regularly posted on the Elsworth and District Facebook Forum.
D Cllr Howell left the meeting at 20:26
4.4. Fardell’s Lane Reserve Committee
Paul Harding referred to the reports that he had provided to the Parish Council (appendix 1) and requested a response as to how the PC wished to take forward the management of the reserve, as a matter of urgency. The committee needs to seek younger volunteers and elect a new chairman. The site needs continual maintenance that involves a division of labour that can no longer be sustained by current volunteers and the work that Neil Kenny does on behalf of the Parish Council. The possibility of employing a contractor should be given consideration. It was agreed that the matter should be discussed further outside the meeting with a view to proposals for dealing with the matter being brought to the next meeting.
4.5. Web site.
DP had presented a report and proposals to the PC (appendix 2+3). Councillors agreed unanimously to shut down the old website and link it to the new site. The elsworthvillage.co.uk and elsworthvillage.com domains would be retained. The Parish Council extended a vote of thanks to Rich Milns of Guava Design who has hosted the old site for some considerable time. The new site would be publicised in the Elsworth Times.
5.1. To approve payment of accounts.
Councillors unanimously approved payment (appendix 4). (Prop DP Sec VM)
5.2 Notice of receipts received. Noted (appendix 5)
2021/07-6 Village Matters
6.1. Update on the proposed lease for the sports field, children’s play area and community shop.
The Chairman reported that an informal meeting had been held on May 18th between Mr Edward Davison (the Landowner), the Chairman and Parish Clerk of the Parish Council, the Chairman of the Shop Committee and the Secretary and Treasurer of the Sports Club to discuss a proposal from Mr Davison that there be a single lease to be held by the Parish Council for the whole of the playing field instead of the existing three leases. Mr Davison indicated that he also wished to see greater community use of the pavilion.
Following these discussions, a summary of the existing leases had been received; on the day of the PC meeting a draft of a lease to be held by the Parish Council for the playing fields, the sports pavilion and the play area had been received from Davison and Co. It was noted that the community shop was not included in the draft lease. The PC would take legal advice and consider the various implications and costs that would be involved.
The Clerk reported that the annual Safety Inspection of the play area had been completed and the report received. It noted that the equipment was aging and in need of ongoing maintenance as a result but that the structures were safe. Suggestions from residents about the type of equipment would continue to be sought. MS/RA were taking the project forward with a view to completing the renovation project as soon as possible.
7.1. Planning Applications considered.
- S21/01438/FUL Land Northeast of Castle Acres Boxworth Road Elsworth. Mr S Booth
Erection of an agricultural building for the storage of hay and straw and machinery (instead of building with prior approval under ref 21/00634/PR106A). PC: No recommendation with comments.
- 21/01904/HFUL 55 Boxworth Road CB23 4JQ. Erection of Greenhouse to the front. PC: no recommendation with comments.
- 21/02510/HFUL 35 Boxworth Road CB23 4JQ. Demolition of existing extension and construction of new extension. PC recommendation: Support
- 21/02515/FUL Elm Lodge Meadow Drift CB23 4HS. Demolition of existing bungalow and construction of a 5-bedroom replacement dwelling together with garage, driveway and landscaping. PC recommendation: Support with comments.
- 21/02470/LBC 20 Brook Street CB23 4HX. Partial demolition of ground floor for the removal of existing concrete floor and to replace it with a breathable limecrete floor, removal of the concrete apron and excavate to approx. depth of 150mm and the trench to be lined with butyl membrane, excavate and install 100mm upvc drains. PC recommendation: Support
- 21/02345/HFUL. 45-47 Boxworth Road. Installation of 14 solar panels on southeast roof. PC: No recommendation with comments.
- 21/02318/HFUL. 31 Smith Street. CB23 4HY. Detached Garden Room with sanitary provision. PC recommendation: Support
7.2. To note the following Planning Applications received FIO
- S/3882/19/CONDB AGRESERVES LIMITED Barn 2 Pittdene Farm Rogues Lane Elsworth
- S/1955/19/CONDB S/1955/19/PA Submission of details required by condition 9 (contamination) on prior approval. Agricultural Building at Pitt Dene Farm Elsworth Cambridge CB23 4JA
7.3. Applications for Works to Trees in a conservation area/ protected by a TPO
- 21/0280/TTPO Low Farm Brook Street Elsworth CB23 4HX Granted Permission
- 21/0632/TTCA 5 Brockley Road Elsworth CB23 4JS DC No objection
- 21/0590/TTPO case is linked to 21/0254/TTPO (T2: T1 OAK)
Site address: 55 Boxworth Road Elsworth Cambridge Cambridgeshire
Applicant: Mr Garr. Retrospective application
7.3. Applications determined/closed by SCDC
- S/4521/19/FL Martins Farm 53 Boxworth Road Elsworth Cambridgeshire CB23 4JQ Erection of 9 dwelling houses and associated infrastructure and works including formation of new vehicular access following demolition of existing buildings. Refused Permission
- 21/01656/HFUL 13 Brockley Road Elsworth Cambridge Cambridgeshire CB23 4JS Two storey side extension. Granted Permission
- 21/00569/FUL Church Lane CB23 4UH. PC request for application to be considered by planning committee was considered at the shared Planning Service Delegation meeting on 29.06.2021. It was decided that this application should be a delegated decision.
Dates of future Parish Council meetings in 2021.
September 15th November 17th. Venue to be decided in the light of the situation with regard to covid
There being no further business the chairman declared the meeting closed at 21:20