Meadow Road: from brownfield to green!
The Meadow Road site, now under the stewardship of the Parish Council, has had a chequered past. It was a good example of a brownfield site because of its past industrial use. Since acquiring the site the Parish Council has invested considerable time and effort in the regeneration of the land. The site has been levelled. Rubble, hardcore and other waste material have been covered with the topsoil the levelling produced. All visible holes have been filled and old tree stumps and rubbish removed. The Parish Council now considers the site ready for recreational use by villagers – please visit it.
To commemorate the 2020 Anniversary of VE and VJ Day and assist in the regeneration process the Parish Council is considering planting a wood along with sowing poppy seeds this autumn. These would be in flower in June 2020.
The future of Parkside Police Station in Cambridge is being considered. The building no longer meets the current needs of the police. One option would be to develop a Southern Police Station in Milton. A public consultation about this proposal is now underway and you are invited to take part in this by completing an online questionnaire at: https://www.cambridgeshire-pcc.gov.uk/get-involved/your-views/have-your-say.
The police are warning car drivers about a new credit card scam. Individuals posing as police or traffic wardens approach car drivers and advise them that they are parking illegally. The car driver is offered the chance of paying a small fine ‘on the spot’ by credit card. The victim is directed to a previously tampered machine for payment which then refuses to return the card. The police advise the following three steps: check with the local council if you think the fine is not authentic, always shield your PIN number, contact your bank immediately if your credit card is retained by an ATM.
The Parish Council has decided to take a robust approach to any fly-grazing incidents on its land. A new streamlined approach is now available allowing land owners to remove fly-grazing stock more quickly.
Traffic and the environment
The Parish Council is making two funding bids for highway improvements on Earith Road. The first was to the A14 Community Fund and asked for funding to complete the pavement along Earith Road as far as the Community Orchard. The second, a Local Highways Improvement Scheme application, would introduce a speed reduction ‘buffer’ zone along Earith Road so that drivers traffic entering the village would not have to reduce speed from 60 to 30 mph in one step. A 40 mph zone would be introduced to encourage speed reductions both in and out of the village.
South Cambridgeshire District Council Enforcement Officers have been serving enforcement notices on developers in Northstowe about breaches of condition on working time. Our District Councillors are planning to meet with their Enforcement Officers to discuss the flows of construction traffic for Northstowe which travel through Willingham. Complementing this, discussions are ongoing with the County Council to place signs advising heavy goods traffic for Northstowe not to travel through our village.
The Parish Council has also been submitting proposals and making representations to our MP and the Combined Authority Mayor about fen-edge village bus services. It wants better connectivity between these villages and the Guided Busway. The Combined Authority Mayor acknowledges the need for innovation and is aware of our local demands but notes that his authority has limited funds to provide support.
Long Pond – long wait
The County Council is responsible for the fencing around Long Pond. It was originally placed there despite the objections of the Parish Council. The fencing is in poor repair and the County Council has been asked to repair this many times! The County Council is moving very slowly to deal with this request.
The Ploughman Hall and Recreation Field
The area around the Ploughman Hall and Recreation Field has been well used by the community and visitors in recent weeks with three well-supported local events taking place – the Willingham Wolves Football Festival, the Beer Festival and the Fen Gallop.
Councillors were also invited to visit the ‘pop-up’ café being trialled by Willingham Youth Trust from its premises. It can be reported that an excellent cup of coffee is available! The opportunity was also offered to observe the Trust’s Coding Club. This allows younger members of the village to develop their computer skills in an informal environment. Perhaps there could be a similar opportunity for older village members?
The Parish Council thanks all the organisers of these events and their teams of helpers for their voluntary efforts in making sure activities run smoothly and safely and raising the village profile throughout the region. It would also like to thank everyone who took the time to complete the MUGA Survey. This has now finished and the results of this exercise are awaited.
Willingham News – June 2019
The major overhaul is complete and the clock is running very well. It is taking a little while to fine tune the regulation so that the mechanism runs accurately. As with Big Ben the pendulum swing is adjusted with small weights that make a difference of only a few seconds a day. Good progress is being made and by the time this issue of Willingham News is published we hope to have the clock accurate to within half a minute throughout the day, just as it would have been when originally installed in 1887.
If like me you are just an ordinary, law abiding, citizen you will not have been amused to have been told that your internet is about to be cut off due to improper use unless you pay a fee or that your bank details have been compromised and that you need to immediately contact a nice man in Nigeria who will sort it all out. These are just a few of the scams that we get frequently by phone, text or email. Most of us are confident that we are too wise to be caught but the scammers are getting more and more sophisticated and the problem is growing into an international multibillion-dollar business. Please be careful and if you would like some advice, there is a very good website at cambridgeshireinsight.org.uk/CAPASP.
Thanks to all of you who responded to our survey regarding a Multi-Use Games Area on the recreation ground (and if you are reading this before the closing date of 30 June there is still time to fill one in on the PC website or pick it up from the Post Office or Library). The results will give us a good picture of the sports that should be included, and we can then move ahead with detailed plans. It will be partly funded by money from the new developments in the village, and we will be applying for grant funding to make up the rest.
The play facilities on the QE2 field are proving a great attraction for families from Willingham and other surrounding villages with many bringing along a picnic. They are most welcome to do so but, sadly, a few, are spoiling it for others by leaving litter lying around, including dirty nappies. Please enjoy the open space and ensure others can enjoy it too by using the bins for your litter or taking it home. If you see anyone who is not treating the area with respect then tell us and, if we can identify them, we will take action.
Our thanks are due to our District Councillors, Dawn Percival and Bill Handley, who have helped us with several tricky problems over the last few months. They are very approachable and hold quarterly surgeries in the Ploughman Hall. The next one is on Saturday 6th July between 11 am and 1 pm. Pop in and see them if you have a problem with which you think they might be able to help. Our County Councillor, Tim Wotherspoon, is also hoping to be in attendance.