2022 Meeting dates

Please find below a list of our meeting dates for the first 6 months of the year. In accordance with the Public Bodies (Admissions to Meetings) Act 1960, the public are welcome to attend our meetings.

NB: due to it being an election year the May full council meeting must be held within 14 days of the election hence the later date of the meeting.

JAN
11th – Full
18th – CALF
20th – Planning
25th Highways
27th – FLAC

FEB
1stFull
17th – Planning
22nd – FLAC

MARCH

1st – Full
8th CALF
17th – Planning
22nd – Highways
29th – FLAC

APRIL
5th – Full

12th – CALF
21st – Planning
25th Annual Parish Meeting (this is not a Parish Council meeting)
26th – FLAC

MAY
10th – Full (Annual Meeting of the Parish Council)
19th – Planning
24th – FLAC

JUNE
7th – Full
14th – Highways

21st – CALF
23rd – Planning
28th – FLAC

Flooding advice

The Parish Council has an emergency flood plan in place, with 2 Flood Officers – Cllrs Jonathan Graves and Christine Ward.  We have a very limited amount of flood equipment which we are able to issue to residents in an emergency situation. Please contact 07503 328401 or clerk@cottenhampc.org.uk.

Sandbags and other help

It is recommended that property owners or businesses at risk of flooding make their own arrangements of sandbags in advance of flooding. Residents can purchase empty sandbags and sand from builders merchants or DIY stores.  You may also find further help from SCDC. Depending upon the scale of the flooding around the district, their resources may be seriously stretched and supplies of sand bags may be limited and slow delivery timescales could be experienced. In an emergency situation, this service can be accessed from 8am to 5.30pm (Monday to Friday) by calling 03450 450 063.

You should take action to protect your own property as much as possible. This is especially important if you live in an area that has had issues around flooding in the past. Sand bags and other flood protection equipment can be obtained from a variety of companies within the U.K. Here are lists of some companies you may wish to contact for further information:

Flood Sense – info@floodsense.co.uk or 08081 972 753

Multi-flood Solutions – info@multifloodsolutions.co.uk or 01584 819233

There is no guarantee that any flood protection system will work and we do not endorse a particular product or supplier.

Further guidance is available on this free to download leaflet, which provides advice on a whole range of issues related to flooding and property protection: Flood Sense Flood Protection Guide

Road closures and diversions, and highways drainage system

The local authority highways organises road closures and diversion due to flooding. They also place flood warning signs on roads and clear blockages on highways drainage systems. You can contact 0345 045 5212 or the Police out of hours.

You can also report overflowing drains or gullies within the highway network. Any such flooding should be reported using the highways fault reporting service.

Report flooding from water pipes or sewers

Anglian Water Services covers most of the county for sewage and water supply. Cambridge Water supplies only water to Cambridge and some of the surrounding areas.

Report flooding in a garden/property:

Information taken from Cambridgeshire County Council website:

Use the link below to report issues such as external flooding to gardens or paths or to report that you have already experienced flooding within the living space of your home (not outbuildings). It may be possible to investigate the cause of flooding or offer advice.

This form is to report flooding within Cambridgeshire only and can be used to report flooding issues after an incident has occurred, it is not for use in an emergency situation.

https://cambridgeshire-self.achieveservice.com/service/Flood_reporting

National Flood Forum

The National Flood Forum is a registered charity that provides support and advice to communities and individuals that have been flooded or are at risk of flooding

Friends Against Scams

We’re delighted to sign up to the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Against Scams Partnership (CAPASP).  CAPASP is urging people to become a Friend Against Scams. It’s simple to do, will take just 20 minutes of your time and will equip you with the knowledge and awareness to protect yourself and others from the dangers of scams and fraud. Visit www.friendsagainstscams.org.uk/elearning/Cambridgeshire to become a Friend today!

Scams are targeted at people in many ways – by post, on the telephone, online and on the doorstep – all
with the intent to trick someone out of their personal details or money. More than three million people fall
victim to scams in the UK every year and whilst the financial losses are enormous (£5 – 10 billion in the UK
every year), the harm to a person’s health and wellbeing is often even more devastating. CAPASP want to
help you spot scams and stop scams by joining the country’s growing legion of Friends Against Scams.

There are also other ways you can become involved in protecting people from scams:

Become a CAPASP Supporter: Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Against Scams Partnership
(CAPASP) is a newly-formed partnership of over 20 organisations sharing a common interest in
preventing people from falling victim to scams and supporting those who suffer the misfortune to do
so. Become a CAPASP supporter by passing on communications from the partnership to others in
your local community. NB: Cottenham Parish Council has signed up as a supporter.
Become a Scam Marshal: If you have been targeted by a scam and want to fight back and take a
stand against scams you could become a Scam Marshal by reporting the scam for investigation,
sharing your own experiences and helping others to report and recognise scams.
Become a Scam Champion: If you want to do even more to protect yourself and others, you could
become a ScamChampion and recruit new Friends Against Scams by delivering face to face sessions
to community groups etc. Resources are provided to do this, all that’s required is a bit of time and
passion about spreading scam-aware messages.

To find out more, please contact Charlotte Homent Community Protection Manager at Cambridgeshire
County Council charlotte.homent@cambridgeshire.gov.uk 01954 284635.

More information is also available on the CAPASP website and there will be regular articles about different types of scams and how to keep yourself protected. Visit: www.cambridgeshireinsight.org.uk/capasp

Cottenham Community Directory

We’re delighted to announce that the first formal edition of the Cottenham Community Directory is now available to download.  The Parish Council, in conjunction with South Cambridgeshire District Council, has created this directory of clubs, associations, facilities and events to provide residents with everything you need to know to be able to fully enjoy being part of the Cottenham community. We hope you find the information useful and informative.

Cottenham Community Directory – May 2019

NB: the directory will be updated 1-2 times per year and when future housing developments come online.

Reporting crime

There are various methods available to contact the police whether to report crime or concerns:

Online:

Web chat is 24 hour service and can be accessed by clicking the green icon displayed at the bottom right of the screen throughout our website (www.cambs.police.uk/home).  It also works on mobile devices and tablets.

You can also report crimes (assault, anti-social behaviour, damage, fraud, harassment or theft) online and receive a response within 24 hours. Report a concern (criminal activity, anti-social or suspicious activity) in your community. Report vehicle related activity such as vehicle collision or dangerous driving. www.cambs.police.uk/report/Report

By phone:

Non-emergency:
Call 101 for non-emergency enquiries. Using this number, you can report an incident or get help.

Textphone:

If you’re deaf or hard of hearing, use our textphone service on 18001 101 or chat to us live through our web chat service.

Emergency:
Call 999 if;

  • a serious offence is in progress or has just been committed
  • someone is in immediate danger or harm
  • property is in danger of being damaged
  • a serious disruption to the public is likely.

If you are hard of hearing you can use our textphone service 18000 or chat to us live using our web chat.

Emergency & cannot speak:
If you are in a hostile environment or situation and you can’t talk, you can call us on 999 and press 55 to tell us that you are unable to speak but that you need our help.

Remain anonymous:
You can report a crime or suspicious behaviour to Crimestoppers online, or by calling them on 0800 555 111

Cottenham Community Flood Plan

Cottenham Parish Council’s Drainage Working Party has prepared a Community Flood Plan which identifies areas of the parish most at risk and the resources available to help in the event of a flood. Jonathan Graves has volunteered to be Flood Coordinator and has immense experience of flood planning and monitoring through his involvement with the Old West Internal Drainage Board. In recognition of improving the parish’s preparedness, the Environment Agency has given the Parish Council’s flood team a selection of flood prevention equipment including a submersible pump, torches and a limited supply of FloodSax and Hydrosnakes (modern equivalents of sand bags).

It is still worth remembering that the risk of flooding from surface water run-off is higher than from river flooding. However, because it is harder to forecast than river flooding and can affect almost any part of the village, it is still recommended that all households:
• register for flood and severe weather alerts
• have a household flood plan
• be aware of any vulnerable neighbours and check whether they need help
• buy their own supply of flood protection such as FloodSax and Hydrosnakes

If you are interested in becoming a flood volunteer, for example to help in the event of an evacuation or to check whether vulnerable residents need help, please contact the Parish Clerk on 07503328401 or email clerk@cottenhampc.org.uk

Cottenham Parish Flood Plan 2018

Flood warning information service

Location of dog bins

As a useful guide for dog owners we’ve produced a map detailing the locations of all the dog bins in the village.  They are widely placed around the village so there’s no excuse for fouling on the streets.  Please report any issues (broken/missing/missing collections) to SCDC.

Map of dog bins

 

 

How being in a conservation area can affect you

Although conservation areas mean some extra planning controls and considerations, these exist to protect the historic and architectural elements which make the place special. They are most likely to affect owners who want to work on the outside of their building or any trees on their property.

Find out whether your property is within the Cottenham Conservation Area.

Your House

Being in a conservation area might mean that your house is affected by special controls (called ‘Article 4 Directions’), which restrict work you can normally do without planning permission such as replacing a door or window or altering gutters and downpipes.

Trees

Some trees are protected by legislation, and it is essential that you establish the legal status of trees prior to carrying out works to them. Unauthorised work to protected trees could lead to prosecution, resulting in enforcement action such as fines or a criminal record. Tree Preservation Orders, Conservation Areas, Planning Conditions, Felling Licences or Restrictive Covenants legally protect many trees in the UK.

Normal TPO procedures apply if a tree in a conservation area is already protected by a TPO (see below). However if a tree in a conservation area is not covered by a TPO, you must give at least six weeks notice to the local planning authority. There are exceptions to this requirement, including when the tree is dead, dying or has become dangerous. This notice period gives the local planning authority the opportunity to decide if it is necessary to impose a tree preservation order on the tree in order to discharge its duty to have special regard to the desirability of preserving or enhancing the character or appearance of the conservation area.

It is a criminal offence to carry out works to a tree where consent has been refused or where notice was required and not served on the local planning authority.

Tree Preservation Orders (TPOs)
TPOs are administered by Local Planning Authorities (LPA) (e.g. a borough, district or unitary council or a national park authority) and are made to protect trees that bring significant amenity benefit to the local area. This protection is particularly important where trees are under threat.

All types of tree, but not hedges, bushes or shrubs, can be protected, and a TPO can protect anything from a single tree to all trees within a defined area or woodland. Any species can be protected, but no species is automatically protected by a Tree Preservation Order.

A TPO is a written order which, in general, makes it a criminal offence to cut down, top, lop, uproot, wilfully damage or wilfully destroy a tree protected by that order, or to cause or permit such actions, without the authority’s permission. Anyone found guilty of such an offence is liable. In serious cases the case may be dealt with in the Crown Court where an unlimited fine can be imposed.

To make an application to carry out tree works you will need to complete an application form and submit it to the LPA. The form can either be submitted through the Planning Portal or directly to the LPA. You might also find it helpful to seek the advice of a tree surgeon prior to making an application.

Guide to tree preservation procedures

The tree owner is responsible for instructing contractors and owners must seek their own contractor to ensure quality. A very good source is the Arboricultural Association list of approved contractors

Contractor Directory

For more information about conservation areas please see the Historic England website

 

Guide to the planning process

We’re often asked about the Parish input into planning applications and how applications are decided.  Below is a brief guide:

Planning Applications are determined by South Cambridgeshire District Council. Whilst Cottenham Parish Council is entitled to comment on planning applications it cannot make a decision on them.  Current planning applications in the Parish are searchable on the South Cambridgeshire District Council website.  The Agenda for Parish Planning Committee Meetings with details of the planning applications to be discussed can be found on this website.

Cottenham Parish Council receives a copy of every planning application that affects the village.  Every planning application is considered at a meeting of our Planning Committee.  Meetings of the Planning Committee are advertised and members of the public are welcome to attend.  Most meetings take place in the Parish Office.  There is a period at the start of each meeting where members of the public, including those supporting or opposing an application, can make statements.  Councillors will then discuss and vote on the comments to be made by the Parish Council on each application.  When a decision is made on a planning application, only certain issues are taken into account; these are often referred to as material planning considerations (see below).

The Parish Council sends its comments to SCDC.  Members of the public can also submit comments to SCDC, either by post of using an online form.  If you send a comment to SCDC it would be helpful if you could also send a copy to the Parish Council as SCDC does not routinely forward comments to us.

A decision will then be made on the application. Most decisions are made by an officer (employee) of South Cambridgeshire District Council. Some are decided by a committee of SCDC councillors, usually because a SCDC councillor has asked for the application to be referred to a committee  If the decision is to be made by a committee the meeting will be advertised and members of the public can attend and make comments (but generally only one speaker in favour and one against). However if the decision is made by an officer it will be made in private and only written comments will be considered.

There is no guarantee that any decision will be in line with Cottenham Parish Council’s comments but most are since SCDC Council recognises that parish councillors are familiar with their local community.

If permission is refused, or is granted subject to conditions, the applicant may appeal to the Planning Inspectorate (an independent body). However neither Cottenham Parish Council nor anyone else opposed to a planning application can appeal if planning permission is granted.

SCDC is also responsible for ‘enforcement’ action, for example where development has taken place without planning permission. The Parish Council is not invited to comment on such action. Complaints about unauthorised development should be made direct to SCDC.

Material Planning Considerations

Issues that may be relevant to the decision (There may exist further material planning considerations not included here):

  • Local, strategic, national planning policies and policies in the Development Plan
  • Emerging new plans which have already been through at least one stage of public consultation
  • Pre-application planning consultation carried out by, or on behalf of, the applicant
  • Government and Planning Inspectorate requirements – circulars, orders, statutory instruments, guidance and advice
  • Previous appeal decisions and planning Inquiry reports
  • Principles of Case Law held through the Courts
  • (based on Building Research Establishment guidance)
  • Overshadowing/loss of outlook to the detriment of residential amenity (though not loss of view as such)
  • Overlooking and loss of privacy
  • Highway issues: traffic generation, vehicular access, highway safety
  • Noise or disturbance resulting from use, including proposed hours of operation
  • Smells and fumes
  • Capacity of physical infrastructure, e.g. in the public drainage or water systems
  • Deficiencies in social facilities, e.g. spaces in schools
  • Storage & handling of hazardous materials and development of contaminated land
  • Loss or effect on trees
  • Adverse impact on nature conservation
  • Effect on listed buildings and conservation areas
  • Incompatible or unacceptable uses
  • Local financial considerations offered as a contribution or grant
  • Layout and density of building design, visual appearance and finishing materials
  • Inadequate or inappropriate landscaping or means of enclosure

The weight attached to material considerations in reaching a decision is a matter of judgement for the decision-taker however the decision-taker is required to demonstrate that in reaching that decision that they have considered all relevant matters.

Generally greater weight is attached to issues raised which are supported by evidence rather than solely by assertion.  If an identified problem can be dealt with by means of a suitable condition then the Local Planning Authority is required to consider this rather than by issuing a refusal.

Non-Material Planning Considerations:

Issues that are not relevant to the decision (There exist further non-material planning considerations not included in this list):

  • Matters controlled under building regulations or other non-planning legislation e.g. structural stability, drainage details, fire precautions, matters covered by licences etc.
  • Private issues between neighbours e.g. land/boundary disputes, damage to property, private rights of access, covenants, ancient and other rights to light etc.
  • Problems arising from the construction period of any works, e.g. noise, dust, construction vehicles, hours of working (covered by Control of Pollution Acts).
  • Opposition to the principle of development when this has been settled by an outline planning permission or appeal
  • Applicant’s personal circumstances (unless exceptionally and clearly relevant, e.g. provision of facilities for someone with a physical disability)
  • Previously made objections/representations regarding another site or application
  • Factual misrepresentation of the proposal
  • Opposition to business competition
  • Loss of property value
  • Loss of view