This months meeting was primarily concerned with the major planning applications that will effect the village. In the first instance we were informed that the planning application for the Solar Farm has just been submitted. The council’s view on this is to oppose it on the grounds that it is in the green belt even though we appreciate the efforts to provide energy from renewable sources. The application is likely to be considered by SCDC during the summer.
We also understand that the planning application for the next phase of development at Babraham Research Campus is to be submitted in the week beginning 14 July. Again the council is objecting on the principle of wanting to preserve our green belt protection. Whilst we continue to support the research campus we believe that we cannot allow exceptions or special cases as inevitably they will mount up to a significant erosion of the protection the green belt affords us.
Following the recent granting of the application for the football stadium on the edge of Sawston nearest us the PC is in negotiation with SCDC and the developers architects to see what can be done to lessen the inevitable increase in traffic this development will cause. It is not just the odd football match that will increase traffic flows it is also the use of the venue for conferences, weddings, parties and a weekly Sunday morning car boot sale. The council has agreed to keep fighting this application and whilst we are unlikely to be able to win the argument for a rescinding of the approval we hope to be able to at least gain some measures to restrict the amount of traffic using the village as a route to the venue. These negotiations are continuing.
On a more promising development the council reports that the riverside public art has been generally well received. The research campus is to put in place the improvements to the riverside path they promised, benches and information boards etc. and is actively considering commissioning some additional sculptures by the same artist, Lucy Unwin.
Councillor Mike Read tendered his resignation as he is sadly moving out of the village. This of course means there will be a vacancy on the council. If anyone is interested in the business of village life and has a little time to give then please contact us for more information. The council only has five members, the work involved is light and both very interesting and useful.