Inaugural meeting of the Arbury Road East Residents’ Association
Monday, 9th December, 2019 – Arbury Road Baptist Church Hall – 7.00p.m.
Welcome and Introduction
Vincent Poole welcomed everyone and introduced the purposes of the evening:
- A need to be an official constituted body to deal with pressing issues
- The probable introduction of a Resident Parking scheme
- A pre-consultation meeting to be held in the next month or two
- How changes in Histon Road and Milton Road will affect Arbury Road
A constitution has been prepared for examination by the people attending the meeting.
Committee roles need to be filled.
Background and need for ARERA
Lucy Edgeley introduced the background to setting up the official ARERA.
Some years ago, ARETA had been a small group of residents raising awareness of increase of fast traffic and the dangers that posed in the south-eastern end of Arbury Road.
Arbury Road could be divided into three sections:
- The north-western end where cycle lanes have now been built
- From Campkin Road to where the road narrows
- From the narrowing to the Milton Road traffic lights
Each section has quite a different character.
Two years ago, we received the plan for forthcoming changes to Milton Road and this caused the setting up of several Residents’ Associations in the area because residents wanted those plans to be changed.
ARERA was set up and registered with FECRA although we were not a constituted body.
It is important for us now to become one, in order to pursue changes to make Arbury Road safer for residents and those who travel along it to schools, doctor and dental surgeries, retirement homes, vet surgery.
We also take account of the needs of the shops at the Milton Road corner and of those attending Arbury Road Baptist Church, who kindly allow us the use of the hall for no charge.
Ian Cooper spoke about why we need to become official now.
Extensive road works are due to begin in Histon Road and Milton Road and this is bound to affect traffic on Arbury Road.
The north-western end of Arbury Road to North Cambridge Academy has new cycle lanes but nothing has been done at the south-eastern end to make cyclists and pedestrians safer.
There should be ‘phase three’ money available in the future but not now. We need to get ourselves organised for when money becomes available.
However, Mike Davies, who has been responsible for the development of cycle routes in the city, has said there is money for a pre-consultation workshop which could be held in January. Grant Weller would oversee it.
At this meeting, professional facilitators would come with plans of the road and we would make our suggestions for making it safer and more pleasant for those who live here. It is a residential road.
Suggestions have been:
- Make Arbury Road one way – consider the pros and cons of either way
- Close Arbury Road – where?
- At the shops
- At North Cambridge Academy
- At Leys Road
Councillor Ian Manning had suggested trials of road closure using temporary bollards.
Question from the floor:
- What does ‘close the road’ mean?
- Make it a ‘no through road’.
‘No parking’ on Arbury Road has been considered as a possibility by the Council.
If the workshop is to be held in January, there is not much time to make suggestions.
Looking ahead, within ten years the government will prohibit combustion engines and there will be a need for electrical charging points to be widely available.
Suggestion from the floor:
- Limit vehicles over 7.5cwt from using the road?
- But what about emergency service vehicles?
- Ian understands that Arbury Road is no longer a principal route for emergency vehicles.
Ian Cooper said that Hurst Park estate is concerned at becoming more of a ‘rat run’ if we close the road.
Comments from the floor:
- Was ARERA too concerned about cyclists and not thinking enough about residents who have had front gardens made into parking spaces and find it difficult getting from there onto the road.
- It was great that so many had come to the meeting. Arbury Road does not work for residents and road users now but there was a will to improve things.
- There are now four crossings for pedestrians within a very short distance between the playground and Campkin road, which can be challenging for traffic.
- New broadband cable is being installed in the near future. This will mean roadworks.
Question from the floor:
- Q: What is the process for allocating money?
- A: Ian Cooper answered that it is complicated as we have to deal with both the City Council and the County Council and the City Deal Partnership. However Councillor Jocelyn Scutt has been a great advocate for the Residents Associations.
Proposed Parking Scheme
Vincent Poole spoke about the proposed Residents’ Parking Scheme.
Ascham Road and Gurney Way now have Resident Parking.
Commuter parking has moved from Gurney Way and Ascham Road to the Hurst Park Estate and it is now dangerous trying to drive along Hurst Park Avenue.
In the area referred to as ‘the Triangle’, which includes Herbert Street and George Street, commuters have added to the limited parking available to residents.
Councillor Ian Manning is keen to push through a scheme that would include ‘the Triangle’, Hurst Park Estate and Arbury Road, with same conditions applying in all those roads.
Where do commuters go next?
Comments from the floor:
- Should there be designated parking spaces for the shops? At the moment, vans and Lorries parked all over the pavement make things dangerous for pedestrians and cyclists.
- What happens with Homes of Multiple Occupation where several residents have cars?
- Would all these areas have the same conditions of Resident Parking?
- If the aim is to stop commuters leaving a car all day, no parking between 12 and 2 is a possibility.
- Surely the Council should think holistically, for the whole of Cambridge and not just push commuter parking further and further out.
- There are no yellow lines on the Arbury Baptist Church side of the road. What is to stop parking on that side?
- This has been tried a few years ago but police arrived within a very short space of time to ask the owner of the car to move it.
Graham Edgeley said that the plan to make Histon Road one way going out of town, would probably be for at least a year while work was done and that he has heard that this would start in March 2020. Commuters would be directed along Madingley Road and King’s Hedges Road. But he feared that many would come along Arbury Road.
Limiting the weight of vehicles along Arbury Road is a good idea.
We must be ready with other suggestions.
The Constitution of Arbury Road East Residents’ Association
- Members may choose not to have their personal details shared with the Council
- Suggested membership fee is £5.00 (per person or per household? Committee to sort)
- Committee members in post for how long? 3years, when they may be re-elected
- Best practice is to hold an AGM and one open meeting a year
Agreement to use a bank
The Constitution was accepted by a vote of all present on 9/12/2019
11 of those present were willing to be committee members.
- George Vardulakis
- Jonathan Gorrie
- Vincent Poole
- Tracey Poole
- Maggie Fernie
- Ian Cooper
- James Westley
- Lucy Edgele
- Marilyn Smith
- Ros Lund
- Simon Crisp
Chair: Marilyn Smith
Vice chair: Lucy Edgeley
Secretaries: Ian Cooper, Maggie Fernie. Vincent Poole
Treasurers: Rosalind Lund and Simon Crisp
Newsletter: Jane Kroese
Website: John Barker and Vincent Poole
Cycling Schemes: George Vardulakis and Matthew Danish
Social events: James Westley
Representative for local businesses: (John at the butchers would be asked by his wife who was
present at the meeting)
Liaison with the Council: Vincent Poole and Ian Cooper
Liaison with Histon Road: Matthew Danish
Ros Lund thanked those who had been involved up till now and said how important it was to share everyone’s ideas.
The meeting concluded.
Minutes recorded by Maggie Fernie