Update2 Jan 2019

Dear All,

January 2019 Update 2

Residents Association Forum – Update on the Cambridge Local Plan

The City Council is organising a Residents’ Association Forum to update residents on the newly adopted Cambridge Local Plan. The Local Plan forms part of the development plan for Cambridge. It sets out the vision, policies and proposals for the future development and land use in Cambridge to 2031. It is the main consideration in the determination of planning applications. The final version of the plan is still being prepared. The link below is to the final version that was considered for adoption.

In the meantime see information on the Council’s Agents Forum:


Note: ‘the commitment to produce a joint Greater Cambridge Local Plan.  The Issues & Options consultation will be in 2019 with proposed submission consultation in autumn 2021 followed by submission for examination in 2022’.


An update on the Local Plan was given to the Cambridge Forum for the Construction Industry on 14 Jan. See link below for informative slides:


Joint Greater Cambridge Local Plan

The Greater Cambridge Partnership (GCP) is the local delivery body for a City Deal with central Government, bringing powers and investment, worth up to £1 billion over 15 years. The four partners are:

Streamlining the planning process

To deliver their ambitious plans for housing, the partner local authorities, Cambridge City Council, South Cambs District Council and Cambs. County Council are integrating planning processes across Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire. There will be a single integrated spatial plan and transport strategy bringing together the separate Local Plans for Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire with the Transport Strategy for Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire.

See link: https://www.greatercambridge.org.uk/housing/

Draft Housing Strategy for the Greater Cambridge Area– consultation deadline 25 Jan

This will guide the future planning of new homes for Greater Cambridge. See link below to the consultation:


More Information about the Housing Strategy. http://scambs.moderngov.co.uk/ieListDocuments.aspx?CId=417&MId=7353&Ver=4

Area Action Plans

These set out detailed planning policies for a specific site or area, and form part of the Local Development Framework (LDF). Reps from North Cambridge Community Groups and FeCRA were invited to participate in a Community Forum for the Cambridge Northern Fringe Area Action Plan. The function of the forums is as a ‘sounding board’. They have no decision-making powers.

Cambridge – Milton Keynes – Oxford Growth Corridor, the ‘Arc’

Like the GCP, the Oxfordshire Growth Board was set up to facilitate economic development, strategic planning and growth and is funded by City Deal money. The joint Greater Cambridge Local Plan relates to plans for the Cambridge-Milton Keynes-Oxford ‘Arc’ and the Last Mile Report for the National Infrastructure Commission. The Report was written by the economic consultancy SQW (founders Segal Quince and Wicksteed) and the spatial design studio Fifth Studio. SQW also prioritised the transport schemes for Cambs County Council/GCP. The consultancy is the lead member on the Treasury’s Gateway Review of City Deal schemes and like Fifth Studio, a member of the business group Cambridge Ahead.

How will the ‘Arc’ plans impact?


How to manage change in a way that does not harm Cambridge?

Before the last Election among the questions you asked us to put to the MP candidates was the issue of sustainable growth and the need to properly assess the cumulative impacts of developments before any decisions are made and to bring the universities, the colleges and councils together with residents in decision making.

You felt that it was important that the Local Plan process and any associated plans for modelling the future of Cambridge were seen to be genuinely open and democratic, and with sufficient weight being given to the environment, the character of Greater Cambridge, and citizens’ rights to happiness and wellbeing.

Plans for the City Centre and Cambridge Market Square

See Cambridge Independent report


‘Friends of Cambridge Market’ welcome comments on their Facebook page, Friends of Cambridge Market. There is also a cobbles petition that they have asked us to share:

New Streets and Open Spaces Team

A new Cambridge City Council team has been established to help improve the city’s streets, parks and open spaces by forging closer links with local residents, businesses and community groups. The team hopes to ensure residents, visitors and businesses play an active role in caring for their local environment, through forming friends’ groups on open spaces, joining the council’s S&OS volunteer scheme and developing community led projects.


Greenways- the Barton and Haslingfield Consultations

Results are now available to view in reports.

Barton: https://www.greatercambridge.org.uk/download/7188/Barton%20Greenway%20consultation%20report.docx?type=inline

Haslingfield: https://www.greatercambridge.org.uk/download/7192/Haslingfield%20Greenway%20consultation%20report.docx?type=inline

The routes have been designed by officers and Fifth Studio who have been working with a Greenways users group: cycling groups, equestrians and ramblers. If you have any questions or would like to discuss either of the consultation results email: contactus@greatercambridge.org.uk

Nature and the Environment

The government (Defra) is currently consulting on its proposals to improve the planning system in England to protect the environment and make biodiversity net gain necessary for developments when granting planning permission. See link to the consultation below:


Biodiversity net gain is an approach which aims to leave the natural environment in a measurably better state than beforehand. In particular, Defra are interested in views on:

  • standardising the approach so that it’s simpler and clearer for developers
  • whether they should add this requirement
  • how they could implement the net gain approach
  • how they should measure and monitor the net gain approach

How might this work?



Natural Cambridgeshire

This is a partnership of leaders from local businesses, authorities, health sector, farming and nature conservation organisations. Part of their vision is a toolkit entitled Developing with Nature. This toolkit is for developers and infrastructure providers working on major new housing developments and transport projects. It provides advice on how to build nature into developments from site selection to delivery and has been designed in collaboration with developers working in the region.


What is the value of a landscape, a hedge, an open space or a view? On a straight point system your local landscape, nature and wildlife may not score highly. As with Cambridge Market and the City Centre, who decides about local priorities as a stakeholder is of major concern to many residents.

A number of you expressed concerns to us that despite all the development pressures a strategic Gogs landscape with wood coppices and open views of the city was sold recently with no publicity. The land has been bought by a Cambridge college.

In the case below (see link ) an ancient city boundary hedge was not thought to be worth keeping. An officer’s report said it had not been well managed.


Can We Save Nature by Selling it? Public Lecture

Professor Rebecca Lave Wed, 23 Jan, 2019, 5.00pm, Large Lecture Theatre, Dept of Geography, Downing Site



Best wishes,


Wendy Blythe

Chair, FeCRA

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