Transport Assessment consultation response

Any new development will have to do a “Transport Assessment” – an analysis of the potential impacts on local traffic of the changes proposed.  Cllr Ian Manning has responded to the current consultation on this – any residents wishing to add something should contact him direct.

The draft guidance is here: .  Cllr Manning’s draft response is here:  20150823_ta_response

MET office weather alert

For the East of England, the warmest of the UK’s summer weather over the next few days or so is expected to be reserved for the Eastern region.

Temperatures in some places on Saturday could reach the low 30s Celsius. However, the flip side to these hot temperatures is that they could be high enough to trigger some thunderstorms.

At this stage, the areas at highest risk of thunderstorms is focussed on Cambridgeshire, Hertfordshire and much of Bedfordshire, along western parts Essex, Suffolk and Norfolk.

These areas are now covered by a Met Office Alert valid from 14:00 to 21:00 on Saturday.

In some locations, thunderstorms could drop more than 30mm of rain in less than a hour with the risk of surface water flooding, hail, very gusty winds and frequent lightning.   The thunderstorm activity will, as is often the case, be localised.

Any thunderstorms should slowly ease and clear during Saturday evening.

Water Lane update – Archaeology report

The re-development of housing at Water Lane was held up recently because of archaeological findings.  Whilst we wait for a full report from officers, residents might find this interim report/pictures interesting:

Between the 22nd July and the 7th August a team from Pre-Construct Archaeology excavated a site prior to development at Water Lane, Chesterton. The excavation revealed evidence for people living on and utilising the site from the Late Saxon period right up to the present day. The archaeological team found the remains of the everyday items people would have used on a daily basis, as well as the waste from the food they ate.

Remains included medieval pits and ditches, large post-medieval quarry pits used for the extraction of gravels and evidence of a building which is shown on the mid 19th century maps.

Stone tools found throughout the site and a small ditch containing animal skulls offered a tantalising glimpse of a much older presence on the site. The prehistoric finds may provide a connection to the nearby river stretching back thousands of years.

Further analysis will take place over the next few months with specialists looking at the various finds retrieved from the site providing us with dates and interpretations which we will combine into a report.

DSCF3816 DSCF3990


Central Library Enterprise centre process: review

Despite the Liberal Democrat request for an independent review being blocked by Labour, the Conservatives and UKIP, an internal review is being conducted into the failed bid to turn the third floor of Cambridge Central Library into an “Enterprise Centre”.

Details can be found here:

Cllr Manning has made a submission as the COuncillor for the area – which can be viewed here:  20150809_clec_review_submission

The history of the process, prior to the collapse of the deal, is here.

Fen Road level crossing safety

Cllr Manning has been meeting with local businesses, residents and Network Rail on site recently to discuss planned safety improvements to the crossing.

The concept is to widen the area enough to allow 2m paths on either side:  possibly by taking some land from the owners of the adjacent properties.  Discussions are now underway – Network Rail are to come up with detailed designs showing how much land will be needed, at which point negotiations with the landowners can start.

A follow up meeting is scheduled for the end of August.

Flood warning this weekend

The Met Office have issued a “yellow” flood warning for this weekend.  This is defined as:

Low likelihood of significant surface water impacts.

Unfortunately there is no more detailed information such as precisely where the rain will fall etc, but residents, especially those near the cam, should ensure they have sandbags and take precautions.

Manning calls for ring-fenced funding to protect vulnerable

Liberal Democrat County Councillor, Ian Manning is pushing for a fund which supports vulnerable people to be maintained and ring-fenced to make sure those who benefit from it are protected.

The national Independent Living Fund was recently closed by the government and its responsibilities transferred from government coffers to the County Council.

Although the fund itself has not accepted new recipients since 2010, 82 residents in Cambridgeshire with complex physical or learning disabilities receive help from it. It supports them to maintain an independent lifestyle, stay healthy and, in some cases work full-time.

Cllr Manning, who represents East Chesterton on Cambridgeshire County Council called on the new chair of the County Council’s Adults Committee at yesterday’s (Tuesday, July 21) meeting of the full council to ensure the fund is ring-fenced within the County Council’s budget so that people continue to get the help they have been receiving.

He said: “To a small number of Cambridgeshire residents, the ILF is a vital resource to allow them to contribute and live their lives to the full.  Many employ staff to support them and are able to work themselves in jobs which are vital to the running of local services.

“We must ring fence this fund in the budget to ensure we protect the most vulnerable in our community.”

[1]  In 2014 the government confirmed their decision to close the Independent Living Fund on 30 June 2015 and transfer responsibility for meeting the eligible care and support needs of current ILF users to local authorities in line with their statutory responsibilities. The ILF has been closed to new applicants since 2010.

[2]  The ILF supports 82 service users in Cambridgeshire in receipt of ILF; 48 service users are people with a Physical Disability, 27 service users are people with a learning disability and 7 are older people who transferred from the physical disability or learning disability teams at 65 years.

[3]  Cllr Manning’s question can be seen here:

Ditton Meadows -> Fen Ditton walking route: right of way?

We’ve had a number of queries about the fact that this route has recently been closed off.  For example:

Having consulted the relevant officers, this appears to just be the owner enforcing the correct legal parh, which is shown on the annotated image below:

The purple line shows the actual right of way path

The purple line shows the actual right of way path

i.e. the often walked path was never a legally allowed right of way.  The only way to change this is to prove it was in unchallenged use for 20 years before 1999, the date the landowner registered it.  If you are able to show this, please contact Cllr Manning.

Update 2015-07-23

To clarify Cllr Manning’s position on this: