Stapleford Parish Council minutes


Minutes of the Meeting of Stapleford Parish Council 

held at Stapleford Jubilee Pavilion on 13 November 2019 at 7.30 pm

Present:          Councillors H Kettel (Chairman), Cllr A Garden, Cllr M Gatward, Cllr C Greenhalgh, Cllr B Kettel, Cllr Lusby, Cllr Nightingale, Cllr D Pepperell, Cllr G Pett, Cllr Raphael. 

Clerk & RFO: Belinda Irons

Assistant Clerk: Kerry Byne


SCDC: Cllr Fane




106.2019         Apologies: none


107.2019         Chairman’s Comments:

The Chairman reminded those present that all those in public life are expected to behave with order and respect for all those present. Stapleford PC is a friendly and orderly Council which wants to listen to all public concerns, but all comments must go through the Chair.


108.2019        Declaration of Member’s Interest: disclosable pecuniary/ pecuniary/personal:

                        Cllr Pepperell:Financial reimbursement: Disclosable pecuniary interest


109.2019         Minutes of the previous meeting: 11thSeptember 2019

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agree the minutes of the meeting held on 9thOctober 2019.PROPOSED: Cllr H Kettel, seconded Cllr Gatward. AGREED AND RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY.


110.2019         Councillor vacancy: South Cambs District Council has advised that the Parish Council can now co-opt. The vacancy has been advertised in The Messenger and Stapleford Online. It will continue to be advertised until the vacancy is filled. It is open to any person who fulfils the criteria for co-option.


111. 2019        Public discussion and presentation:

                        Comments were received at the relevant points on the agenda


112.2019         Reports from South Cambs District Council and Cambridgeshire County Council:

            Outline planning consent for expansion of genome campus at Hinxton:


In October South Cambs District Council granted outline planning consent toWellcome Trust for a more than doubling in size of the Genome Campus at Hinxton. The plan is to extend the Centre in the field on the other side of the A1301 to the existing buildings. 

The Wellcome Trust wants to build on the scientific foundations of the campus to become the international centre for scientific, business, cultural and educational activities arising from genomes and biodata. It is estimated that around 4,300 new jobs will be created by the expansion of the campus. Cutting-edge genome and biodata research is carried out by around 2,500 people who currently work at the campus. The site currently has around 75,000sqm of employment space, which the Wellcome Trust says is now nearly full.

The outline planning consent gives approval in principle to a further 150,000sqm of space for employment, conferencing and supporting facilities at the Genome Campus. As well as expanding research facilities the project includes 1,500 houses to be available to those working on the site, 30% of which will be affordable.

The proposal also includes a new school, a nursery and community facilities and provides public open spaces and allotments. There will also be shops, food and drink outlets, new cycling and walking paths, road crossing points and alterations to local roads including a new roundabout on the A1301. It is proposed to opened up the campus to provide public access, enabling surrounding communities to use a range of open space and facilities.

Cllr Tumi Hawkins (Lead Cabinet Member for Planning), said: “This ambitious project was not anticipated in our current Local Plan and the Planning Committee therefore had to carefully balance the impacts of this proposal against the contribution that this unique site will make in furthering the scientific, education and economic future of South Cambridgeshire residents and the rest of the country. The Council is committed to supporting the economy of the District and to grow local businesses.”

Highways improvements and mitigating measures to protect the local villages will be considered at the next stage in the planning process.


Planning department – notice of system changeover


The Planning Department at South Cambs is about to change its computer systems. This should make things more efficient in the longer run but there will be an initial close down of the system for about two weeks in February. Users will still be able to access the website, but no new data will be added whilst the changeover takes place. This is likely to delay the processing of new planning applications.


Joint local plan consultation


Cambridge City Council and South Cambridgeshire District Council are working together to prepare a joint Local Plan for the Greater Cambridge area. Both the Councils committed to an early review of those Plans beginning before the end of 2019. An “Issues and Options” consultation due to begin on 25 November, has been postponed to 13thJanuary because of the general election, and will last six weeks. It is expected to take around four years to create the next Local Plan, submitting it to the Secretary of State for independent examination by the end of summer 2022.

The Issues & Options report published in September includes the themes the Local Plan will explore such as climate change, biodiversity, wellbeing and equality to help inform decisions on where new homes will be built, jobs located and the facilities and services that will be needed.


Over 60 new council homes to be developed in Sawston:


63 affordable new homes are to be built in partnership with developers Hill as part of a 158-home development in Sawston. The development will include 1 and 2-bedroom apartments. Almost 70 percent of the new homes (44) will be reserved as Affordable Rent, which is kept at below market rates, with the rest available through a Shared Ownership scheme. 

First priority for 31 properties for local people will be given to those who have a local connection to Babraham and Sawston, with second priority given to those with a local connection to other South Cambridgeshire villages. Subject to planning permission being granted, the first residents are expected to move into the homes by the end of 2020.

This and an additional 80 new council houses in Northstowe will add to South Cambridgeshire District Council’s existing stock of about 5,500 properties. 

Improved Sawston cycleway opened:

The Cambridge Road route has been resurfaced and given new edges to increase the width of the cyclepath. It was funded and delivered by the Greater Cambridge Partnership and was opened by Cllr Ian Bates, vice-chair of the GCP’s executive board, on October 29th.

Cllr Bates said: “This work will make it safer and easier for people to travel between Stapleford and Sawston – particularly for the pupils and parents of children at Sawston Village College who use this path every day.”

The GCP is also working on proposals for the Sawston Greenway - a new walking, cycling and equestrian route, one of 12 Greenways being developed by the GCP to link surrounding villages to the city.

Councillors agree to independent report recommending 2% increase in allowances:

A £98 per year increase in basic member allowance has been agreed by councillors following an independent panel recommendations based on comparisons with the rate paid by other similar councils.

All councillors receive a basic allowance for the time they spend representing communities. This will now be set at £5,010 per year, up from £4,912. The increase in basic member allowance agreed is the same percentage as the staff pay award increase for 2019/20, and councillors agreed to link any future increase to the rate of increase in staff pay.


Please contact District Councillors Nick Sample or Peter Fane if we can help with local council matters.                                                             Mob. 07706 990833                                                                 Mob. 07802 256861 


Questions were posed to Cllr Fane which included lighting the footpath/cycleway at Dernford Way? 

A parishioner passionately explained that the route was extremely dangerous due to the pinch-point at The Cottage. Cllr Fane had commented that this site was a good example of the lack of cohesive thought and action between the County Council and the District Council.

Cllr Pepperell advised that a County Councillor had met the local press at Sawston at the Sawston end of the path, and Stapleford was not included or asked for its comment.

Cllr Fane advised he will progress the complaints expressed.

113.2019         Finance: Clerk & Chairman

                        a)Financial Reports: 

                        The Clerk read the list of payments to be made to the meeting.

Cllr Garden expressed his admiration of the SSYI scheme and objectives, but objected to the payment to SSYI for 3 reasons 

1) SSYI own budget presented showed a fully funded status with a projected surplus of £2406 - therefore they had not demonstrated a need for the monies; 

2) only 28 parishioners were supported by the scheme and his understanding was that drawing against s137 for these monies might be inappropriate, in view of the small numbers of parishioners supported; and 

3) based on a £2500 grant,  proportionately Stapleford was providing a higher grant per head at £89 per child when compared with neighbouring councils paying a grant of £64 per head. 

These reasons had also been circulated to Councillors prior to the meeting

PROPOSAL:  That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees to pay £2,500 (two thousand, five hundred pounds) to Shelford and Stapleford Youth Initiative agreed in the 2019/2020 budget. PROPOSED: Cllr H Kettel as Chairman. AGREED: Cllrs Gatward, B Kettel, Lusby, Nightingale, Pepperell, Pett, RaphaelAGAINST: Cllr Garden.MOTION CARRIED BY MAJORITY.

i) bank reconciliation: The Clerk advised that the spreadsheet was not working and assistance was required which would be achieved as soon as possible. The Clerk also read the balance of accounts to the meeting and advised that whilst there were significant sums of money in the respective accounts, the greater majority was ring-fenced for the S106 initiatives and could not be used for general Parish Council payments.

ii)  budget update 2019: The December meeting will be solely focused on the Budget with any planning requiring immediate response only.

Cox’s Close request for donation for Xmas Dinner: Cllr Pett advised she has recommended the that application be made to the Village Hall Estate Fund.

Warden Scheme review: 

Cllr Fane: 

Cllr Fane advised that South Cambs DC supports Warden Schemes with grants which includes Stapleford. There is a significant health and welfare aspect surrounding loneliness which is alleviated to a degree by visits from the warden. 

South Cambs DC has its own warden scheme associated with its sheltered housing stock and which residents pay for. South Cambs DC does not have a  statutory duty to fund social care. This is the responsibility of Cambridgeshire County Council. Cllrs Pepperell and Greenhalgh commented that the County Councillors have not attended a Stapleford meeting for some 6 months and are clearly out of touch with the Parish Council and the needs of electorate. Cllr Fane commented there is a lamentable shortfall in provision of services for those in need which amounts to a neglect of duty. Withdrawal of services impacts many sectors including the NHS as elderly people cannot leave hospital unless there is a care provision. He further commented that 65% of the Cambridgeshire County Council budget is spent on social care. There is a lack of liaison within Government to manage the issues in social care.

Cllr Greenhalgh commented that Central Government has authorised Local Councils to increase Council Tax by 3% but this is not apparent in service provision supplied by Cambridgeshire County Council or South Cambs DC. A greater level of responsibility is being pushed onto the Parish Council with no financial support from the higher tiers.

Mr John King: Village Warden Scheme:

Mr King commented that the Parish Council had committed to supply £12,000 over 3 years to support this Age UK initiative. 15 residents from 13 households benefit from the scheme. Mr King strongly pressed for continued financial support from the Parish Council, commenting that the Parish Council should serve the community and its social need.

Cllr Garden commented that Section 137 provided for £7.86 in 2018  per elector to be spent for the widest benefit in the Parish. The cost to fund each resident was £267, which may not be deemed to bring the widest benefit. It was not disputed that there was a great need, but the Parish Council was not the Authority with a duty to supply services in the social sector. The Parish Council should challenge the County Council and explore every avenue of grant funding which the scheme could apply to, and assist with such grant funding applications. The question must be asked, would the electorate expect the Parish Council to fund a scheme for a small group of residents at their expense? All financial commitments must be challenged in light of the financial situation.

Cllr B Kettel asked why the Church should pay substantially less than the Parish Council toward the scheme. 

Cllr Raphael commented that the election may result in a change of financial policy and it was premature to take a decision at this stage.

Cllr Pepperell commented that older residents are no longer provided with home visits by Doctors unless they were on the point of death. The support of older residents was in crisis. The Parish Council has been very prudent in the past. It should provide some financial assistance.

The Chairman reiterated that the Parish Council is not allowed to commit to a three year agreement to support the scheme. But must choose whether to renew each year.

Cllr Garden commented that Section 106 monies can only be spent on capital projects. They cannot be spent on any social need or management project.

The Parish Council will work with other Authorities and the Warden Scheme management to establish any funding sources it can apply to, whilst considering the budgetary implications.

In response to John King’s question, the Chairman summarised that commitment to future funding was subject to review and it would be prudent for the Warden Scheme to consider fresh funding initiatives.

b) Signatories: update: Cllr B Kettel will not be a signatory. Councillors will supply the necessary identity documents to the Clerk as a priority.

c) Transfer of funds: update: no transfers can take place until the signatories have been changed.

d) S106 Stapleford Capital Projects Initiative questionnaireupdate 

The leaflets are being printed. Delivery is imminent. 

A parishioner raised the following questions which were answered by Cllr Garden:

The print on the supplied hard copies was very faint and difficult to read.

Use of the same email address for one household prevented both parties completing the document.

Only one box per question can be ticked. More than one answer cannot be made. Cllr Garden commented that there is a box for comments which can be used.

There is no mechanism to review what has been completed.

Cllr Garden commented that any parishioner who needed assistance can contact the Clerk, and he will assist.

Cllr Garden presented survey response rates linked to the staged communication rollout; the response rate from the Stapleford Online website publication had been the highest, whereas response rates after the delivery of the Stapleford Messenger had been disappointing.  No responses had been received from the 18-24 age group, hence a Facebook campaign had been launched to try and attract more responders in the lower age bracket.

e)PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees the payments shown attached and authorises payment.PROPOSED: Cllr B Kettel, seconded Cllr Pett. AGREED AND RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY.

114.2019         Cllr Raphael:

Accounting System:

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees to purchase an accounting package from …. In the sum of £

Amended Proposal:

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees to purchase an accounting package for the financial year 2020/ 2021


Web site:

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees to purchase a web site package from Netwise UK in the sum of £599


Cricket Clubs: fees for 2020 season

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees that Gt Shelford (and Stapleford) Cricket Club hire agreement for 2020 will be £1,100 (One thousand and one hundred pounds)


PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees that Gt Shelford Cricket Club hire agreement for 2020 will be £1,100 (One thousand and one hundred pounds) between the 1stApril and the 31stAugust 2020. PROPOSED: Cllr Raphael, seconded Cllr B Kettel. AGREED AND RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY.

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees that Phoenix Cricket Club hire agreement for 2020 will be £400 (four hundred pounds)PROPOSED: Cllr Raphael, seconded Cllr B Kettel. AGREED AND RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY

Football Club:Fees for 2020 season

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees that Stapleford Football Club hire agreement for 2020 will be £1,000 (One thousand pounds

For the January 2020 meeting.

115.2019         Planning:Cllr B Kettel

                        Planning applications


37 Bar Lane

Proposed garden room: no objection


1 Gog Magog Cottages, Haverhill Road

2 storey side and rear extensions, single storey front porch and one storey annex extension to the north-west side (resubmission of S/4219/18/FL): objection: in Green Belt.


Green Hedge Farmhouse, 36 Bar Lane

Removal of tree. Potential replacement with 2 new trees. Information only.


73 Gog Magog Way

Certificate of Lawful development for a loft conversion with rear dormer and rooflights. Information only

                        Other Planning Matters:

                        Planning application response: it was agreed the Clerk will automatically seek an extension of time to respond if the response date is outside Parish Council meeting dates with an extension to the cover the next meeting date.

                        Greater Cambridge Housing Trajectory and Five Year Housing Land Supply Consultation: update: Cllr Fane advised the District Council has a 5.3 year supply.

                        SCDC: Local Plan consultation: Cllr Fane advised the revised Local Plan must be completed by 2023

                        Newbury Farm: an application for 330 dwellings has been submitted to Cambridge City Council: This application is south of Wort’s Causeway. A further major development has been submitted for north of Wort’s Causeway. There is likely to be infrastructure impact on Stapleford due to road congestion.

GCP: Busway: Consultation and update: Cllr H Kettel

The Chairman thanked Cllr Greenhalgh for his assistance producing the Parish Council’s response letter. The Chairman pointed out that light rail has been proven to be as economical as buses and is a viable option which eliminates the pinch points associated with buses, prevents dissection of farm land and is by far the best option as it creates the least environmental impact. The proposed busway will increase on-street parking as people drive into the villages to catch the bus, but there is no parking provision anywhere. There has been no thought given to the impact on local communities or infrastructure. The environmental impact – landscape, historical importance, human health and infrastructure – have not been considered at all and will be horrific. An increase in funding to existing public transport systems would cost significantly less than the proposed busway.

Cllr Pepperell commented that the Axix Partnership proposal will push the busway closer to the village. There is a public consultation event in two weeks’ time where it is hoped the development aims will become clearer.

116.2019         Cllr B Kettel

Neighbourhood Planupdate: There are insufficient members to progress the plan. Councillors were asked to volunteer and to promote volunteering with their friends and neighbours to ensure the document is completed.


            a) Mapping burial grounds: works completed and report supplied.  The new           burial ground has two options for layout which need to be agreed.

b) Appointment of contractor(s) to install pathway, make safe existing graves, fill all holes and reseed/turf. The Parish Council needs to obtain quotes for the options of installation it requires.

c) Review of burial costs: recommendation that cost is increased: document researched by the Assistant Clerk were circulated in advance of the meeting. Stapleford charges were approximately half when compared to other nearby cemetery charges. A recommendation needs to be agreed and a motion developed for the January PC meeting. A vote of thanks was extended to Kerry Byrne for her hard work on this document. 

d) Review of terms: document researched and produced by Cllrs B Kettel & Pett, the Clerk and Assistant Clerk to be circulated in advance of the January meeting.

117.2019         Cllr H KettelAsset Management        

Pavilion & Recreation Areas

a)   Boundary: liability: Birketts have been instructed to establish boundary ownership. 

b)   PC Insurance: Key holders/ BBQs: 

The Parish Council has been advised by the insurer that anyone using the building must carry out official booking or they will not be insured should an incident occur. 


Cllr Pett has agreed to hold an emergency access key.


BBQs: any function with a BBQ will need to take out separate public liability insurance or hire a professional company which already has public liability insurance. Any BBQ will need to take place at a specific site on the recreation ground and a full risk assessment must be supplied to the Parish Council before and after the event. The hire agreement will be amended to reflect.                              ACTION: ASSIST CLERK

            The Slaughterhouse

Structural survey: two companies have been approached to provide quotes for this important work.                                            ACTION: CLERK

118.2019         Cllr Gatward Grounds Maintenance

Tender and Contracts: recommendation to reappoint current contract and go to tender in autumn 2021 for 2022. 

Tree management/ arborist inspection: The Clerk will contact Acacia and establish what inspections have already been undertaken. ACTION: CLERK

Pavilion maintenance: door seals:  weather bars are to be installed in the outside of the doors.                                                                ACTION: MG

Sports Shed: this building is beyond repair. A recommendation was made that a purpose-built sporting establish should be discussed. This would be eligible for Section 106 funding. Cllr Garden commented that this was the second favoured use of the funds in result received so far from the survey. Improvements to the sustainability (photovoltaic energy system etc) was the first favoured option.

119.2019            Cllr Lusby:

Defibrillator: maintenance/ servicing/ signage/ access

New signage has been installed, new pads have been fitted. The registration of the pavilion defibrillator with the East of England Ambulance Trust is in process with Cllr Pett volunteering to be the main contact. A vote of thanks was extended to Cllr Lusby for his work on this item.  ACTION: ML

Robert Heap plaque: Cllr Lusby will work with Cllr Gatward to install appropriate posts to support a plaque.                    ACTION: ML/ MG

120.2019         Cllr Pett: 

Cllr Pett advised the meeting that the Village Weekend had made a profit of £1,454. The deposit for the marquee was in the cheque run for payment in the sum of £918. This left a profit of £536 to open a bank account which was in process.

PROPOSAL: That the Village Weekend is operated as a separate entity with its own bank account, with support provided by Stapleford Parish Council subject to agreement. PROPOSED: Cllr Pett, seconded Cllr H Kettel. AGREED AND RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY.        ACTION: GP

Stapleford PC will consider the level of funding it will provide at the budget meeting.                    

121.2019         Clerk’s reports & updates

Highways: updates and reports

                        a) street lighting: 

transfer of energy supplier to PC:

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees to appoint Opus Energy to supply electricity to the Stapleford Parish street lights commencing 1stNovember 2019 with invoicing to be paid by direct debit. PROPOSED: Cllr H Kettel, seconded Cllr Greenhalgh. AGREED AND RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY. 

                        b) Speed signage: 

Haverhill Road: Cambridgeshire County Council: Proposed Speed Limit Changes - A1307 Cambridge to Babraham: Stapleford proposal to extend a new 50mph Speed Limit on Haverhill Road, Stapleford from 35m south-west of A1307 Babraham Road south-west for 200m: PC request to extend to 40mph limit submitted. 

Cambridgeshire County Council has dismissed the Parish Council’s application and concerns. The Chairman will continue to press for an appropriate outcome.                                                               ACTION: HK

c) A1301 Stapleford Road to it junction with Dernford Lane: Proposed speed limit changes: extension of the 30mph limit: The Chairman has written to Cambridgeshire County Council. No response has been received to date. There is extreme danger on this road particularly to children. The Chairman will continue to press for an appropriate outcome.                  ACTION: HK

122.2019        Community

                        VE Day 8thMay 2020: 

Cllr Pepperell advised the meeting that peace was declared by Winston Churchill at 3pm on the 8thMay, 1945.

On Friday, 8thMay 2020, there will be a cry for peace at 6.55pm, followed by a ringing for peace at 7.00pm. There will then be parties on the 9thMay, and a service of commemoration on the 10thMay.

Following discussion, Cllrs Pett and Gatward will take a proposal to the Village Weekend Committee to run a street party.            ACTION: GP/ MG

123.2019         Correspondence:

Mr & Mrs Talbot: Villedomer Gardens: tree management: the Clerk is awaiting a quote for each tree affecting the amenity of Mr & Mrs Talbot’s garden. 

E Bond: Mingle Lane: parking on footway/ dog fouling/ cycling on footway: Gt Shelford issue.

Ms Hayes       Request for donation of £100 towards Coxs Close Xmas dinner

124.2019         Date of Next Meeting: Jubilee Pavilion at 7.30pm

                        PC Meetings: 2ndWednesday of each month except August 

                        11thDecember: budget meeting


                        8thJanuary, 12thFebruary      11thMarch       8thApril            13thMay (APCM)

                        10thJune         8thJuly            9thSeptember             14thOctober

                        11thNovember            9thDecember

                        Annual Parish Meeting: 6thMay: 

The Chairman recommended that South Cambs DC planning department be asked to attend to provide a detailed update on major planning applications in the context of Cambridge and Cambridgeshire, and that Cambridgeshire County Council be asked to attend to provide an overview of proposed highway improvements..

                        Meeting closed at 9.40pm      

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