Parish e-bulletin from South Cambs District Council for March 2021

March 2021 parish e-bulletin

News and information from South Cambridgeshire District Council

Welcome to the latest e-bulletin. We hope you and your communities are well and preparing to welcome the upcoming phases of the road-map out of lockdown. Our Council teams continue to face challenges as we respond to the Coronavirus pandemic and the recovery plans, and we are keeping in touch with you and local Covid-19 community groups to update you on this on a regular basis. This bi-monthly parish e-bulletin covers important notices we would like to draw your attention to from other teams in the Council.



  1. Elections on Thursday 6 May. 1
  2. Funding opportunities. 2
  3. Planning updates. 5
  4. Easter Bin collection dates. 5
  5. Young people’s wellbeing. 7


1. Elections on Thursday 6 May

Elections are taking place on Thursday 6 May across South Cambridgeshire, including elections for the Police and Crime Commissioner, Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority Mayor and Cambridgeshire County Council. There will be processes in place at our polling stations to make them as safe as possible. The deadline for registering to vote is 19 April and the deadline to apply for a postal vote is 20 April at 5pm.


Contact: elections@scambs.gov.uk

2. Funding opportunities

2.1. COVID Recovery Community Chest Grant

To help groups and projects begin to resume their activities as we come out of lockdown, we have earmarked a £30,000 Covid recovery grant fund as part of our Community Chest funding. This is specifically designed to help local community groups and Parish Councils resume community activities which have been difficult or impossible during the pandemic.


The eligibility criteria for our Community Chest Grant scheme have been temporarily amended to allow applications for grants of up to £2,000 for Covid recovery related projects and initiatives. Previously, few parish councils could apply to the scheme but for the next eight weeks – up until 10th May 2021 – it is open to all Parish Councils as well as community groups, with applications being considered at the May 28th Grants Advisory Committee meeting. Meanwhile, the normal Community Chest scheme continues to run for community groups for a maximum grant of £1,000.

The process is the same for both types of application – just select which grant you are applying for at the start of the process.


Contact: Community.Chest@scambs.gov.uk

2.2. Parish Councils may be eligible for support grants for properties

Parish Councils may be eligible for one of the Local Restrictions Support Grants for properties with a rateable value that were mandated to close due to Coronavirus restrictions (since November). The deadline to apply for this grant is 31 March. If you have not applied and think you may be eligible, please apply before the deadline.


Contact: BusinessGrants@scambs.gov.uk

2.3. Community ownership fund

The Government has launched a new £150 million Community Ownership Fund. The fund is aimed at helping to ensure that communities across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland can support and continue benefiting from the local facilities, community assets and amenities most important to them. At this stage, we know that community groups will be able to bid for up to £250,000 matched-funding to help them buy or take over local community assets at risk of being lost, to run as community-owned businesses.


We do not know at this stage if there is any link between this fund and assets that have already been registered as an Asset of Community Value – a process we administer. The first bidding round for the Community Ownership Fund will open by June 2021. At that point, the Government has said that a full bidding prospectus will be published.

More information is available on the Gov.uk website.

Contact: duty.communities@scambs.gov.uk

2.4. Tools and funding to make your community safer and stronger

The Community Safety Partnership between South Cambridgeshire District Council, Cambridgeshire County Council, the Police, Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service, the NHS and the Probation Service, meets together to tackle local crime and anti-social behaviour. We want to encourage residents to take ownership of some of these local issues to create local solutions – and there is funding and support available to help you do this.


Grants of between £50 and £500 are currently available to improve community safety as well as improve cohesion. Apply before 30 September 2021. Voluntary groups, charities, parish councils and enthusiastic individuals can apply for funding for anything from printing leaflets or posters, hosting a website, buying equipment for a Speedwatch group, litter picking, creating a community garden or accessing training. For further information, please contact Linda Gallagher: 07376 901 019.

2.5. Zero Carbon Communities grant: Round 3 opens 10 May

Round 3 of our Zero Carbon Communities Grant will open on Monday 10 May to provide funding of between £1,000 and £15,000 to parish councils and voluntary sector organisations for projects that support the shift to zero carbon emissions by 2050.


This time, we will be inviting applications under two main themes plus an extra general theme for exceptional projects; with each theme being allocated a nominal percentage of a £100k grant fund:


  • Community buildings (40%)
  • Nature (40%)
  • Other projects (20%)

The closing date for applications is 30 July.


Please email zcc@scambs.gov.uk if you would like to discuss your potential project before making an application. More information will also be available soon on this part of our website.

2.6. Funding for creativity in the lives of people with mental ill health from ethnically diverse backgrounds

The Baring Foundation, an independent foundation which protects and advances human rights and promotes inclusion, has launched a new fund for projects that promote the role of creativity in the lives of people with mental health problems from ethnically diverse backgrounds.


Grants of £10,000 to £40,000 are available for projects that: 

  • find ways to attract participatory artists from ethnically diverse communities into this area of work, and/or
  • undertake activity to offer creative opportunities to members of specific ethnically diverse communities who have mental health problems.

3. Planning updates

3.1. Planning Area Teams

Contact details for the new Area Teams officers in the Greater Cambridge Shared Planning Service are now regularly updated on our website. If you have a query about a planning application, please visit our Development Management Area Teams page and for all other planning contacts, visit our planning contacts page.

3.2. Parish Area Forums

Thank you to everyone who has attended our first round of the new-style Area Forums for parish councils. We hope you found them useful and all parishes should now have received the links to the Zoom recordings. If you missed the links, please email Beverley Childs.

3.3. Housing trajectory published

The Greater Cambridge Shared Planning Service has now published its updated housing trajectory and five-year housing land supply position statement.  This concludes that Cambridge City and South Cambridgeshire jointly have 6.1 years of housing land supply for the 2021-2026 five-year period. This conclusion is based on our five-year housing land supply being calculated jointly, using the Liverpool methodology, and applying a 5% buffer. 


For more information please visit our Monitoring delivery webpage

4. Easter Bin collection dates

All bin collection dates over the Easter weekend and the following bank holidays will be later this year. Dates can also be checked using the online calendar.

Usual collection day

Revised collection day

Good Friday 02 April

Tuesday 06 April

Easter Monday 05 May

Wednesday 07 April

Tuesday 06 April

Thursday 08 April

Wednesday 07 April

Friday 09 April

Thursday 08 April

Saturday 10 April

Friday 09 April

Monday 12 April

Monday 12 April

Tuesday 13 April

Tuesday 13 April

Wednesday 14 April

Wednesday 14 April

Thursday 15 April

Thursday 15 April

Friday 16 April

Friday 16 April

Saturday 17 April


Monday 19 April – Friday 30 April

Collections as normal


Monday 03 May

Tuesday 04 May

Tuesday 04 May

Wednesday 05 May

Wednesday 05 May

Thursday 06 May

Thursday 06 May

Friday 07 May

Friday 07 May

Saturday 08 May


Monday 10 May – Friday 28 May

Collections as normal


Monday 31 May

Tuesday 01 June

Tuesday 01 June

Wednesday 02 June

Wednesday 02 June

Thursday 03 June

Thursday 03 June

Friday 04 June

Friday 04 June

Saturday 05 June

Monday 07 June

Back to normal


Contact: waste.enquiries@scambs.gov.uk

5. Young people’s wellbeing

5.1. Wild Minds: outdoor wellbeing activities for teenagers

South Cambridgeshire District Council with Cambridge Sport Lakes Trust is running eight-week programmes of FREE weekend wellbeing sessions for 14-17 year olds who are experiencing some anxiety, low mood, or other mild mental health difficulties. Based at Milton Country Park, the small group of 8-10 teenagers will be supported by skilled instructors and youth workers in therapeutic outdoor activities such as bush craft, survival skills, yoga, and paddle boarding on the lake. The project is also supported by a Clinical Psychologist. The two-hour sessions place particular emphasis on young people being in contact with nature and the outdoors, and aim to improve mental health and build confidence and connections with peers in a therapeutic environment.


Visit our website for more information or contact Leah Collis: Leah.Collis@scambs.gov.uk

5.2. A summer of play

Child development experts are calling for a summer of play. If you would like to support the summer of play in your community, please feel free to access some useful resources:

Add your signature to this petition to fight against 25,000 homes in this area

  • Petition is online, but residents can write or phone if they wish to sign but do not have internet access:
  • The deadline for signing is 5pm on Wed 31st March as we hope to get it debated at Full Council by SCDC in April.


Public Meeting Thursday 18th March 21 at 6.30pm virtual Anthony Browne addressing the Thakeham homes planning issue. Please attend if you can.




Good morning,

Since Thakeham’s announcement of a proposed 25,000 home development in South Cambridgeshire, I have been very clear with them and you – I cannot and will not support these proposals. Residents, local councillors, and campaigners have made their views clear too. No-one wants this development. 

I am aware that this issue is being discussed across the constituency, and I want to ensure you are informed about both the facts of this proposal and the campaign against it. I am therefore writing to invite you to attend a virtual public meeting with campaign groups and Parish Councils at 18:30 on Thursday 18 March, live-streamed via Facebook and Youtube. 

If you would like to attend please do set a reminder by clicking one of the links below. There will be an opportunity to ask questions on the evening via the comment functions on both streams, but if you do wish to pre-submit questions please email anthony.browne.mp@parliament.uk

I very much hope you will be able to join us and assist in the campaign against this unnecessary development.  

Yours sincerely,


Anthony Browne
MP for South Cambridgeshire

Covid Update – follow guidelines for Mothers’ Day

Covid-19 update – 11 March 2021

Dear volunteer coordinators and parish councillors


With Mother’s Day on Sunday, the County Council will be reminding anyone planning to mark the day to do so safely and within the current ‘Stay Home’ guidelines. I’m sure everyone is already aware, but the case rates are not yet as low as we would hope so we need to make further progress with reducing the case rate before restrictions are further eased at the end of the month. Please do share social media posts from the County or our social channels over the weekend to help share this message.


We know that the pandemic has added a disproportionate burden onto women but, with everyone receiving this email having voluntarily taken on additional activities to support others during the year, I would like to wish you all a restful weekend and hope you have a chance to take some time for yourselves.

Community briefing webinar: Monday 15 March, 6pm to 7pm

Community Groups and Parish Councils have been sent an invitation to our next session. As before, the session will be chaired by Liz Watts and we will be presenting current Covid information and stats relating to our district. We also have some presentations around ‘Long Covid’, reopening facilities safely, and an update on work happening as we start moving into a recovery phase. As always there will be plenty of opportunity to ask questions. We look forward to seeing you there.

Vaccines for people over the age of 56

The National Booking Service is now open to all those aged 56+. Book a Covid-19 vaccination now via www.nhs.uk/coronavirus or by calling 119 for those who aren’t online.

Vaccine transport update

A number of community transport schemes and taxi firms are available to support people with transport to their Covid-19 vaccination appointments. For residents needing help they can access details online or by calling 0345 045 5219 from Monday to Friday, between 9am and 5pm. The call operator will run people through the form to identify transport options available locally. All transport providers are DBS checked and most require a minimum 24 hours’ notice for bookings. 

Census 2021: Scam reminder for our communities

Ahead of Census Day (Sunday 21 March), Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Against Scams Partnership advised that it may be useful to know more about the Census to help prevent scams:

  • This is the first ‘digital Census’, with most people being asked to complete the census online (help is available for those who need it)
  • The Census team will not call households for information about their census, unless they have made an appointment with the Census Contact Centre, or they have raised a query or made a complaint. There will be no cold calls.
  • If people complete the census form online, there will be no home visits by Census Officers.
  • If people don’t complete their form, Census Officers may visit people’s homes to offer help to complete it. They will carry official identification cards with a photograph and the officer’s name. They will never ask to enter the property.
  • Census Officers will never ask for national insurance numbers, passwords, bank account details, or credit or debit card numbers.

Figuring out our next steps towards recovery

The Women Thrive Fund

The Rosa and Smallwood Trust helps to strengthen specialist women’s organisations so they can meet the needs of the women and girls they work with. Rosa has opened a new fund offering grants of up to £40,000 to not-for-profit organisations (£15,000 for organisations with a turnover up to £200,000) to support women and girls to overcome the barriers they face due to the pandemic. Its two themes are financial resilience and mental health and wellbeing. The deadline is 25 March 2021, with ‘how to apply’ webinars on various dates beforehand.

Innovate and Cultivate Fund

The next deadline to apply to the Innovate & Cultivate Fund is 1 May 2021. The aim of the fund is to support initiatives that strengthen communities and reduce pressure on County Council services. Applications are invited in the areas of adult social care and children’s services, and 1-2-1 pre-application advice is available on 18 and 23 March, and must be pre-booked.

The fund is open to voluntary, community and social enterprise sector organisations and public sector organisations. The 1 May funding round is for ‘Cultivate’ grant applications (£2,000 to £15,000) for projects that build community support networks for vulnerable people. The ‘Innovate’ funding stream (£15,000 to £50,000) is suspended until further notice.

Cultivate Project Ideas

Do you want to do something for your community but need some inspiration to start a project? The County Council has developed application guidance for three new Cultivate project ideas: Mobile Warden Schemes, Community Youth Worker and Digital Inclusion Projects. Funded projects could help people to remain independent and active within their community, encourage volunteering and complement more costly Council services. Applications for Timebanks, Good Neighbour Schemes, Dementia-Friendly Communities and Men’s Sheds continue to be invited.


You can read more about these initiatives and obtain guidance as to how to apply for a start-up grant, or apply via the Cambridgeshire Community Foundation (CCF) website.

Communities Can Conference – 24 March

The National Lottery Community Fund event will bring together learning and insights gained over the past year with key funders, looking at the challenges faced during the pandemic and the lessons that have been learned. The event will explore the positive takeaways from the past year and how they can be implemented to ensure funders are fit for the future. The panellists will discuss their role in enabling communities to build back better, from small grant funding to sharing insights and advocating for change. Further details and registration can be found here.

Best wishes

Bill Handley

Lead Cabinet Member for Community Resilience, Health & Wellbeing

South Cambridgeshire District Council

Anthony Browne MP report 05.03.21

South Cambridgeshire strides ahead

The pandemic remains at the forefront of everyone’s mind, but I’m pleased that we’re now charting the course away from the difficulties of the last year.  The vaccination programme continues apace in South Cambridgeshire, thanks to the enormous efforts of our NHS staff and volunteers. We now have the government’s roadmap to help schools, businesses, and families to plan for the future.

Scroll down to find out what I’ve been focusing on over the last month, including:

  • Making the case for an upgraded Girton Interchange.
  • Pushing Thakeham to drop their proposed 25,000 home scheme. 
  • Holding meetings with ministers and campaign groups to push for a full consultation on a northern route for East-West Rail.
  • Bringing together industry leaders to promote negative carbon emissions standards.
  • Campaigning for South Cambridgeshire to be classed as water-stressed to help save our chalk streams. 
Latest News
Campaign updates

East-West Rail

Having met with the Rail Minister, I am supporting the local case for a full and open consultation process on a Northern Route option.
Find out more here

Life Science

My inaugural South Cambridgeshire Life Sciences Forum allowed local life science businesses direct access to top Government policy makers.
Find out more here

Thakeham Proposals

Last week I met with the CEO of Thakeham and asked him to drop his proposals and to confirm there was no route to bypass the planning process.
Find out more here

Planning & Development

My South Cambridgeshire Development survey is now closed. I’m pleased to say we received almost 3,000 responses, and I want to thank everyone who wrote in. 
More on next steps here
Upcoming Events

Facebook Live Q&A

Thursday 11 March – 17:00
My monthly online Q&A session where you can ask me anything. Follow my Facebook page here to set a reminder.

Constituency Surgery

Friday 12 March – Fully booked
Friday 16 April    – 13:00-15:00
I hold regular surgeries to meet constituents and discuss their concerns

Constituent Environment Forum

Thursday 17 June – 16:00
A bi-annual forum for constituents to meet and talk about environmental issues. More information can be found here.


“This is a Budget for rescue, a Budget for recovery and a Budget for repair. As a Budget for rescue, it is absolutely right that the Chancellor has continued support for people and businesses until the pandemic is well and truly over. His actions have saved 1.8 million jobs, probably more than any other Chancellor in history”

This is all a good combination of support, prudence, and growth, and I fully support it.
Anthony in the media


Budget preview (Channel 4 News) 
Post Budget interview (Cambridge 105)
Post Budget interview (Talk Radio)
Post Budget interview (BBC Radio Cambridgeshire)
Cambridge’s Girton Interchange could be upgraded to reduce congestion at rush hour
South Cambs MP urges residents to respond to consultation on water usage and droughts

Tory backbenchers to push for ambitious net-zero policy ahead of COP26
East of England: 420,000 new homes needed in next decade, figures show

UK urged to use presidency of G7 and COP26 to help ‘green global finance’
Developers of new town with 25,000 homes were in “advanced discussions” with Homes England


A proportional property tax would be a disaster (Spectator) 
Why the UK’s fall in GDP is not the worst of the G7, but in the middle (Conservative Home)
We are trailblazers in curbing emissions – whatever the green lobby says! (Times Red Box)
The EU is stepping up its raid on the City of London (Spectator)
The Budget could be an awkward moment for fiscal conservatives (Spectator)
Why the Chancellor is right to increase Corporation Tax (Conservative Home)

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Network Rail Public Consultation

The Network Rail Cambridge Resignalling, Relock & Recontrol – Public Consolation opens today


I am writing to advise that Network Rail’s public consultation for plans to upgrade the signalling in the Cambridge area to improve reliability and performance of the current infrastructure opens today for the next six weeks.


The signalling systems around Cambridge were installed in the 1980s and are reaching the end of their expected operational life. Network Rail is proposing to replace hundreds of signalling assets across an area of 125 miles of track, stretching from Meldreth and Elsenham to the south, through Cambridge, up to Ely to the north and Thurston to the east, as well as Croxton level crossing (in Norfolk) on the cross-country line to Norwich. The new signalling will help to put passengers first by:

  • Improving reliability, performance, and efficiency of the railway
  • Improving safety for all rail users in the Cambridge area
  • Improving safety at seven level crossings for all crossing and rail users

Link to our press release:



How to have your say
Network Rail is seeking feedback to help develop the proposals before proceeding with seeking authorisation through a Transport and Works Act order. The public can view the consultation materials and provide their comments by visiting the project’s webpage and follow the link to the consultation portal and the online survey: www.networkrail.co.uk/cambridge-resignalling

A dedicated email address is also available to send questions about the proposals to: CambridgeC3R@networkrail.co.uk

The public can also call a dedicated project hotline with questions or to request a hardcopy of the consultation documents by calling 0800 160 1426 between 1 March to 15th March at the following times:

Monday, Tuesday and Thursday: 2pm-5pm
Wednesday: 5pm – 8pm
Saturday: 10am – 1pm

Subject to obtaining the necessary consents, the work is expected to begin by the early part of 2022 and is currently planned to be complete by 2025. Upon completion the project is expected to have replaced almost 700 signalling assets.

For more information about the proposals and details on how to contact us during the consultation, please view our project webpage: www.networkrail.co.uk/cambridge-resignalling

Please follow us on Twitter @networkrailANG using the hashtag #CambridgeC3R


Kind Regards


Stephen Deaville

Senior Communications Manager

Network Rail – Anglia route


Follow us on Twitter: @NetworkrailANG