Susan van de Ven

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

Community Newsletter

by Susan van de Ven on 4 March, 2024

Meldreth and Melbourn Road Repairs

A long and painful wait, but two key repair works are now in the Highways schedule:

Meldreth High Street to receive a comprehensive surface repair, designed for roads where historic trench work has caused break-up, on its entire length from the Stocks to Station Road. Advance notice signage is now up as the road will need to be closed during works.  Residents can be assured that they will have access to their properties throughout, though there may be some inconvenience and short waiting.  Work will take place during school time, so the school run will not be encumbered.

Melbourn Station Road – That Awful Stretch – is to be properly repaired this spring, with permissions now being processed. Advance notice signage will be positioned beforehand, again as road closure will be required to do the job.

Thanks to the Cambridgeshire County Council Highways team who carry a massive load, and to residents for continuing to report on the Highways system, and for their patience, all in difficult times.

Kneesworth double roundabouts – road markings

A long and painful wait here too.  This work has been funded to take place before the end of the financial year – by March 31st

Park Close Bassingbourn parking

Park Close Residents without private drives often struggle to find a parking place.  South Cambs District Council will shortly be creating some additional marked bays at the back of the close near the woods abutting the allotments.  General signage will be provided to indicate that this is intended for Park Close residents.

Off-road path, Melbourn-Meldreth Station

We hope to be seeing work on this path beginning in March/April.  There will need to be a diversion to Meldreth Station via Station Road.  We are working with the County Council team on getting support for crossing points along the diversion route.

A10 off-road path maintenance

Thanks to a communities grant from Bruntwood Sci Tech to the A10 Corridor Cycling Campaign, which was able to engage a grounds maintenance contractor, it has been possible to bring the off-road path to Cambridge to a high standard of maintenance.

A10 campaign AGM March 18th, 7:30-8:30PM

The A10 Corridor Cycling Campaign will be meeting in person for its AGM and to hear updates on the Melbourn Greenway – improvements to the evolving network of off-road cycle/walk/scooter paths along the A10 corridor.

TTP at Melbourn Science Park is kindly hosting the meeting – all welcome.  Please contact any of us if you’d like to attend and would like further details.

Royston Bus meeting March 12th

Susan and James will be contributing to this meeting convened by North Herts District Council, looking at services in the Royston area, in order to bring attention to the 17 and 26 services which are so vital for our villages.  Please get in touch if you have any particular points you’d like her to bring on your behalf.

Anglian Water: foul water back-up problems

As we do every year, we will be meeting Anglian Water on March 18th, in order to discuss issues of concern in the area.  This year’s conversation will be dominated by the significant ongoing foul water back-up issues in some properties, following heavy rainfall events.  Sadly from conversations across the County Council, it appears that this problem is not unique to our area.

Localized flooding

Extraordinary rainfall seems now to be less extraordinary, and localized flooding is a concern for all our villages.  Please continue to make us aware of any concerns so that we can action the County Council on your behalf.

Measles advice

Cases of measles are rising in some areas of the country including London and Peterborough. Please make sure you and your family are protected by having both doses of the free MMR vaccine. Measles is more than just a rash – it is an infection which spreads very easily and can cause serious complications in some people. Find out more about measles, including symptoms and how you can get vaccinated at Measles | CPICS Website. Please also be aware there is a significant cohort of 18–25-year-olds who also have not had the MMR vaccine.

Childminding careers – grants of £600 to help get started

From the County Council:  Are you interested in working in a profession which would enable you to work in your own home and continue to care for your own children, whilst providing quality care for children of working parents? If so, Registered Childminding may be the profession for you.

To help with starting your childminding business the Government are currently offering a grant of £600 towards your set up costs. We hold regular information evenings about childminding which are free to attend.  Contact:

Parents encouraged to apply for support with childcare costs

The Department for Education is reminding eligible working parents of two-year-olds that they will be able to register to access 15 hours free childcare per week from April 2024. The recommended time to register is between mid-January and the end of February.  More information on the childcare support available to parents can be found on the Childcare Choices website, where parents can explore the early education entitlements and other government help with childcare costs.

‘Help at Home: Care Micro Enterprises.’

When it comes to support for older people, our area is well provided for by Mobile Warden Schemed and other offers.

Not every area is so well served.  The County Council is working to help kick-start various new community-based initiatives, including care micro enterprises.  This involves local people setting up a very small business, as part of a shift toward localized personalised care and support services. 

If you would be interested in following this path as a new work opportunity, or finding out more as a resident in need of care, there is helpful information at, then search ‘Care Micro Enterprise.’  It’s early days but things are taking shape.

New Care Professional website for Cambridgeshire – training and career development

Care professionals make up the biggest proportion of Cambridgeshire’s working population – even more than the NHS. 

The County Council is making a big push on supporting career development in the care sector.  This includes rolling out the Real Living Wage for its care workers and supporting its providers to pay the Real Living Wage. 

It has also now launched a new website for training and career development: The Care Professional Academy, which is supported by Cambridgeshire’s Academy for Reaching Excellence (CARE), is a training website for adult social care providers and professionals to access training initiatives, receive benefits for taking part in training and access information from the local authority.

There’s lots of information at:

Online Checker for Home Improvement Projects

The Greater Cambridge Shared Planning Service has launched a user-friendly online checker to help homeowners find out if planning permission is needed for home improvement projects such as dormer windows, fence installations, outbuildings, front porches, flue installations and more.

 For those thinking about installing solar panels, check out the dedicated webpage for planning permission requirements at

If still unclear, please book the free 15-minute advice pre-app session:

Survey on ‘healthy places’

The County Council Public Health team has launched a survey for residents, seeking their views on the built environment across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough. This includes the physical structures and spaces where people live, work, play, and socialise. It asks:

  • How can we create communities that are healthier, easy to access and more inclusive?
  • Tell us what you think about the places where you live, work, travel and socialise in our county.

The survey can be completed online at Healthy Places Joint Strategic Needs Assessment Community Survey ( A small number of hard copies are being made available at libraries and public-facing council offices. The closing date is Monday 15 April.

The survey responses will be used to inform the draft Joint Strategic Needs Assessment, which will be taken to the Joint Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Health and Wellbeing Board & Integrated Care Board.  This is the meeting point for the council and the NHS and collaborative work to address health inequalities.

Leap Year: Enjoy the extra day!

February 29th:

Zoom Cuppa Surgeries Mondays 5-6PM

If you’d like to meet with your councillors by Zoom, to bring any concerns or ask any questions, please come along to our weekly Zoom Cuppa Surgery, on Mondays from 5-6 PM. Just let us know if you’d like to join and we’ll send you the link.

Anything we can help with?  Issues we can raise?

We would be delighted to talk with you any time – our contact details are below.  We can also help you raise awareness of issues affecting our community via this newsletter. 

What we stand for

The Liberal Democrats exist to build and safeguard a fair, free and open society, in which we seek to balance the fundamental values of liberty, equality and community, and in which no one shall be enslaved by poverty, ignorance or conformity. We aim to disperse power, to foster diversity and to nurture creativity. Learn more about or join the Liberal Democrats at

Sincerely yours,

Susan van de Ven, County Councillor for Bassingbourn, Melbourn, Meldreth and Whaddon and District Councillor for Bassingbourn and Litlington, Tel 07905 325574

Sally Ann Hart, District Councillor for Melbourn, Meldreth, Shepreth and Whaddon, Tel 07791 233303

Jose Hales, District Councillor for Melbourn, Meldreth, Shepreth and Whaddon, Tel 01763 221058

James Hobro, District Councillor for Foxton and Fowlmere,, Tel 07768706670

Peter McDonald, County Councillor for Shepreth, Foxton, Heydon, the Chishills and the Duxford Division villages,, Tel 07912 669092

   1 Comment

One Response

  1. Joanne Doggett says:

    Thanks for the update Susan. Good news indeed. Could you ask the Council to look at Back Lane in Melbourn. It is a very well used road that the Ambulance service use to access their facility. It is full of very bad potholes and the bushes are regularly overgrown causing vehicles to swerve onto the wrong side of the road. Much appreciated.

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