Stapleford Parish Council minutes

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Minutes of the Meeting of Stapleford Parish Council

held at Stapleford Jubilee Pavilion on 12th February 2020 at 7.30 pm

Present: Cllr H Kettel (Chairman), Cllr M Gatward (from 8.39pm), Cllr B Kettel, Cllr Lusby, Cllr P McPhater, Cllr Nightingale, Cllr D Pepperell, Cllr G Pett, Cllr Raphael.

Clerk & RFO: Belinda Irons

South Cambs District Councillor P Fane

Cambridgeshire County Council: Ms C Gregoire & Mr L Miles


18.2020 Apologies Cllr C Greenhalgh

19.2020 Declaration of Member’s Interest: disclosable pecuniary/ pecuniary/personal:


20.2020 Minutes of the previous meeting: 8th January 2020: Astra Zeneca was mis-spelt: amended.

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agree the minutes of the meeting held on 8th January 2020. PROPOSED: Cllr H Kettel, seconded Cllr B Kettel. AGREED AND RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY

21.2020 Councillor vacancies:

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees and adopts the Co-option policy and application form with immediate effect. PROPOSED: Cllr H Kettel, seconded Cllr Pett. AGREED AND RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY.

Co-option: Mr P McPhater

Mr McPhater completed the necessary documentation which was circulated to Councillors by email in advance of the meeting for consideration.

Mr McPhater was asked a series of questions by Councillors present. The Parish Council moved to a proposal to co-opt Mr McPhater immediately.

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees to co-opt Mr Paul McPhater as a Councillor with immediate effect. PROPOSED: Cllr H Kettel, seconded Cllr Raphael. AGREED AND RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY. Cllr McPhater joined the Councillors at the table at 7.45pm

22.2020 Presentation: Cambridgeshire County Council: Clean energy scheme at Babraham Park & Ride

Ms Gregoire and Mr Miles provided hard copies of their presentation, and described the proposal to install a solar array which will cover the whole of the Babraham Park & Ride site, including an additional 160 new parking spaces to be built in advance of construction. A number of investigations are undergoing assessment including environmental impact, glare from the PV panels, and partnership with a major energy supplier which will buy electricity

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but also supply electricity when necessary. Additional energy hubs are planned across the County.

A planning application will be submitted within the next two months. The earliest commencement would be 2021.

Cllr Lusby will liaise to establish whether something similar could be installed in Stapleford to benefit the community. ACTION: ML

23.2020 Public discussion and presentation

Councillor details removed from website: Cllr Raphael advised that new Councillor email addresses will be available once the new website is operational which is likely to be within the month.

Slaughterhouse Use: Stapleford History Society: have all Councillors seen the letter regarding the proposed use of the Slaughterhouse. The Clerk distributed the letter in advance of the meeting by email.

VE day: Stapleford History Society does not have sufficient funds to run an event.

The Tree Group: following its AGM, the group has decided not to continue with the campaign. The granted planning application significantly reduces the business potential, and would require financial pledges to be double the current rate. The Tree community pub is no longer financially viable. There is a conflict between registration of community asset and planning permission, the granting of which has made a community business model untenable.

A vote of thanks was offered to The Tree Group for their dedication and perseverance across the past 6 years.

24. 2020 Reports from Cambridgeshire County Council: no report provided

Report from South Cambs District Council


From 18th February, planning applications will be listed on a new site shares with Cambridge City, using their existing well-tried planning software (Uniform-Idox).

Greater Cambridge Local Plan from Cllr Sample by email

Work is underway on a new joint Local Plan that will affect the future of Greater Cambridge over the next 20 years. 

The Councils are consulting on the Greater Cambridge Local Plan – The First Conversation.  This is intended to start the conversation about the kind of place we want Greater Cambridge to be in the future. It will explore the ‘big themes’ – climate change, biodiversity, social inclusion and great places - that will influence how homes, jobs and infrastructure are planned, and where growth might go. 

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The consultation began in January and will run until 5pm Monday 24 February 2020. There is further information and the opportunity to provide views on any of the topics covered at . People can also post online using #GCLocalPlan.

During the consultation there will be a ‘Big Debate’ on the evening of 18 February, where we are inviting local groups to share their ideas about what should be in the Local Plan, in a fun, provocative and lively public event. If you are interested in being one of the groups to present, please contact Hana Loftus at Also look out for details about how to book your seat in the audience on the night.

There is a video introducing the local plan here: 2.3

(Alternatively, to find the video, search for ‘local plan cambridge’ on youtube.)

Community Chest Grant

The latest round of Community Chest Grants were announced this week, and we were pleased that Cambridge, Past, Present & Future were awarded £996 to buy plants and pond dipping equipment for the Wandlebury Pond project. Each year over 2,000 school children learn about their local environment and heritage through CPPF’s science, history and orienteering programmes. The grant will go towards supporting such programmes by providing equipment such as nets, trays and collecting jars.

Cambridge Police station move consultation

In February, Cambridgeshire Constabulary wi, but is likely to be in Milton.ll be consulting the public on a proposal to “replace our outdated facilities at Parkside with both a new city centre police station and a police hub on the outskirts of Cambridge.” The consultation site claims that “together these [changes] will meet the county’s growth and respond to the challenges of modern-day policing.” The proposed location for the new police hub is not revealed, but is likely to be in Milton.

The consultation will last to Saturday 29th February 2020. Information leaflets have been placed in libraries and police stations across the county. The proposals include keeping a police station (though not custody cells) in the City.

The consultation website can be found at and includes a video, FAQs and more information about why they’re making this proposal.

There is a public drop-in event at Lion Yard shopping centre on 22nd February (10am to 2pm).

Zero Carbon Community Grants

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Over £120,000 was handed out by South Cambs District Council in the end. The grant pot was increased because the council wanted to support all the brilliant ideas that met their criteria. Waterbeach Cycling Campaign, for example, received a grant of £1,200 for cycle stands. Other villages went for electric bikes, tree planting, Eco-Eats festival, repair cafe and other ideas – the full list is available on , including those that did not receive funding this time.

It would be great to see a grant application from Stapleford or the Shelfords next year, and we’d be happy to support any organisation thinking of applying.

South Cambs District Council budget setting

As in recent years, the Council Tax will go up in April by £5 for each Band D property (the amount that the Government has set as a cap for authorities with a low current council tax). There are expected to be difficult decisions to be made next year, when SCDC will get less from the increase in Business Rates, due to the expected ‘Fair Funding Review’ which has been delayed by a few years.

Energy Efficiency Grant

A survey of all houses across the district has been carried out to look at properties which are energy inefficient. Letters have been sent to 250 dwellings across South Cambs with an Energy Performance Certificate rating of G - the lowest band. Last year, the rules on the allocation of this grant were extended so that homes which were poorly insulated or indeed with inefficient heating systems could be upgraded.

There has been an underspend of the budget for disability access at South Cambs over the past few years, meaning that once key repairs and housing adaptations - such as fitting a wet room - had been carried out almost £200,000 has been carried over to date.

The grant is means tested and there is a cap of £10,000 per household so the Council will wait to see what the uptake is and may then extend it to properties rated as an F on an energy performance certificate.

Alongside this, the council is also putting out to tender a service to provide energy efficiency advice. Owner occupiers and tenants in council or privately rented properties will all be able to have a free assessment and receive advice on how to obtain grants or receive discounts towards energy saving improvements. More information to follow once a company has been selected.

New complaints process and Greater Cambridge Shared Planning Service Inbox

From 30th January 2020 all complaints regarding the District Council need to be made through the Open Process portal.

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To access the portal follow this link and select the option ‘Online Complaints Form’:


Individuals who have problems using or signing up to the service for any reason can call our Customer Feedback Team on 03450 450 500 who will assist them. All complaint responses to users who have difficulties accessing online services will continue to be sent via post or phone.

In addition to the online portal GCSPS have set up a Shared Complaints Mailbox (Complaints& Any complaint queries or updates should be placed through the portal as this will be the quickest way to establish contact with their investigator. There may be instances where you want an update on a specific case and you can request this via email to the shared mailbox. Currently, emails are being sent directly to individuals across planning which has delayed our awareness of some complaints. This change addresses this issue and will allow queries to be answered much quicker.

The planning team will be closely monitoring the complaints process over the coming months to ensure that new system is running smoothly. If you experience any problems or delays in the complaint process, please email the shared mailbox above.

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

Cllr Fane report:

Greater Cambridge Local Plan: Key Issues:

Work on the new Local Plan has commenced as this was a requirement set by the Planning Inspector when the current plan was agreed. The new plan will be operational to 2040, and will require an additional 41,000 dwellings to be built along with infrastructure which will include the East/West rail and associated additional 70,000 dwellings, plus business interests.

There is great pressure on the area as delivery of dwellings will be split across South Cambs and Cambridge City, with both areas restricted for growth by the Green Belt. Difficult decisions have to be made.

Connectivity needs to be addressed. Water also needs to be addressed as abstraction caused the River Camb to dry up last summer.

Delegation of powers to officers deciding planning applications has caused difficulties and needs redefining.

SCDC and Parish Council Liaison Meeting: report by Cllr H Kettel:

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Cllrs B & H Kettel attended the meeting and were impressed with Cllr Bridget Smith who has committed to greater parish consultation. Issues discussed included the three free trees, street lighting, street cleaning, Greater Cambridge Local Plan, and grant funding.

25.2020 Cllr Kettel: Finance

a) Signatories: update: Unity Bank is operational for online payments. The building society accounts needs to have one signature on the documentation to enable changes to take place. Cllr H Kettel will progress. ACTION: HK

b) Accounts summary: The bank reconciliation and monthly accounts were provided to Councillors in advance of the meeting by email. The majority of payments will be made using the online banking system, with three cheques written.

The S106 reserve stands at £247,364 and the bank accounts stand at £72,933 at the end of December 2019.

A new spreadsheet which is easier to read will be used in the financial year 2020/21.

c) PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees the payments shown attached in the sum of £6,456.04 and authorises payment. PROPOSED: Cllr H Kettel, seconded Cllr Nightingale. AGREED AND RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY. Cllrs H Kettel and Nightingale will inspect the accounts and authorise payment.

d) PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees to pay for the Clerk to attend Appraisal Training provided by CAPALC on the 6th March 2020 in the sum of £75. PROPOSED: Cllr Nightingale, seconded Cllr Pett. AGREED AND RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY. ACTION: CLERK

26.2020 S106 Stapleford Capital Projects Initiative questionnaire: results, feedback and next steps. Cllr H Kettel offered a vote of thanks to Mr A Garden for the hard work he committed to get the survey operational which will provide the basis for a decision going forward.

10% of the community responded.

Cllr H Kettel has further analysed the comments associated to the numbers, and found the following (percentages are all in support):

Improvements to the Pavilion: 62.5%

All weather sports facility: 74%

Slaughterhouse museum archive/ office/storage: 50%

The Tree: 52% - not now an option.

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Sustainable energy systems: 79%

Moving the play area: 64%

Basil’s Piece: 34%

Sustainability/ energy efficiency measurers can be included in renovation of the pavilion. There is potential to reduce the heating costs by increasing insulation, installation of PV panels to generate electricity, and purchase of ‘green’ electricity. Water harvesting may be an option. Previous suggestions have included installation of a water fountain, bicycle pumping station, and electric car charging point.

The Slaughterhouse: Cllr H Kettel clarified that 33% of respondents sought a museum, 12.5% a Parish Council Office, and 17% wanted the building sold.

Cllr Pepperell commented that ownership of the Slaughterhouse was transferred to the Parish Council from Travis Perkins in 1977 and the transfer states the building should be used for storage/archive. There is land to the rear for a small extension. The garden area was transferred to the Parish Council in 1981 with the condition there is no building allowed.

Councillors present were adamant that use of S106 funds for any scheme must be sustainable from an environmental perspective, but also financially sustainable which requires income to be generated in some form and no scheme can be a burden on the public purse going forward. Item for next agenda.

Cllr Gatward joined the meeting at 8.39pm

27.2020 Planning: Cllr B Kettel




Hill Trees, Babraham Road, Great Shelford

Change of use from public house car park to parking for car sales: Objection: inappropriate development in the rural area beyond the Green Belt; highways impacts

Grove House, Bury Road, Stapleford

Ash - A1 - Reduce lowest very long lateral branch by 50% to suitable pruning point.

Sycamore - S1 - Remove wind damaged branches and trim back lowest branches overhanging river.

Hornbeam - H1 - Remove wind damaged branches and trim back lowest branches overhanging river. No objection

Education Centre, Former Stables, Wandlebury Country Park, Gog Magog Hills, Stapleford,

Installation of wood burning stove in education centre building. Removal of modern timber dividing partition: No objection

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Network Rail public consultation to 2.3.2020: new station at Nine Wells: discussion:

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees to support the Northern site proposal. PROPOSAL: Cllr H Kettel, seconded Cllr B Kettel. AGREED AND RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY. The Clerk will write in response. ACTION: CLERK

Proposal: that Stapleford Parish Council seeks the off-road connections as part of the Huawei planning conditions. PROPOSED: Cllr H Kettel, seconded Cllr Nightingale. AGREED AND RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY. The Clerk will write in response. ACTION: CLERK

28.2020 Cllr B Kettel: Cemetery:

Appointment of contractor(s) to commission burial ground: Progress report from Cllr B KettelL ongoing.

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees and adopts the Cemetery Regulations and Conditions with immediate effect: Councillors to scrutinise. For next agenda.

Headstone safety: Risk assessment result

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees to make safe loose headstones and kerb stones by a) laying flat the headstone in the first instance, b) offering the families of affected graves the option for the Parish Council to re-secure headstones using industry approved products or c) the families of affected graves to instruct their own professional stonemason to secure the headstones and / or kerbstones.

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees to pay the Assistant Clerk Kerry Byrne overtime as necessary to establish ownership of affected graves, and write to families to advise what action the Parish Council intends to take to ensure the safety of all users, to a maximum of 60 hours.


Councillors discussed the significant health and safety issues at the cemetery, and agreed that the risk posed to all users was disproportionate to the timescale required to contact families, for the families to either agree to make headstones safe or dispute the Parish Council assessment, and for compliance with the Parish Council insurance to ensure all site visitors and contactors are safe. The situation was considered to be an emergency which requires immediate resolution.

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees to make safe those headstones assessed as at risk of falling, or which have fallen, using the assistance of a professional builder, with immediate

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effect as an emergency operation. This decision does not set a precedent for future maintenance of headstones and kerb stones. PROPOSED: Cllr Nightingale, seconded Cllr Gatward. AGREED AND RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY. Cllr Gatward will assess the graves and report to the Parish Council. ACTION: MG

29.2020 Cllr H Kettel Asset Management

Pavilion & Recreation Areas:

a) Review of Booking Regulations: Cllr H Kettel commented that gazebos and bouncy castles must have their own insurance to be allowed. PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees the Pavilion booking regulations (as amended) with immediate effect. PROPOSED: Cllr H Kettel, seconded Cllr Raphael. AGREED AND RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY

b) Pavilion maintenance: The doors have been adjusted to prevent water ingress.

c) Survey: the survey has identified a piece of gutter missing, that the entrance level is too great and needs to be remedied with a recommended increase in ground level, internal decoration, and repairs to windows.

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees to redecoration as necessary to the main room and entrance lobby in the sum of £370 (three hundred and seventy pounds). PROPOSED: Cllr H Kettel, seconded Cllr Raphael. AGREED AND RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY.

d) Brick shed & container: update: Cllr Nightingale will speak with the planning department.

Quotes have been received for asbestos removal and structure removal. One asbestos quote is considered reasonable. The quotes are not ‘like for like’ and are difficult to assess. Cllr Gatward will make a recommendation at the next meeting. ACTION: MG

The Slaughterhouse:

Structural survey: The building is generally in good condition. It was noted that the thatch needs attention, external decoration needs to be completed, and the electrical survey needs to be updated. A local person has expressed interest in renting the building but no formal proposal has been received as yet.

30.2020 Cllr Gatward

Grounds Maintenance:

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees to appoint Herts and Cambs Ground Maintenance Ltd to carry out scheduled works quoted to the value of £2120

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The proposal was amended to

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees to appoint Herts and Cambs Ground Maintenance Ltd to carry out works quoted to the value of £3,260 which includes tree work in the Slaughterhouse Gardens, hedge cutting at the recreation ground, pressure washing play equipment and paving, repairs to the tennis court fence, Basil’s Piece works, and ground works on the recreation field. PROPOSED: Cllr B Kettel, seconded Cllr Nightingale. AGREED AND RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY.

Villedomer Gardens: update

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees to provide £200 per annum to the Stapleford Twinning Association for maintenance of the Villedomer Garden border. PROPOSED: Cllr H Kettel, seconded Cllr Pett. AGREED AND RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY.

South Cambs DC: three free trees for Parish Councils: Cllr Lusby will obtain the three trees from an authorised supplier and plant in the agreed locations. ACTION: ML

31.2020 Cllr Raphael: web site update

Cllr Raphael will progress the website and it is anticipated it will be operational by the end of the month, and email addresses for Councillors will be available for the public.

Councillors needed to provide support to update the new website with news and events

32.2020 Cllr Lusby:

CCC: Climate Change and Environment Strategy and Action Plan. Public Consultation: 20th December 2019 to 31st January 2020: PC response: Cllr Lusby reported on his response which was well received.

Litter pick: Cllr Lusby has the sets provided by Cambridge County Council free of charge, and provided them to the Councillors.

Defibrillator to school:

PROPOSAL: That Stapleford Parish Council herewith agrees to gift the defibrillator to Stapleford Primary School with immediate effect PROPOSED: Cllr Lusby, seconded Cllr Gatward. AGREED AND RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY. Cllr Gatward will supply to the school. ACTION: MG

33.2020 Cllr Pett:

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VE Day 8th May 2020: proposed street party update: The Clerk will investigate grant funding. ACTION: CLERK

34.2020 Clerk’s reports & updates

Dog fouling on the recreation field: signage/ dogs on leads? Cllr Raphael commented that leaving dog waste was an offence. Those anti-social owners will not pick up, whether the dog is on a lead or not. It is more important that they are reported for their offences. Responsible dog owners are being penalised for the irresponsible actions of a few.

Operation London Bridge: it was agreed the Clerk will obtain the necessary objects as a priority. ACTION: CLERK

The Clerk will seek permission to use the Cox’s Close Community Room should it be necessary. ACTION: CLERK

35.2020 Correspondence:

Mrs J Bow Stapleford Twinning Association agreement to maintain the Villedomer Garden border only

Stapleford History Society: use of the Slaughterhouse for history archive &


Bill French Use of the slaughterhouse

36.2020 Exclusion of the Press & Public:

There were no members of the public present at this time.

PROPOSAL: that Stapleford Parish Council herewith takes the following item without the press and public in attendance as permitted at Standing Order 3d (Public Bodies (Admission to Meetings) Act 1960) by reason of the confidential nature of the business to be transacted and specifically that the Parish Council has a confidential employment issue to resolve. PROPOSED: Cllr H Kettel, seconded Cllr B Kettel. AGREED AND RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY.

37.2020 Cllr Pett: Employment Issue for resolution

Cllr Pett reported that there was a misunderstanding and confusion over timing of an event which has been resolved, and there are now agreed processes in place to prevent it happening again.

38.2020 Date of Next Meeting: Jubilee Pavilion at 7.30pm

PC Meetings: 2nd Wednesday of each month except August

11th March 8th April 13th May (APCM)

10th June 8th July 9th September 14th October

11th November 9th December

Annual Parish Meeting: 6th May

Meeting closed at 10.12pm