Susan van de Ven

Liberal Democrat County Councillor for Bassingbourn, Melbourn, Meldreth and Whaddon Learn more

Thakeham – South West Cambridge Update

by Susan van de Ven on 12 February, 2022

On February 3rd, we invited parish council representatives for villages within Thakeham’s ‘South West Cambridge’ new town area – including Wimpole, Barrington, Orwell, Shepreth, Foxton, Melbourn, Meldreth, Whaddon and Bassingbourn-cum-Kneesworth – to meet with Stephen Kelly, Director of Greater Cambridge Shared Planning, for an update on the OxCam Arc, the Greater Cambridge Local Plan and Thakeham’s new town proposal.

It seems that following an extremely busy period and much investment around strategic planning over a period of several years, OxCam Arc activity has slowed down considerably. 

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government under Robert Jenrick MP is now The Department of Levelling Up, Housing and Communities under Michael Gove MP.

The Greater Cambridge Local Plan First Proposals were published for consultation last November. They are based on a comprehensive base of evidence and underpinned by principles of sustainable development.  First Proposal sites do not include any development land for Thakeham’s new town. 

Thakeham has to date submitted nothing to the Greater Cambridge Local Planning process.

Mr Kelly indicated that parish councils would be invited to an informal meeting with Greater Cambridge Shared Planning, for an update and discussion on planning issues generally.

The Electoral Commission website lists no further donations from Thakeham to the Conservative Party since April 2021 – that donation of £100k was listed on the Electoral Commission website in October (total standing at around £636,000).

Thakeham continues to have options on a number of parcels of land within its area of new town ambition.  Information is in the public domain and available via the Land Registry.

Thakeham’s website continues to display its South West Cambridge new town vision in some detail, naming the villages encompassed within it.

Thakeham’s contact phone number for further information about South West Cambridge takes the caller to a recorded message:

‘The number you are calling is not in service at this time. Thank you for calling. Goodbye.’

We are mindful that Thakeham has made a considerable financial investment toward its South West Cambridge ambition and will therefore keep a watching brief.

Cllrs Susan van de Ven, Peter McDonald, Sebastian Kindersley, Jose Hales and Aidan Van de Weyer, for the South West Cambridge Action Group

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