Annual General Meeting 2005

Minutes of the Cottenham Village Design Group Meeting held on 8 March 2005 at CVC

1. South Cambridgeshire District Council Presentation -
Guest Speakers - Jane Green, Rob Mungoven.

1.1 Jane Green:
A presentation by South Cambs. District Council comparing the existing Cambourne development with the proposed development at Northstowe.
The talk focused in part on the benefits that a new town would bring. A focus of development is to bring more jobs and more services out of the city centre to peripheral settlements and so reduce city centre congestion. The higher population density of Northstowe for the same land area as Cambourne was addressed.

1.2 Rob Mungoven:
A presentation on the wildlife and ecology of the Northstowe site. The talk focused on measures being taken to preserve the existing wildlife. Also to encourage and introduce other native ecology into the site during and after development.
The South Cambs. District Council biodiversity strategy for planning guidelines and principles was raised. A supplementary reference for Council and CVDG is due in Spring 2005.

1.3 Questions Raised:
i/ Mike Smith - Boundaries of plots and sites.

ii/ John Williams - Endemic Oaks - The importance of preserving local genetic material where possible. RM agreed in principle with UK provenance of planted material in developments. Proactively contacting local nurseries was raised, but is not likely to be a cost effective strategy due to scale.

iii/ Q - Longstanton has local elms, the preservation of the Northstowe site in terms of existing plant species was raised. RM - Although the Longstanton area has a proliferation of Elms, these are not recommended for planting in the new development due to failure (Dutch Elm Disease). Q - The possibility of using disease resistant strains was raised for consideration.

iv/ Rebecca Tindall - Noted that the new development services are focused on primary and secondary schools and not representative of the needs of the population in general. The provision of services for the elderly and disabled was raised as they do not appear to be represented with services in new developments. RM - advised that the proportions of different groups are represented differently in new developments. People choosing to live in new developments tend to be younger with young families. RM - The Northstowe development will have a provision of social services, for instance affordable housing and health. To adhere to 2006 Planning permissions housing needs to be adaptable to a lifeways standard. The affordable housing built at Northstowe will adheres to the standards, but SCDC is unable to comment on private housing provided by private developers.

v/ Q - Northstowe is intended to be a higher density to Cambourne, with less open space.
SCDC - Agreed that Northstowe is intended to have a higher density than Cambourne.

2. AGM:

2.1. Election of the committee.

i/ Officer Positions:

Chair: Robin Heydon -
Nominated by Alex Thoukydides, seconded by Mike Smith.

Membership & Treasurer:Steve Poole
Nominated by Mike Smith, seconded by Rebecca Tindall

Information Officer: Alex Thoukydides
Nominated by Mike Smith, Seconded by Rebecca Tindall,
Secretary: Kate Heydon
Nominated by Rebecca Tindall, Seconded by Alex Thoukydides

Parish Council Nominee: Alan Leeks
(A new nominee of the Parish Council. Although this was not part of the election this is recorded in the minutes for completeness).

ii/ Non Officer Positions:

Jenny Blood-Smythe
Nominated by Robin Heydon, seconded by Alex Thoukydides

Tim Wotherspoon
Nominated by Steve Poole, seconded by Mike Smith

Rex Collinson
Nominated by Robin Heydon, seconded by Alex Thoukydides

Rob Van Der Linden,
Nominated by Steve Poole, seconded by Alex Thoukydides

2.2. Updates: Treasurers Report - Steve Poole.

Expenditure for 2004 has exceeded income. This is mainly the result of holding both the AGM and the Flooding talk. Holding two events per year has raised the profile of the CVDG, but more fund raising is necessary. The need to increase fund raising was discussed.

2.3. Fund Raising:

Rebecca Tindall - Fen Edge Family Festival 24th, 25th and 26th June 2005. There will be fund raising for the CVDG during the event. There will be tea, cakes and a jumble sale held on the lawn of The Limes (333 - opposite the village green). Publicise information asap - the Fen Edge News/Village Newsletter (end of April 2005).

2.4. Planning Application Report.

i/ Mike Smith:
Discussed evaluating the impact of the CVDG comments on the final decision of planning permissions. An undergraduate has approached the CVDG to study the impact of village design statements. A question was raised as to whether village design statements have a positive impact on materials and re-use of the land.
It is statistically difficult to correlate between the recommendation of the CVDG and the final outcome in terms of the impact of CVDG statements may have had on influencing the final result. This is because the comments of the CVDG may reflect those of the SCDC. It is more efficient and more reliable to evaluate the proportion of positive and negative appraisals by the CVDG and the correlation with the final planning decision.

ii/ Robin Heydon
Commented on the co-operation and useful input of David Greck (Conservation Officer), particularly in relation to CVDG planning issues. Mike Smith raised the absence of useful input regarding the 'shed/barn' conversion.

iii/ Action:
Steve Poole to correlate between CVDG recommendations and SCDC planning permission outcomes to determine where the decision reflected the CVDG comments.

2.5 The Revision of the Design Statement:

i/ Robin Heydon advised that CVDG is still waiting for the local planning framework document expected from South Cambs. last year. David Greck last advised that the document will be due in late spring/early summer 2005. The main impact of the deign statement revision will be on extensions.

ii/ Action: CVDG aim to deliver the updated design statement by the end of 2005, providing the SCDC produces the relevant local planning framework document by early Summer 2005. A draft update for CVDG is planned for the end of August 2005.

2.6 Distribution of the Design Statement:

i/ There are currently insufficient funds available to print a large scale paper copy of the CVDG revised statement. The revised statement will be made available electronically through the CVDG web site, however this may exclude the elderly, or people without easy access to the internet.

ii/ The original design statement was provided to all Cottenham residents for review prior to the final publication. Public consultation is considered important to the CVDG.

iii/ The possibility of receiving a grant to publish the revised statement was raised. It is felt that it is important to include the community in design decisions made to ensure that the changes represent the views of the Cottenham residents. Also, distributing paper copies will raise the profile of the CVDG.

iv/ Action: No decision was arrived at due to the unknown nature of the funds available.

2.7 - Any Other Business:
The Fun Run event on Saturday 7th May 2005 will provide an opportunity for fund raising. The nature of fund raising was briefly discussed.

2.8 - The Next Meeting:
Monday 18th April 2005 at Rebecca Tindall & Nick Stephenson's house, 8pm.

End Of Meeting.

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We aim to ensure that development and change in Cottenham is based on a considered understanding of the Village's past and present, and that it will contribute positively to the future of the Village, protecting and enhancing its special nature

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