There was a well-attended Parish Council meeting on 26th July and a lively open session before the formal meeting began. Alison Talkington from South Cambs District Council gave a brief presentation about Neighbourhood Plans. Hardwick already has an active Village Plan Group, supported by the Parish Council, but there are advantages to the more formal Neighbourhood Plan when it comes to local decisions on planning issues – but also a lot of extra work. The Parish Council decided that it wanted to adopt a Neighbourhood Plan for the whole of Hardwick and Tony Gill, Pauline Joslin and Jim Stewart were appointed to a newly formed group. The new Group was asked to meet with the Village Plan Group with a view to combining resources.
A planning application for 98 houses on land adjacent to Grace Crescent was on the agenda for discussion and a number of village residents attended the meeting to make their views known to the Parish Council. There were some thoughtful and constructive comments which the Parish Council were pleased to receive. There followed a detailed and wide ranging discussion of the application by the Parish Council. The proposal would provide much needed affordable housing in the village which the Council is keen to support but the Council had significant misgivings over the sustainability of a development on this site and, on a show of hands, unanimously decided to object to the application.
Clare McGowan of Hardwick Play Park Group gave an interim report to the Parish Council on the activities of the Group.
Other items on the agenda included
Recycling collection for electrical goods in Hardwick which was approved
Tree Survey of all Parish Council trees in the village – the Clerk will invite tenders for remedial work needed
Grounds maintenance – the Clerk will seek tenders for grounds maintenance in the village. The Council considered the suggestion that some verges be sown with a wild flower mix with interest but further consideration was needed regarding locations to be seeded.
Written by Steve Rose