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The bright sunshine gradually warmed a very chilly early morning as we prepared for the Remembrance Sunday parade and service, and it was also warming to see so many who had turned out to commemorate those who had given so much for their fellow villagers. This kind of event can only work with the involvement of many components. Different youth groups were represented – the Primary School, Village College, the various Guide and Scout groups and the Colts all played their part. This year we welcomed adult members of Cottenham Football Club into the parade.

Thanks go to all those groups mentioned above.

Other thanks to individuals go to many, including those who gave out orders of service, laid a wreath or stood with poppy boxes and collecting tins, securing the wreaths after the service, and of course the Cottenham and Rampton residents who made up the congregation. A report of the Cottenham and Rampton Poppy Appeal will be in the next Newsletter. Ann Scott, Chairman, Royal British Legion, Cottenham and Rampton Branch.

The Caledonian Pipe Band led us to the War Memorial and our resident band, Cottenham Brass, played throughout the service. The Parish Council was responsible for managing the road closure under the direction of Martin McCarthy and Carol Barrios and her team dealt with the ‘people’ management. The service was led by the Rev. Lynda Davies, vicar of All Saints’ Church, with contributions from Kate Lees, Minister at the Baptist Church, and Major Paul Cooper of the Salvation Army. Colin Summerfield and his team again provided the excellent PA system and Greg from the Chequers generously opened up in the midst of refurbishment to provide our electrical supply again this year.

Photo courtesy of David Bradley

FEAST PARADE They came. They lined the High Street. They donated. Thank you to all who put change into the tins, bags and buckets. The total was £829.20. Our appreciation also goes to the local companies who donated in advance of the Feast Parade. They were Barkers Bakery, Busy Bees Recruitment, The Chequers, Cosworth Electronics, Cottenham Parish Council, Cottenham Tyre and Auto, Dentons Carpets, Lingwood Dog Daycare, Longhorn Farm shop, Malary Oil, MHH Partnership, Not Just Baguettes, Polarglaze, R J Pepper, Sarah Jane Hairdressing and Village Vets. After a few costs of running the event, the total gets shared amongst local charities and community groups. We’ve happily given to a wide range of recipients, to help with their activities in Cottenham.

They walked. They rode on floats. They drove tractors, trucks and a fire engine. Thank you to all the groups that took part in the Feast Parade for looking marvellous, being safe and collecting the coins.


We’re looking forward to organising in 2020. We’d love for the stalls and funfair to return, on a bigger scale. It was lovely to have Cottenham Brass Band on the Green for everyone’s enjoyment this year, which hopefully can be repeated annually. Emma, Margaret and Zach

HOLLY WALK The Boxing Day Holly Walk will take place as usual this year, on Thursday 26 December.

Christmas vouchers have been given by Cottenham Charities for many years to help individuals and families on low income to meet the cost of Christmas. Cottenham Charities and the Fitzwilliam Charity provide the funds for the scheme. Residents in the Parish in receipt of Income Support, Incapacity Benefit, Employment and Support Allowance, Pension Credit, Housing Benefit or Universal Credit are eligible but we are not able to consider those receiving Jobseeker’s Allowance.

Join us at 10:30am at the Broad Lane/High Street junction for the three mile walk. We will finish at about 12 o’clock midday.

If you, or someone you know, could benefit from a little help this Christmas, application forms will be available from Cottenham Post Office or online at www. from Monday 25 November and must be returned by Wednesday 11 December. Proof of eligibility will be required and only one application per household will be accepted.


Additionally, applications for grants for essential household or disability items can also be considered by Cottenham Charities throughout the year. To apply please contact Malcolm Dee, Secretary, on 01954 250387. Issue Number 174 • page 2

All are welcome, including dogs and children (under control!!) Vanessa Summerhill

Come and join us on Tuesday 17 December @ The Chequers Pub from 8pm. Enjoy chatting, socialising, and singing some traditional carols with friends.

Key Dates: December 10th Carols on the Green at 6pm. January 25th The annual Scout Jumble sale will be held between 2–4pm at Cottenham Village College.

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED We are seeking volunteers to deliver the Newsletter. Please contact Trevor Lawrence on 01954 250011 if you are able to help.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all of our readers.

OPERATION CHRISTMAS CHILD It was another wonderful year for Operation Christmas Child when more than 520 shoe boxes were packed and sent from Cottenham to needy children in several parts of the world. By the time you read this, they will have been packaged up and on their way towards their destination, where each one will bring delight to a child who may never have received a gift before. The boxes are packed over two days of very hard work which are always great fun with much laughter being shared. It is so rewarding to be able to play a part in supporting this very worthwhile Charity, which does so much good work in a number of ways, one of which is Operation Christmas Child. I am always very grateful for the support and amazing amount of time and help given by so many people, many of whom have been coming and supporting for many years. My sincere thanks to you all and hope to see you again next year. Sue Hooks

ARTICLES, DATES AND ADVERTISEMENTS E–mail, CD, memory stick and paper submissions are all welcome. Please contact the editor if you have any questions. Dates of events to be advertised in the next issue should span the months of February and March.

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CHRISTMAS SERVICES All Saints’ Parish Church Sunday 1st Dec.


Christingle Service. Celebrating Christ’s coming as the Light of the World, followed by Christmas Tree Festival launch

Saturday 14th Dec.


Messy Church Nativity

Sunday 15th Dec.


Blue Christmas Service. For those who want to mark Christmas but in a quiet and reflective way. Carol Service @ All Saints’ Rampton

7:00pm Christmas Eve

5:30pm 11:30pm

Carol Service. A great service of readings and carols, bringing the village of Cottenham together. Midnight Communion. Celebrate the first communion of Christmas Day

Christmas Day

8:30am Service of Communion from the Book of Common Prayer 10:30am Communion service for all the family For further information: Revd Lynda Davies: Matt Unwin-Riches: admin@

Baptist Church Sunday 15th Dec.


Carol Service (with groups for children and young people)

Thursday 19th Dec.

7:00pm 9:00pm

Quiet Space. (The Church will be open for those who wish to have space to reflect, remember those not here this Christmas, and pray.)

Sunday 22nd Dec.


Nativity from scratch. (Come along and join us as we create the nativity from scratch, dress as a character if you would like, or pick up a prop when you arrive and join in the fun.)

Christmas Day 10:30am Christmas Day Family Celebration For more information see, find us on Facebook, or contact the church office on 01954 252378,

Salvation Army Sunday 22nd Dec.


Carol Service

Christmas Eve


Christingle Service

For more information contact Paul Cooper on

Revcoffee at Cottenham Community Centre Sunday 1st Dec.

2:00pm and 7:30pm

Community Cinema Christmas Specials: 2pm ‘Toy Story 4’, and 7:30pm ‘Rocket Man’(with special musical performance beforehand!). See for more information, or to pre-order tickets (also available from the Coffee Shop, or directly from Simon).

Sunday 8th Dec.


Conversation & Contemplation: a chance to explore some of the deeper meaning behind Advent & Christmas through reflection on the theme of ‘Darkness and Light’. Inclusive conversation followed by the chance for stillness and meditation.

Sunday 15th Dec.


The Roost Xmas Brunch & Shadow Puppet Nativity: celebrate Christmas with our very own semi-legendary Shadow Puppet Nativity. Plus a delicious festive brunch with the Sunday papers. No charge but BOOKING ESSENTIAL: E-mail or phone by Wednesday 11 December

For further information or to book places see or contact Simon Oliver on 07554 202929, or via twitter @revcoffeeccc or Facebook revcoffeecottenham

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ELY CONSORT RETURNS TO COTTENHAM Nothing marks the approaching Christmas season better than a performance of Handel’s Messiah. The chamber choir Ely Consort are making a return visit to Cottenham again this year and will be performing highlights from Messiah (including, of course, the Hallelujah Chorus) with a small orchestra and the brilliant soprano soloist Eleanor Bowers-Jolley. The first half will feature seasonal music, including Winter from Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons performed by the outstanding violinist Steve Bingham.

GET INVOLVED WITH CTW IN 2020! Start your New Year off the best way possible by getting involved with local amateur dramatics group Cottenham Theatre Workshop. After recently performing our Christmas Pantomime – Sleeping Beauty – we’re already gearing up for our Spring Production. We’re delighted to announce that, rather appropriately, we’ll be performing ‘A Bunch of Amateurs’ by Nick Newman & Ian Hislop.

The venue is All Saints’ Church, the date for your diary is Saturday 7 December, starting at 7:30pm, and tickets are £15. To obtain tickets in advance, either online at https:// or just telephone 01954 251202. It will be a great way to get into the Christmas season!

This comedy focuses on fading Hollywood action hero Jefferson Steele, who, keen to boost his flagging career, arrives in England to play King Lear in Stratford – only to find that this is not the birthplace of the Bard, but a sleepy Suffolk village! Instead of Kenneth Branagh and Dame Judi Dench, the cast are a bunch of amateurs trying to save their theatre from developers.


Jefferson’s monstrous ego, vanity and insecurity are tested to the limit by the enthusiastic am-dram thespians. As acting worlds collide and Jefferson’s career implodes, he discovers some truths about himself – along with his inner Lear!

December is usually a quiet time in the garden, and the gardening club is no exception! However, we look forward to our traditional New Year Party on Friday 17 January, with its popular quiz, and supper provided jointly by members and the committee. Guests are very welcome at a cost of £4 per head.

If this sounds like something you’d like to be involved with then we’ll be hosting read-throughs and subsequent auditions in the first few weeks of January (dates to be confirmed). We’re always looking for new actors to join our merry troupe so if you’ve always wanted to tread the boards then now is the perfect time to take up this resolution!

Meetings are held at Franklin Gardens Community Room, usually on the last Friday of the month. Refreshments are served from 7:30pm, followed by a talk at 7:45. The evening closes with a raffle, with prizes kindly donated by members.

Keep an eye on our website or our Facebook page for more information about the read-throughs/auditions over the coming weeks. From all at CTW,

Coming soon, the AGM in February will see the unveiling of the new programme, but we also hope to boost the number of committee members, which has dwindled over the last few years. It is not an demanding task, so if anyone thinks they might be willing, please let us know!

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

For further information contact Sarah Dumont Tel: 01954 260482

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DISSENTERS’ CEMETERY You may have noticed that improvements have recently been made at the Dissenters’ Cemetery in Lambs Lane. If you haven’t noticed, or don’t know the cemetery at all, take a wander inside. It’s a village treasure. With the support of a grant for open spaces awarded by the Parish Council, we were able to replace the dilapidated fence with a new oak fence which should last for a good many years. We were also able to clear a patch of ground in the old part of the cemetery which will be used for the interment of ashes. We are very pleased with the outcome and are grateful to the Parish Council for the means to achieve it. Since then we had the gate repainted, the noticeboard refurbished, and the extension on the west side of the cemetery cleared and turfed. This will be used for burials in the foreseeable future and, in due course, the interment of ashes as well. We would point out that this new turf is neither a playground nor a space for dog walking! We are a small group who meet every few months to have clear-up sessions. Offers to help with this are always welcome. Either keep an eye on the noticeboard or contact Philip Saunders (tel: 250421).

BIGMOUTH CHOIR When you open your big mouth to sing, you feel good! You’ve probably heard the rumours: singing is good for you! It can improve posture, lung function, even mental health. Now, you might keep your own voice in reserve for that great solo spot in the bathroom or even a spot of karaoke. However, there’s another rumour: singing with other people is even better for you! Research has shown again and again that social activities, such as singing with a choir, are not only good for you physically, but mentally too. Thankfully, you don’t need to go too far to find the perfect musical workout in Cottenham and the Fen Edge Patch. Cottenham’s own bigMouth choir has been together for thirteen years (lucky for some) and meets every Thursday evening in a wonderful rehearsal space led by Siobhan Lihoreau, the most able and talented choir leader this side of the B1049. I say rehearsal space, it’s a cosy, converted double garage at the back of their house with a piano played by the nimble ivory ticklers of husband Tim. It’s the best place to be from 7:45pm to 9:30pm on a Thursday evening, with the option of a chat and a glass afterwards. The choir may never make it to Carnegie Hall but we have sung at the Royal Albert. We’ve also performed several times at Cambridge’s West Road Concert Hall, the Fen Edge Festival and a lot of other events in and around over the years. We’ve even sung with our sibling choir in Saffron Walden and in France as part of the Fen Edge Twinning Association activities. There are no auditions and you don’t need to be able to read music. Everyone is welcome, nobody is tone-deaf, not everyone is pitch-perfect. Your vocal workout playlist might include everything from Whitacre to Wonder, Rutter to “Rhapsody” and a whole lot in between. bigMouth is the “grownups” section of the bigger TyrannoChorus choir, with TongueTwisters being the junior section and VoxPop the teens. You can find us on Facebook and Twitter: Or, email Siobhan on for more information

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COMMUNITY CINEMA For film lovers, 2019 has been the year of the musical. The resurgence in popularity that began with “La La Land” winning the Best Film Oscar in 2017, and continued with “The Greatest Showman” and “A Star is Born” in 2018, shows no sign of abating. Cottenham Community Cinema has reflected this trend, showing a number of musicals throughout 2019. “Wild Rose” saw Jessie Buckley struggling to bring country music to Glasgow, while “Mary Poppins Returns” had Emily Blunt and Lin-Manuel Miranda singing and dancing their way around old London town. And who could forget March’s packed-out showing of “Bohemian Rhapsody” to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Cottenham Community Centre? Two of our upcoming films are also musicals of one sort or another. The first of December sees the much requested “Rocketman” come to Cottenham Community Cinema. Billed as “based on a true fantasy”, this film is a biopic of the legendary Elton John and his partnership with lyricist Bernie Taupin. Featuring classic songs such as “Tiny Dancer”, “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road”, and the titular “Rocket Man”, this film is sure to get your toes tapping. We’ll also be showing “Toy Story 4” in the afternoon.

Then on 12 January we kick off 2020 in style with “Yesterday”, the film that imagines a world where The Beatles never existed. Written by Richard Curtis and directed by Danny Boyle, this is a romantic comedy with a superlative soundtrack. Keep an eye on our Facebook page (www.facebook. com/CottenhamCommunityCinema/) for more details. We have a bar fully stocked with drinks and popcorn to help you enjoy the show, and at the end there’s usually an opportunity to chat with others about what you thought of the film should you wish (it’s entirely optional though). Hope to see you there! Come and enjoy a fantastic coffee, scone, cake or lunch. Normal Coffee Shop opening times are 10am–4:30pm Monday and Wednesday; 10am–2pm Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday (except around Bank Holidays, Christmas this year 24 Dec to 1 Jan 2020 inclusive). Events Saturday 30 November, 10am – 2pm Christmas market. Sunday 1 December, Cinema 7:30pm Saturday morning 7 December, Singing for Fun in the Coffee shop. Thursday 19 December, 6pm – 9:30pm Mulled wine and Mince pie evening


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Everyone is welcome to attend one of our upcoming meetings. These will be held at Cottenham Village College in the Tony Cooper Suite.

Carols on the Green A quick reminder that our annual Carols on the Green is taking place on Tuesday 10 December. With a BBQ, mulled wine, music from Cottenham Junior Brass and a visit from Father Christmas it’s a great way to kick off the festive season! Please contact us if you’d like to have a stall on the night.

11 December This will be our Christmas Party with entertainment by ‘Hi 5’. As there will be food at this meeting non-members will need to book before the end of November and there will be a small charge. Please ring Margaret 01954 250870. 8 January 2020 Andrew Sankey will be giving a talk about ‘Interesting and historical garden features’. You will be surprised about how long some of our garden features have been around. There will be a charge of £3, towards the speaker for this event, for non-members. 7:15pm for 7:30pm start. Penny Mansfield, Cottenham WI

Neighbourhood Plan At time of writing we are awaiting a report from Independent Examiner. The usual resource prioritisation issue at South Cambridgeshire District Council (SCDC) with Local Plan preparation work is taking precedence so there are some delays. Major Building Developments The unplanned developments continue to need attention, whether ensuring the surface water management is sensible and enduring, checking that the designs are not all bland and out of keeping with the rest of Cottenham, or insisting that as many of the internal roads as possible will be adopted by the County Council. Oakington Road (we have applied for a Local Highways Improvement scheme next year to improve trafficcalming here) • Bellway – all 50 permissions in place; most houses built; pavement and access “bridge” to be completed. Footway design now finalised with County Highways, allowing most work to proceed. Road resurfacing awaiting a closure slot from Highways. • Persimmon – all 121 permissions in place. Initial site preparation works have started. No details currently regarding when roundabout work will start.

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Rampton Road • Redrow – Reserved Matters (RM) application for 199 homes is with SCDC and expected to go to Committee by the end of 2019. • Gladman – (57-place care home) RM application with SCDC and currently awaiting decision. • This-Land – At the time of writing their RM application hasn’t been received but is expected before the end of 2019. Village Hall/Nursery update CPC has now voted in favour of proceeding with the Village Hall & Nursery project. Contract details are being finalised with the contractors. Summaries of the plans are on the CPC website and progress updates will be presented to each monthly Council meeting. Work onsite is expected to begin on 1 December with completion during September 2020. A provisional booking brochure will soon be available. Highways The proposed works for traffic calming on Histon Road, although delayed by Cadent’s extended works, should now be under way or complete. These will improve driver awareness of the need to be mindful of pedestrians by improving road markings and adding a 40mph buffer zone on the approach. We’ve suggested a similar scheme to reposition the 30mph and introduce a 40mph buffer zone with traffic calming signage on Oakington Road once the developments have stabilised next year.

do much for Cottenham residents, we have begun to explore how a Community Transport Service (already part-funded under the Section 106 developer agreements), might fund a shuttle service to and from Waterbeach railway station combined with a faster bus service to Cambridge. If you see any problems, please report them directly to County Highways at: https://highwaysreporting. or by calling 0345 045 5212. To see what roadworks that are being carried out go to Staff news We were all sad to lose Sam’s services as a result of her continued illness and slow recovery. Her energy and enthusiasm, combined with her ‘Blue Peter skills’ really made a difference – thank you, Sam. Office Opening Hours The Parish Office is open every Monday between 9:45am and 12noon. Appointments are available outside of these hours by emailing or phoning – details below. The Clerk is contactable 9:00am – 3:00pm weekdays only and messages can be left outside of these hours. Please note that our staff don’t work on weekends or public holidays. Jo Brook, Parish Clerk Email: Phone: 07503 328401

We have recently completed a traffic survey on the northern end of the High Street to better understand the nature of traffic there and what improvements might be possible. Following the consultation on long term transport plans in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough which does not seem to

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DISTRICT COUNCILLORS’ REPORT Chief Executive On 23 September, SCDC welcomed our new Chief Executive, Liz Watts. We will be organising her to come to visit Cottenham and Rampton in the near future. Histon Road Closure The Greater Cambridge Partnership (GCP) is about to commence work on the Histon Road in Cambridge to improve cycling, walking and bus journeys. We were informed late in the day that this would result in Histon Road being closed inbound to Cambridge for a year or more with traffic and the Citi8 being rerouted. At the GCP Assembly on 12 September, Cllr Wilson spoke about the lack of consultation with residents in Cottenham and Rampton and the potential impact on the operations of the Village College and in particular on students travelling to 6th form colleges by public transportation. We have since held a meeting with the Project Lead, written to the GCP Director of Transport asking for mitigation measures and we attended the GCP Executive Board meeting on 3 October to raise these issues. We were given assurances that the mitigation plans would be reviewed and that re-routing the Citi8 bus along the A14 and Milton Road was not mitigation!! This question is ongoing and we will be providing updates on our Facebook page @ CottenhamRampton and in reports to Parish Councils. Redrow/Gladman/This Land Developments We have submitted comments on the Redrow/Gladman developments along Rampton Road and requested the opportunity to speak at the relevant Planning Committee, not likely to be before November/December. Our comments focused on the layout of the affordable housing

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in the Redrow development and some aspects of the design but we were impressed with the overall scheme. We were far from impressed with the Gladman proposal for the care apartments that would be overbearing in scale to the Redrow development and existing dwellings along Rampton Road. We would really encourage residents to review and let us know if you have views on these plans. We have also held meetings to find out more about the previously approved This Land development on Rampton Road for which full plans will be tabled soon. Oakington Road Footpath Some residents along Oakington Road raised concerns about the width of the proposed footpath from the Rowells down to the mini roundabout. Councillor Wilson organised a site meeting with Bellway and County Highways. Discussions are ongoing but the work to complete the footpath has now been delayed due to other works. The road in front of the Bellway site is also scheduled to be finished but, this too, depends on coordination with roadworks taking place elsewhere in Cottenham and surrounding areas. HGV movements A number of concerns have been raised about an upsurge in HGV movements through Cottenham. We are looking into this with Councillors from neighbouring villages and will be involving all stakeholders to find out why the volume of HGV traffic has apparently increased. There is some concern that the traffic is originating from Northstowe; if so, this is contrary to the traffic management plans that are in place with developers.

Local Plan The Local Plan for Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire will consider how the Greater Cambridge area will develop up until 2040 and beyond – where homes will be built, new jobs located, what education facilities are needed and how people can get around. This process is expected to take around four years, with local people being involved in the critical decisions that are to be made. A report published on 23 September will shape the conversation with communities across the Greater Cambridge area about what the big issues are that need to be addressed and how people can get involved. An Issues and Options consultation on the Local Plan is expected to be launched – at the time of writing – on Monday 25 November. Some of the key themes already emerging include: • Responding to climate change • Increasing biodiversity and green spaces • Promoting wellbeing and equality • Delivering quality places • Jobs and employment • Infrastructure – including transport links, schools, health and utilities • Homes Carols on the Green The event this year will be held on Tuesday 10 December from 6pm. Further details to follow but if you would be interested in having a stall to help enhance the event please contact us. Once again we’d love to hear from anyone who would like to help sponsor the event. All sponsors will be mentioned in publicity materials. We had a fantastic response from companies and residents last year so if you’d like to spread some Christmas cheer please get in touch.

ROTARY CLUB The Rotary Business Forum is a friendly bunch of people with a common interest in business leadership and management, but equally determined to help each other and those less fortunate than ourselves. We meet alternate Friday mornings over breakfast at Waterbeach. See or call Nick Hadley on 07984 388093. Also please see the website if you would like to know more about Rotary – whose motto is “Service above Self” and main worldwide aim to eradicate Polio world-wide within the next few years. Our club meets on Mondays (except bank holidays) at 5:45pm for 6.15pm at the Arundel Hotel Cambridge with great speakers. New potential members are very welcome. More volunteers are needed for charity car parking – if you could spare a few hours and would like to help at Christmas 2019 (weekends 23 November to 21/22 December and then 27 – 30 December) please contact me at Please also look for the Rotary signs on Lensfield Road and Tennis court road etc if you are parking in Cambridge on those days – just £7 and it all goes for Charitable good causes. Mike Smith, Rotary Club of Cambridge South

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VILLAGE HALL PLAN Summary About four years after a Working Party was set up to identify a solution to our ageing, inaccessible and inefficient Village Hall, the Parish Council has approved a plan to replace it and build a new Early Years Nursery too. To be built on either end of the Ladybird Pre-School, which will stay, work will start on the new buildings in December with completion expected next September. The project will be funded from Council reserves, the ongoing £1/week/ Band D precept and s106 developer contributions from the new houses being built on Oakington and Rampton Roads and those already built on Racecourse View. Background & Current Position The current Village Hall plans are the result of a Value Engineering round to reduce costs after the competitive tenders all came in too high for us to afford. Although a little smaller, the Hall design is very similar to the plans we discussed in late 2018. A sizeable Lobby / Reception area provides separate access routes to the Parish Council Office, Hall and Club space with stairs and lift access to the First Floor. The First Floor is a fully-flexible open plan space with a bar and balcony with views over the playing fields to the fen-edge sunsets. To be built on the site of the existing Hall, the Ground Floor has space for a Hall of similar size to today’s main hall. It is extendable to include a bar space that can be operated independently as a Club space. With dedicated storage spaces, the hall can support a number of regular users on a pack-away basis and be available for casual hire. A portakabin alongside the Sports Pavilion will allow Kids Club to operate throughout the works. Parish Council meetings will also be held in the Sports Pavilion.

With permission to be open all year round from 7:30am to 6:30pm plus Saturday mornings, the Nursery should provide a much needed support service in the village for working families with young children.

Pre-School space • Capacity for 24 x 4-5 year olds. Toddler space • Capacity for 10 x 2-3 year olds. Baby space • Capacity for 11 x 0-2 year olds. • Milk kitchen, sleeping area, laundry

Staff space • Staff-room • Manager office • Kitchen / pantry Operation • Initial licence to be offered to Trustees of the LB Pre-School • (subject to satisfactory Business Plan and Ofsted approval) • The Ladybird Pre-School will continue separately throughout the works and afterwards alongside the Nursery.

As part of the project, there will be improvements to the access road and car park, including more public charging points for electric vehicles. To minimise disruption during the works, we will have a portakabin alongside the Pavilion Club Room. The car parks will be subjected to several changes and seriously disrupted during the works and, although some parking will be maintained, it is unlikely that the Kebab van will be able to operate safely on the site. Costing up to approximately £4 million plus loan interest, the project will be financed: • £400K+ from CPC reserves • Supplemented by £2.8 million loan (funded by the “£1/week/Band D equivalent” precept) • Offset by up to £600K s106 “Indoor Facility” and around £900K “Early Years” contributions. CPC has delegated authority to finalise contracts and project oversight to: a) Chair, Clerk and RFO (“the Client”) working with: Wilby & Burnett (Architect, Contract Document Management and Quantity Surveyor), Cambridge Van Leyden (M&E engineering consultants), Peter Dann (Structural Engineering Consultant) and SEH French (construction) b) with monthly progress updates to Council. Brochures will soon be available for provisional availability from October 2020. If you would like to have your name added to a brick, visible forever on an outside wall, contact CPC.

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COUNTY COUNCILLOR’S REPORT Northstowe’s latest VIP visitor Esther McVey, a fellow Scouser, the ninth Housing (and Planning) Minister since 2010, beat a path to my door – at least to open new regional headquarters for Homes England at Northstowe. She sounded impressed with what she saw, struck particularly by the price comparison of new houses between Northstowe and Cambridge. She also praised us for getting over 2,000 units of affordable housing (more than 40%) among the first 5,000 houses at the new town. “Yes, Minister.” (I’ve always wanted to say that!) Senior officials told me that our experience in granting planning permission at Northstowe had influenced national government policy – heartening to hear given how much sleep I lost over it. Three Rivers Webb’s Hole Sluice, a control structure at the confluence of Swavesey Drain and the Great Ouse, near the former ferry at Overcote, not far upstream from tidal reach at Brownshill Staunch, prevents water backing up Swavesey Drain when the Great Ouse rises. Foul water from Cambourne and Northstowe is treated at Uttons Drove, and effluent flows down to Webb’s Hole. Swavesey Internal Drainage Board has been pressing for Mare Fen flood banks to be reinforced. The cost, just over £750,000, is being met by Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority. The apparent deterioration of the Cottenham Lode flood banks has long been a concern to Rampton and Cottenham, ever since the most recent breaches in 2001. Given Cottenham Lode is the principal conduit into the Great Ouse for a very large catchment (including Girton,

Oakington and Bar Hill), there has been widespread anxiety whether Cottenham Lode itself is up to the standard of protection to which Northstowe (most of which drains, via Reynolds Drain, into Cottenham Lode) is being built. Homes England will be excavating balancing ponds on Oakington Brook along Dry Drayton Road, reducing flood risk to Oakington and downstream. In addition, the Environment Agency is assessing the best way to stabilise the Cottenham Lode flood banks. According to the Environment Agency: “The River Cam catchment received only 70% of the long-term average rainfall between May 2018 and May 2019, which has largely contributed to the current low flow levels. We are working with water companies to protect water levels by limiting abstraction quantities. We will continue to monitor conditions in the Cam catchment alongside carrying out a number of river restoration projects, and we are ready to respond to incidents caused by low water levels, including by rescuing fish in distress or oxygenating the water to help them.” Butt Lane Residents of Cambridgeshire taking a van or trailer to a Household Recycling Centre now need an e-permit, obtained using the online system beforehand. These e-permits will be limited to twelve visits per year. To allow larger household and gardening jobs, there will be an exemption to the scheme for trailers up to 1.5m (5ft) long (excluding the towing mechanism) and 570 litre capacity. Continued on next page

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Continued from previous page Roads and Traffic Highways Service Annual Review: The partnership between Cambridgeshire County Council and Skanska maintains 2,800 miles of roads, 1,900 miles of footways, 1,500 road bridges and 2,500 other bridges. Purchase of two additional pothole repair vehicles (dragon patchers), has more than halved the cost of traditional methods. Almost half the 58,300 repairs in 2018-2019 were done this way, saving £740,000 and prolonging road surfaces. Higher quality pothole repairs include over-banding to seal the patch. This now comes in a strip with entrained aggregate to provide skid resistance. Traffic signals in quick succession can be coordinated by progressing platoons of traffic in smooth flows. Merely fixing inbound signals green in the morning and outbound signals green in the evening, however, will not solve congestion in and around Cambridge. From 1996 to 2014 morning and evening peaks were fairly steady, but over the following three years expanded about 10%. Comparing 2018 with 2000, morning and evening peaks have spread from 1.5 hours to 2 hours. Is this active or passive? (ie Are people deliberately setting off earlier, or are journeys just taking longer?) To manage peak spreading effectively would mean making the morning peak 3 – 3.5 hours’ long and the evening peak 4 – 4.5 hours’ long. In effect, ten hours between 7am and 7pm would become peak and shoulder times. The Greater Cambridge Partnership Citizens’ Assembly recommended reallocation of road space both for tackling congestion and for improving air quality. Only when specifically asked how best to raise revenue for subsidising improved public transport did they opt for any form of road

Issue Number 174 • page 14

pricing. This seems to confirm that, while London has had a congestion charge since 2003 and an Ultra Low Emission Zone from April this year, the Greater Cambridge Travel to Work area is not yet ready to accept congestion charging or pollution charging. Plenty of material, including videos of the four days’ proceedings, can be found here: greater-cambridge-citizens-assembly Planning and Housing Public consultation on Issues and Options for the next joint Local Plan for Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire will be opening shortly. Recent fast jobs growth would require around 66,700 new homes from 2017 to 2040. 36,400 are already scheduled before 2040, with another 9,700 allocated on major sites beyond 2040 but could be built earlier. There could be 8,000 at Cambridge North East (around Cambridge North railway station) and 12,000 at Cambridge East (on the land to be vacated by Marshalls airport). The latest National Planning Policy Framework requires 10% of housing to be allocated to sites smaller than one hectare, which will mean some development in villages. I am the county council member of the Greater Cambridge Joint Local Planning Advisory Group. As I promised during controversy surrounding development of the block of land between Oakington Road and Rampton Road, I will be arguing strongly that Cottenham, now one of the five rural centres (along with Cambourne, Great Shelford and Stapleford, Histon & Impington, and Sawston) which would be the first places to be looked at for further development, has already met its own assessed housing need for this period. Tim Wotherspoon


Individual lessons by arrangement – Thursdays 7-9pm Adult beginners – Saturdays 9-10am Age 4-6 (Tennis for Kids) – Saturdays 10:15-11:15am Adult intermediate/team training – Saturdays 11:30am-12:30pm Tennis is a game for everyone, is great for mind and body and can be played from age 3 to age 90. The youngest kids learn in sessions full of fun games and exercises with soft balls, learning about agility, balance and coordination so that they can hold the racket and strike the ball. Modern coaching techniques mean that everyone will be able to hit the ball! We will soon have an additional three Level 1 qualified coaches from our club membership who will be assisting when possible at these sessions.

Alec Davis coaching with the Cottenham juniors, October 2019 What a good summer it has been for Cottenham Tennis Club. We have been so lucky with the weather and have been able to play on nearly every club session. Grass courts The 2 grass courts at the recreation ground have proved to be extremely popular now that they are being maintained. It was great to see people playing on them throughout the summer. A huge thank you to the groundsman for all his hard work. They are now closed for the winter and are having their top-dressing in preparation for next spring. These are public courts and free to use. They are maintained by the Parish Council and Cottenham Tennis Club is working with the Parish Council to ensure that they are fit for use by the local community. When they reopen in May the padlock code can be obtained from The Parish Clerk on 07503 328401 or, Mon – Fri 9am to 2:30pm. Coaching for all ages and abilities We have had a change in our coaching regime since mid October. We have great hopes that Toby, the force behind “Game Set Tennis” and winner of the Cambs LTA coach of the year for 2018, and Alastair who will be the main coach at Cottenham, will bring a renewed vigour to our children and adult coaching sessions. Sessions are as follows all year during term time and can be booked on Details are also on our website Breakfast club at Cottenham Primary School (yrs 1-6) – Tuesdays 8-8:45am Age 7-11 (orange ball) – Thursdays 5-6pm Age 12+ (yellow ball) – Thursdays 6-7pm


We have been very grateful to our two junior coaches, Alec Davis and Rory Dixon, who kept our “rusty rackets” sessions and Thursday kid’s coaching going this year. They are both great coaches in spite of their youth! We wish Alec well for his Gap Year travelling and Rory with his return to Uni. I’m sure they will be back and once again contributing to the club in due course. Thanks also to the Fen Edge Community Association for supporting these coaching sessions. Job opportunities & youth training As our coaching groups grow we will be looking for anyone age 13-16 years old, preferably someone who can play a bit of tennis but it could be someone looking for experience in sport science, childcare or teaching, who would like to assist our coach deliver sessions to the younger age groups, age 3-6 and 7-11. This would be paid work at £5 an hour. At the time of going to press this would be on Thursdays 5-6pm or on Saturdays at 10am. Please contact for more information. Anyone age 16+ with some ability for tennis can take their Level 1, and can apply for funding for this from Cambridge LTA in exchange for volunteering at some of their regional events. For teens this can be a good way of earning pocket money and getting a useful qualification. See the LTA website for further details. Continued on next page Letters for publication may be sent to the Editor, and should include the name and address of the sender, although this may be omitted from publication if requested. Please keep correspondence short and topical. Please note that the Editor may use his discretion regarding publication, and his decision is final. The views expressed by correspondents and other contributors are their own and are not necessarily shared by the Editor.

ADVERTISING To discuss your advertising requirements Contact Liz Porteous on 01954 250468 Artwork, if required, is charged separately, minimum £5.00. depending on the amount of work involved. Quotations are available on request

Issue Number 174 • page 15

Continued from previous page Membership As to the year that has gone I am pleased to report an increase in the number of members and a healthy turn out for our social evenings on Wednesday and Thursdays at Cottenham Sports Centre. Gone are the days of turning up to find no-one there, and our new members have been given a warm welcome and have occasionally been bought a pint at our “clubhouse”, the Chequers! We have introduced a reduced membership fee if you only want to do coaching. Please contact Cottenham Sports Centre for more information or see our website www. Other activities We held a “Play tennis for free” day at the recreation ground in the late spring, sponsored by Nature Valley supporting the LTA. There was an excellent turn out and 45 children and a smattering of adults benefited from free coaching whilst I made the teas for the observers. Many thanks to the Parish Council for supporting the tennis club with the use of the pavilion facilities. We hope to run these next year from May onwards so keep an eye on our Facebook page. Club socials At the start of September we celebrated an excellent summer of tennis with a club barbecue at Cottenham sports centre, so thank you to the team there for the use of the facilities and for closing off the car park for us. As the winter draws on we will soon be planning the tennis club Christmas curry at the Curry Palace, who have been so generous with donations for our tombola at the Fun Run, as have other businesses in the village. Match results Competitively the men’s team have continued their successful run with wins over nearly all their opponents, losing only one match, to Chatteris men’s firsts. They came top of the Cambridge League’s men’s division 7 and will go up to division 6 next summer. The mixed and ladies team continue to enjoy playing other teams with


Issue Number 174 • page 16

less sparkling results, the ladies winning 3 out 8 matches and coming fifth in their division, whilst the mixed team only managed to draw one of their matches, and lost the rest. Nevertheless it is a good experience to play other teams and to visit the great facilities at such places as Cambridge, Chatteris and Shelford. We can only look at their courts and clubhouses with envy! Funding We were very lucky to receive a generous donation from the Fen Edge Community Association, thanks to the success of the Fen Edge Festival this summer. This has enabled us to purchase a new ball machine which all club members can use for free. This was part-funded by the LTA and we are very grateful as this is a really useful piece of equipment for practice and training. As we visit different teams around the region we are constantly impressed by their excellent facilities, and we will keep working with our partners, the Sports Centre and the Parish Council to get our facilities up to scratch. Our level 1 coaching courses will be funded by the LTA in exchange for some time volunteering at their regional events. This is giving us better insight into the various sources of funding and we are planning grant applications to support buying new kit, and, who knows, our own courts and clubhouse one day. Come and join us? If you have played tennis in the past and would like to rekindle your love of the game please come and join us at a Wednesday social evening; or watch out for information about coaching, tennis for free and other opportunities in the village. We will post these on our website and on the Cottenham facebook page. We are always looking for more team members of any age, ladies and men, and possibly veterans, for social or competitive games, so do get in touch if you are interested. Look forward to seeing you on the courts. Cilla Hughes Publicity Officer Cottenham Tennis Club

Readers are invited to send in either original poetry or short stories for inclusion in the Cottenham Newsletter. Short stories should be no longer than 600 words. The objective should be to entertain the general readership – go on, have a go!

Small ads: HALO HEATING SERVICE LTD We aim to provide the most ethical, sustainable and cost effective heating and plumbing service to Cottenham and the surrounding area, whilst maintaining the highest standards and exceptional customer service. Please call Sam on 07745 551588, email: or find us on Facebook ......... TUITION. ENGLISH AS A FOREIGN LANGUAGE (EFL). Teresa Haymer Cert Ed TEFL MA – General English, all levels, Business English, other ESPs; Homestay Immersion Courses. Email: or text to: 07410 978290 ......... HANDYMAN SERVICES COTTENHAM Need help fitting a kitchen or bathroom? Leaking washing machine, sink or shower? Need a blind fitted or guttering repaired? Call Mike on 07768 931810 ......... VIDEO TO DVD TRANSFER SERVICE Preserve your precious memories with Cottenham Video. We cater for all types of video tape Cottenham Video – We can transfer your old VHS and camcorder video tapes to DVD or digital file. Audio cassette and cine film also catered for. Tel: 01954 775004 or Mobile: 07795 630037,, ......... GUITAR TONE WORKSHOP Are you interested in meeting local musicians and sharing tips on achieving that perfect tone. The idea would be to bring your guitar(s), amp(s) and pedals so that we can try out each others gear and help decide if it’s worth buying one for yourself. The workshop would be especially helpful to someone starting out – all ages welcome. Please spread the word. I was thinking about holding the event at All Saints’ Church hall as they have some separate rooms, or perhaps CVC?? If you’re interested then drop an email to alistair.brown@yahoo. or Tel: 07871 315396 ......... TOAT – “TOM OF ALL TRADES” Tom Wykes Handyman. No job is too big or too small – garden/house clearance, shelving, plumbing and so on – call Tom for a quote on 01954 250324, 07762 559259 ......... FRESH GRIMSBY FISH Fresh and smoked fish, shellfish in Cottenham every Thursday morning. Est. since 1989. Call John on 07584 578315 to arrange a call to your office or home. No order too small. ......... HOUSE/PET SITTER, fully insured and CRB checked. Tailor made service having your pets looked after in their own home with anything from daily visits to living–in, assuring security. This is a reliable/discreet/confidential business with visits in an unmarked vehicle. Excellent references. Email: ginnyr38@gmail. com Tel: 01223 232972 or 07980 042601 ......... C HILSDEN DECORATING SERVICES all aspects of painting and decorating, tiling and home maintenance carried out to the highest standard. Free estimates and excellent rates. Carl Hilsden – Mobile: 07590 517882 Home telephone 01954 250446 ......... FURNITURE POLISHING AND REPAIR Polishing and restoration of antique (and not so antique) furniture by a local Cottenham restorer. Rob Ellis: 01954 250153 ......... R J BENSON CARPENTRY Local fully qualified reliable carpenter. Please call 07961811454 or email robbenson15@ for advice/free quotes.

FENCING – P MARTIN FENCING, all types of fencing undertaken, over 30 years trading, please call 07802 440494 or 01954 250568 email for a free no obligation quote and advice. ......... PEAT’S GARDEN SERVICES Lawn and hedge cutting, pruning, planting, rotovating, turfing, weekly and monthly visits, all garden work undertaken. All garden waste removed. For a free estimate call Pete Bullen 01954 250771 or 07749 863047 ......... CHIROPODIST/PODIATRIST Henry Tullie. Degree qualified home visiting chiropody service for the treatment of nail cutting, hard skin, corns and callus. Tel 01223 277834/07906 625088, ........ ANTIQUE, MODERN & BESPOKE UPHOLSTERY using traditional materials and techniques. Based in Cottenham, Victoria Morris Upholstery offers a professional (AMUSF Qualified) and reliable upholstery service for your most treasured antiques or favourite chair. For all enquires and/or a free consultation, contact Victoria on 01954 270050 or 07547 496931 or by email: or visit www. ......... DOG DAY CARE IN COTTENHAM. Open Mon – Fri, 8am to 6pm. Great area for hour walks on our 150+ acre farm and 100% attention all day at home and in our enclosed garden all for £15.00 a day. Lingwood Farm, Cottenham, CB24 8PX Tel: Erica 07956 406643 or visit ......... AGRIPEST If you’re looking for a friendly, reliable and competitive pest control service then please get in contact with AgriPest today! Rats, mice, wasps, moles and much more! Please call Neil on 07889 018041 or email Thank you. ......... THE VILLAGE FOOT CLINIC Wilburton Clinic & mobile chiropody for: nail cutting/nail thickness reduction, corns, callous and cracked heels, diabetes etc. Assessment and treatment £29. Marisa Jolley MCFHP MAFHP. Tel: 07909 943171 ......... Why not advertise in the Newsletter! Items for sale, announcement of family events, local products and/or services... 10p per word, with some proceeds going to the MAGPAS charity. Send advertisements and payment to the Advertising Manager. Cheques should be made out to ‘Cottenham Newsletter’.

Issue Number 174 • page 17


Parish Council Jo Brook, Clerk 07503 328401

Police General Switchboard Doctors


Dr. T Blumenfeld, 188 High Street Firs House Partnership, 42 Telegraph Street

Urgent Care Cambridge (formerly Camdoc)

District Nurse Team Cottenham CareCar

250079 251180 0330 123 9131 01223 726469

Co–ordinator, 10:00am – 4:00pm, Gerry Brett


Cottenham Community Centre 202109 Cottenham Charities 250387 Cottenham Day Centre 200873 Cottenham Gardeners Club 260482 Cottenham Tennis Club Cottenham Toy Library Christina Koester 270334 Cottenham Village Society Glynis Pilbeam 251544 Cottenham WI Gillian Ballard 250605 Dentist Wiese and Associates, 40 Margett Street 251696 Chemist 222 High Street 250556

Child, Teen & Family Counselling

Julie McCrae 07482 723265 Counsellor & Therapist Ruth Barnett, 202556, 07961 644006 Samaritans Cambridge Centre 01223 364455 Veterinary Surgeon Village Vet Cottenham 252122


Cottenham Village College and Community Office County Primary, Lambs Lane Under–Ones Baptist Church


288944 250227 251066

Ladybirds Pre–School, Recreation Ground 250891 Kids Only (Out of School Club) 250025 Ballet School or 200533 Brownies 1st Cottenham Lisa Nicoll 201575 2nd Cottenham Julie Percival 200854 3rd Cottenham Chris Hurworth 203764 Guides Deanna 250388 Scouts Newsagents Shaun’s News 250398

Council Offices

County Council Switchboard SCDC Switchboard

0345 045 5222 0345 045 0500

District Councillors Neil Gough Eileen Wilson, 07919 990299, 07825 770899

County Councillor Tim Wotherspoon,252108 01223 301426

British Red Cross Shop Citizens Advice Bureau

66 Devonshire Road, Cambridge, CB1 3BL 0844 848 7979 Social Services Histon Team 01223 718011 Mobile Warden Scheme 200080 NSPCC Cottenham Area Team 01733 558245 RSPCA 24 hour cruelty & advice line 0300 1234 999

Railway Station Cambridge Passenger Enquiries

0845 7484950

Driving Instruction TOPS Driving School 252239 Taxi Panther Taxis 01223 715715/424424/523523 Library Margett Street 0345 0455225 Library at Home Service (formerly Doorstep)

0345 045 5225 583651 252298 Office hours: 9:30am-2:30pm Wednesday and Friday Baptist Church Church Office 252378 Catholic Church St Laurences Church 01223 704640 Methodist Church 07554 202929 Salvation Army Paul Cooper, Captain 252419 Royal British Legion Ann Scott 251468 Cottenham Brass Band Diana Braverman (Sec.) Bridge Farm Riding School 252284 Allotments Cottenham Charities 250575 Sustainable Cottenham Christine Ward 251813

Parish Church Revd. Lynda Davies Parish Administrator Matt Unwin-Riches

Cottenham Dissenters’ Cemetery

Kate Lees 252378, Sarah Berenger 07484 221369,


Adrian Ient, 2 The Wrens, Cottenham CB24 8XD. Tel: 01954 775004 e–mail:


Peter Robertson, 30 Lyles Road, Cottenham, Tel: 01954 200080

ADVERTISING MANAGER: Liz Porteous, e–mail: Tel: 01954 250468 WEBSITE:

Issue Number 174 • page 18

CRICKET CLUB NEWS Well, what a brilliant summer of cricket that was! First we had the one-day World Cup in this country ending with a first ever win for England in an unforgettably exciting final against New Zealand at Lords. And, if that wasn’t enough, we then had a gripping Ashes series which ended 2-2, not quite enough for England to regain the urn but one which produced some really good cricket and unearthed a terrific new fast bowling talent in Jofra Archer. I can only hope that lots of youngsters were enthused by all of this and encouraged to have a go at our fabulous sport. My only gripe would be that not enough of it was available on terrestrial TV but that has been a bone of contention for some time now. As far as Cottenham CC was concerned, the season did not go quite so well. Our 1st XI found the return to Senior League cricket really tough going and we will now have to regroup and come again in Junior 1. Our 2nds finished mid-table in their League but did the Club proud in reaching the CCA Lower Junior Cup Finals Day, losing in the first semi-final to Comberton 1st team. Played in a 20/20 format, we let our opponents get rather too many runs and, despite a spirited batting effort, we came up short. A classy 79 not out from Tom Colquhoun and a fine 36 from one of our u-15s, Jack Wilkinson, got us off to a great start but the asking rate proved just too high. Our two skippers, Jake Raven (1st XI) and Alan Raven (2nd XI) are both standing down this year after several years in

BOWLS CLUB Another enjoyable outdoor bowls season has drawn to an end. Our bowls teams have had mixed fortunes as the results show. The results are as follows: Ely & District Division 1, Team A 3rd of 12. Ely & District Division 1, Team B 2nd from the bottom and demoted to Division 2. County Triples, top of Division 2 so promoted to Division 1. C & D Team A, Division 2, top so promoted to Division 1. C & D Division 3, 9th out of 10 so demoted to Division 4. Business House Mixed, bottom of Division 1 so demoted to Division 2. Cottenham Team A are also Champion of Champions. Well done to all the Team Captains and players who contribute so much to Cottenham Bowls Club. The indoor short mat is well under way. It is a great way to spend the winter afternoons. If you are interested you can contact Eric Hobbs on 01954 251956. There is a membership fee of £15.00 and 50p for tea and biscuits. Cottenham Bowls Club is a very friendly club with members from Cottenham and surrounding villages so come and give us a try. Everyone is welcome. Contacts: Dave Parrack 01954 230732; Eric Hobbs 01954 251956; Chris Forster 01954 200720 Cottenham-bowls-club-8286/

their jobs. We owe them both a huge debt of gratitude. So both our men’s teams will have fresh leadership next season as we look to get our 1st XI back to Senior level and consolidate the development of our 2nds. As ever, we are always on the lookout for players who want to join us in our efforts to progress the Club, especially those living in the village. Please remember this is your Club and those of us currently responsible for its well-being are determined to see it continue to thrive for you, your children and their children, just as it has for so many generations over the last 167 years. Finally, a few more thank yous! To all our Committee members for their hard work throughout the year; to all those parents and coaches who helped in the running of our Junior teams (u-13 and u-15 this year) – they just couldn’t operate without their efforts; to our loyal and generous sponsors, Nigel Bolitho’s BV Services, Gerard Bate’s Quadraproof and Kosru Miah at the Curry Palace. Thanks, also, to the Parish Council and to groundsman Andrew King and his team for their continued support. Indoor net practice will be starting in the New Year so please keep an eye on the Club News section of our website for details – 2020 is just around the corner! Club Contacts: Email: Secretary: David Chaplin (01954 250075) Chairman: Ralph Lamble (07740 195947) Vice Chairman: Dave Partridge (01954 203210) Junior Teams Coordinators: Dave Partridge and Alan Raven (01954 250388) Website: Twitter: @CottenhamCrickt Dave Partridge

COTTENHAM UNITED FC This season we are running two adult men’s teams, a 1st team in the Kershaw Senior A League and a Reserve side in Div 3A of the Mead Plant & Grab League. The 1st team is under new management this season, Chris Hancock and Carl Thurlbourne having taken the reins in the summer. The team itself has also seen a bit of a makeover in personnel and has started the season encouragingly well. Our Reserves still have Luke Cox and Martin Carter at the helm and have made a steady start themselves. We feel the Club is in a very good place at the moment and we are keen to keep everything moving forward positively. We are also very pleased to announce that our Reserves home fixture with Oakington Vikings on 14 December will be played in memory of a friend of both Clubs, Peter ‘Nobby’ Knowles. In addition to the League points, we will contest the first ever Nobby Knowles Memorial Cup and be fundraising for the Papyrus charity. The match kicks off at 2pm and will be preceded by a 1st team game at midday. There will be hot food, drinks, raffle prizes etc and we would like as many people as possible to come along and make this a really successful inaugural event. You can Issue Number 174 • page 19

find out everything that’s going on by following our social media pages on Facebook (Cottenham United Football Club) and Twitter (@cottenham_fc). Training sessions for both our squads take place weekly on the all-weather surface at the rear of Cottenham Village College on Wednesday evenings, 7:30-9pm. All are welcome and you can be assured of a very friendly reception so please do come along if you are interested

NATURE REPORT Many people are well aware that the British Isles welcomes a lot of summer visitors – the cuckoos, swifts, swallows, house martins, and many other migratory species that head north in the spring from their season in the sub-Saharan sun. But, there are also visitors in the winter, birds that head south from the cold to catch a little of the warmth of the Gulf Stream. As far as we know many birds adopted migratory behaviour in response to the Ice Age and having evolved to cope with that are locked into that pattern, at least until climate changes in a significant way once more. I wrote about a winter visitor that reaches our shores some time ago in this newsletter – the starlings. While we have lots of starlings all year round, those vast flocks we know as murmurations occur when the starling forces are bolstered by visitors. If you head out to the local nature reserves and even just the outskirts of the villages you are likely to see many other visitors among the flocks of gulls and crows, for instance. Among the grey and white clouds of the more well-known gulls, there might be something a little less common, an ivory gull for instance or perhaps even a glaucous gull and we did have a hooded crow on the outskirts of Cottenham last year. Among the other winter visitors that turn up in greater numbers are a couple of thrush-type species, related to the blackbird and the song thrush, namely the fieldfare and the redwing.

in playing. If you’re new to the village and looking for a chance to play closer to home or, indeed, already living here and wanting to get started again, please just contact the Club by emailing Club Website: Dave Partridge Both species will make a winter home on farmland and use the hedgerows and bordering trees and woodland. Both eat a lot of berries and will attempt to out-compete the resident blackbirds and thrushes for supplies, should the weather turn foul. When we had the so-called “Beast from the East” these birds headed for the relative shelter of our gardens and began stripping firethorn and rowan trees of any remaining berries. A good reason not to be too tidy in pruning back your bushes in the autumn. Incidentally, there were still fieldfares to be seen in the trees that border the allotments and the recreation ground as recently as April, despite most winter visitors having departed for their northern summer homes. Of course, having some vast wet spaces and in being so close to Norfolk, we have plenty of waterfowl visitors in winter – geese, ducks, swans. These head south from Scandinavia and elsewhere to take advantage of the relative warmth here when the chills really do set in up north. Many readers will no doubt have visited WWT Welney to see the large numbers of Whooper and Bewick’s swans and other waterfowl that arrive each autumn there. Among the less common birds you might see around the village and in local woodland, that turn up for the winter, are goldcrests. This species holds joint first place with the firecrest as our smallest bird species, far smaller than the resident wren, which is our most common resident. That said, you can see goldcrests and firecrests at any time of year. Another relative rarity to watch out for, especially around trading estates and supermarket car parks where there are often lots of berry-laden trees is the waxwing. This elegant and bohemian species spends the summer in the far north, but is peripatetic, rather than migratory, in the winter, and often turns up unannounced in large flocks to those berry-rich sites when food is short in the north. Watch out for huddles of people in olive green and beige with thinly insulated hats hanging around The Beehive Centre or the guided busway parking areas with binoculars and ‘scopes pointing them hopefully at rowan trees and the like and you might just spot an elegant visitor. David Bradley



If you have seen any interesting natural happenings in and around the village do let me know, email Photos and additional nature reporting on my website

on social media


Adrian Ient, 2 The Wrens, Cottenham CB24 8XD. Tel: 01954 - 775004 e-mail:

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Cottenham Newsletter issue 174 December 2019 to January 2020  

Cottenham Newsletter issue 174 December 2019 to January 2020