Amongst other developments in 2013 two stand out as potentially having a major impact on Histon & Impington and, if our community doesn’t respond with vigour, could result in changes which we would not want to see.
The first was the publication of the South Cambs Local Plan which was later approved by South Cambs’ Cabinet and is now going through the ‘objections’ stage before it can be adopted. Our community and the Parish Council were largely successful during this process and as a result:
- plans to put 350 houses on Buxhall Farm were not approved although we can expect the developer to come back and object to this; and
- plans to use Bypass Farm for recreation space and for the area around Histon Station to be a mixed-use development were approved. However because the Local Plan is not yet adopted a developer has submitted plans for the Bishop’s site (part of the station area) which do not conform.
The Local Plan referred to a Local Transport Strategy which included some grand ideas but no funding. This came along later.
The second development was the Government’s approval of a City Deal for Cambridge. This will give Cambridge (and South Cambs) access to over £1billion for infrastructure to support growth and it is this deal which will enable the Local Transport Strategy to be funded. There’s a lot in this which doesn’t directly affect H&I but there’s also much that does including congestion on the B1049 and improvements in bus services including guided bus connections.
If we are going to be able to influence these developments in a way that ensures that they enhance our villages and improve the quality our lives we must have our own planning framework in place and that means a Neighbourhood Plan.
Neighbourhood Plans are relatively new and not many have been developed. Typically local councils (town and parish) take the lead but they must reflect extensive local involvement. When adopted, the process can take 18 months to two years, the plans are material planning considerations and development plans can be rejected because they do not conform.
A Neighbourhood Plan for Histon & Impington is important and we need your support.
The Parish Council has initiated the Neighbourhood Plan process and there will be an open meeting in the Community room at the Rec on Thursday 6 Feb 14. Come along if you’re interested in how our villages will develop in the future and how you can play a role in that process.
We will be building a body of relevant information on this web-site