Queen Edith's Community Forum

Queen Edith’s news 2020 vol.09: September

4 September issue

Council Area Meeting online this Monday

The City Council’s “South Area Committee” will be meeting in public on Monday 7 September for only the second time in a year, so it’s a rare opportunity to hear about and discuss local issues. It’s being streamed online, and anyone can watch. Topics include policing and safer neighbourhoods; the proposed busway from Queen Edith’s to a new Park & Ride the other side of Babraham village; the Nightingale Recreation Ground Pavilion project; and the planned Cambridge South station. There’s also the usual ‘Open Forum’ which will cover questions submitted by the public. Make a note to watch the live stream from 7pm on Monday here. You can read the meeting briefing papers beforehand here.

Queen Edith’s magazine delivered

Almost all of the 5,500 copies of the new Queen Edith’s magazine have been delivered by our amazing volunteers (too many to list!), so if you haven’t had a copy through your door, do let us know. Exceptions are Gunhild Close and parts of Gunhild Way, which we’ll do this weekend. Also, as ever, if anyone knows how to get issues delivered to Ventress Farm Court without ringing dozens of doorbells individually to get access, please let us know. Until we find out, apologies to the residents there.

Pre-school-age children? Make some friends!

A group of local families with pre-school age children will be meeting at the playground between Godwin Close and Gunhild Close every Friday morning between 10am and 11.30am. Everyone is welcome at these completely informal meet-ups, so come along and make new friends. Please bring your own snacks, picnic blanket, etc. Parents are responsible for managing their children’s social distancing & hand hygiene. Meet-ups will go ahead in all but the worst weather, so wrap up warm and dry!

No live gigs at Cambridge Junction

Matt Burman, Artistic Director at Cambridge Junction, writes: “Unfortunately as of today, I’m sad to say that it looks unlikely that our live gigs and club nights will return before next year. I know this will come as a massive disappointment. We will continue to work to find creative solutions but right now there are very few options available to us. Our proposal in the short term, is to refocus our programmes on creative learning and community projects, artist development and residencies. We will also explore socially distanced and outdoor performances where these are viable, and look at how we share more work online. We want to find different ways to work outside the building and in communities. And we will want to talk with you about what you might want from us, the stories that we might help you to tell or the songs we might sing with you.” Support the venue here, and see what they are managing to provide here.

Taj by bike from Foodstuff

Foodstuff is a brilliant new service delivering the best local food in Cambridge from independent restaurants. 100% of the money goes to the restaurant (other delivery services charge as much as 35%) and best of all, your orders are delivered by bike. Order to your door from Cambridge favourites like Aromi, Fitzbillies and Steak & Honour …and now, Queen Edith’s very own Taj Tandoori Indian Restaurant too. See what’s available in your street here.

Hills Road fruit stand continues

The Hills Road fruit stand (below) will be open again this weekend on the driveway of 253 Hills Road on Saturday 5th September from 10.30am until all the fruit has gone. Not for profit, this is a community support project to help residents taste seasonal produce from local farms, with all donations going to the Queen Edith Community Food Hub. This week will feature Victoria plums plus two new varieties, greengages (likely the last for this season), Lord Lambourne apples (new) and new season Conference pears.

This week at The Light Cinema

Our local multi-screen cinema is back and busy, but with great social distancing measures in place. Films this week include Black Panther, Hope Gap, Les Misérables, Onward, Tenet, The Empire Strikes Back (40th Anniversary), The Greatest Showman, The New Mutants and Trolls World Tour. Full listings here.

Bella Italia reopens

Cambridge Leisure favourite Bella Italia is reopening on Monday (7th September). The menu is slightly reduced to prepare food safely, but they say you can still expect to see many of your Bella favourites on the menu. Tables can be booked here.

Commendation for Community Forum

The Queen Edith’s Community Forum and the Red Cross Area Residents Association are among a small list of organisations being officially recognised (below) by Cambridgeshire County Council for supporting those in need in the county since the start of the Coronavirus pandemic. Cllr Mac McGuire, Chairman of Cambridgeshire County Council, said: “It’s been remarkable and heart-warming to see what people are achieving every day in the support of others. These are Cambridgeshire’s true heroes and we’re very proud of them all.” We would like to thank Cllr Amanda Taylor for nominating the two local organisations. Our Happy To Help scheme is still in operation for those who find themselves in need of help due to self-isolation issues.

RNLI Calendars and Cards

Local RNLI representative Geoff Heathcock is about to take delivery of calendars, Christmas cards and diaries in aid of the RNLI and will be selling these from Tuesday 14th September. You can pop around to Geoff’s house at 52 Queen Edith’s Way to take a look on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday afternoons between 2pm and 4.30pm, or call Geoff on 01223 244901.

Food Hub open tomorrow

The Queen Edith’s Community Food Hub is open as usual tomorrow morning at St. James Church in Wulfstan Way, with free fresh and packaged food supplies and household goods for those experiencing hardship. Thanks this week to Lesley Q for the big bag of lovely Bramley apples. The Food Hub is open from 10.30am to 12.30pm every Saturday morning. More details here.

 

11 September issue

Fish’n’Chips night at the Queen Edith

It’s tonight! The Queen Edith pub’s first ‘Fish Friday’. Try their fresh beer battered haddock and whole tail scampi. There will also be some fishy specials on! Available to eat in or takeaway, but call ahead on 01223 244536 to reserve a table or order. More details here.

Great opportunity to see Eco refitting

Are you interested in External Wall Insulation for your home? Two local homeowners are upgrading their houses and are offering to show visitors what’s involved and how it works (before it all gets covered up with the finish render). This Saturday morning (12th Sept) between 10-12am, anyone is welcome to come over to 3 Topcliffe Way or 23 Nightingale Avenue to see what EPS and woodfibre retrofit looks like and perhaps to discuss retrofit more generally with the owners. Both houses have solar PV, MVHR (ventilation heat recovery), perimeter (below ground) insulation and airtightness measures. It should be fascinating. If you can’t make Saturday morning then feel free to email Wookey (one of the homeowners) to arrange another time or just to ask questions.

Ration Challenge helps refugees

Local resident Shini Kebla writes: “After seeing the recent news about migrants and refugees, I was feeling down about the situation and I wanted to help. Next week, from 16 – 23 September, I will be living on the same rations as a Syrian refugee for a week to raise money for emergency food, hygiene kits and lifesaving support for those who have been hit hardest by the coronavirus pandemic.” The fundraising initiative is called the Ration Challenge. If you’d like to make a donation to show your appreciation of Shini’s effort, you can do so very easily here. Already enough has been raised to provide food for two refugees for a whole year!

Barclays Bank closing

We’re losing another bank later in the year, with the closure of Barclays Bank’s large Cherry Hinton Road branch on 27 November. This will leave the area with just Lloyds Bank on Cherry Hinton Road. Barclays says that either of our two local Post Office counters can be used to withdraw or pay in cash, pay in cheques or find out balance information. There are also two free cashpoints at Cambridge Leisure.

Roundabout on The One Show …at last!

BBC One’s The One Show filmed a piece about the new Fendon Road roundabout a couple of weeks ago, but had to postpone showing it at the last moment. They now assure us that it will be on Monday night’s edition, so do be sure to watch. The episode will also be available here on the BBC’s iPlayer catch-up service afterwards.

Babraham Road Park & Ride expansion

The Greater Cambridge Partnership and consultants Mott MacDonald are proposing to add over 150 new car parking spaces to Babraham Road Park & Ride along with a new footpath, solar canopies and a new landscaping scheme. More details and a plan of the proposals are available to download on the project’s website. There’s an online presentation of the proposals on Wednesday, 23 September from 6-8pm via Zoom. To join the meeting, please register in advance here.

National Wine Shop of the Year!

Congratulations to Cambridge Wine Merchants – which has its local branch on Cherry Hinton Road – for winning “National Wine Shop of the Year” in the Decanter Retailer Awards. If that sounds familiar, the local chain also won this award last year: to win two years running is truly exceptional. There were over 100 entrants to the competition.

Hills Road fruit stand continues

The Hills Road fruit stand will be open again this weekend on the driveway of 253 Hills Road on Saturday 12th September from 10.30am until all the fruit has gone. The plum season is slowly drawing to a close but this week they have two varieties to choose from – so take the opportunity while you can – plus Conference pears and apples, both eaters and cookers.

This week at The Light Cinema

Our local multi-screen cinema is back and busy, but with great social distancing measures in place. Films coming up include 42nd Street The Musical, 100% Wolf, After We Collided, Bill & Ted Face the Music, Black Panther, Break The Silence: The Movie, Elvis: That’s the Way it Is, Kinky Boots The Musical, Les Misérables, Onward, Pinocchio, Tenet, The Broken Hearts Gallery, The Eight Hundred, The Greatest Showman, The New Mutants, The Roads Not Taken and Trolls World Tour. Full listings here.

A quick survey before you go

Could you help a local Hills Road Sixth Form College student, Bea, please? She has compiled a short questionnaire for residents as part of her A-level coursework studying parts of Cambridge. There are only a dozen questions, it’s anonymous, and it took us about 90 seconds to complete. Give it a go here.

Food Hub open tomorrow

The Queen Edith’s Community Food Hub is open as usual tomorrow morning at St. James Church in Wulfstan Way, with free fresh and packaged food supplies and household goods for those experiencing hardship. Thanks this week to Hannah S for the apples and to the amazing donations from Dunstan Court, shown above being presented to Sam Davies by Donna Turner from CHS Group. The Food Hub is open from 10.30am to 12.30pm every Saturday morning. More details here.

 

18 September issue

Should you send your child to school?

This Quick Guide for Parents is being distributed by local schools, detailing what to do if you suspect you, your child or another member of your family group have COVID-19. If you have school children in the house, do make sure you’ve read it.

Building into the next decade

The Greater Cambridge Local Plan is the long term vision which will set out where future development in Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire is allowed to happen, and what it should include. The ‘First Conversation’ took place in January and February, trying to gauge public opinion, and the results have now been published – you can read the full report here. What we’re sure most residents will be interested in will be the ‘Call for Sites’ exercise, where landowners and developers have put in proposals for development. This appears to cover almost every piece of open land in the Queen Edith’s area, right out to Shelford Road roundabout, Wort’s Causeway, Lime Kiln Hill and beyond. You can see the interactive ‘site submissions’ map here. Perhaps the best place to start may be with some of the local bloggers who have already begun to discuss the news: we’re putting together a list of those, along with any news reports, here.

Be persistent if you need a COVID-19 test

Cambridge City Council reminds us that the National Testing Programme for COVID-19 is experiencing exceptionally high demand. They advise: “If you’ve tried to book a test and you’ve not been able to, or you’ve been offered a location or time that’s not convenient, wait a few hours and try again. Booking slots for Coronavirus tests are made available the evening before for morning appointments, and on the morning for afternoon appointments. Please don’t give up, keep trying, and continue to self-isolate if you have symptoms of Coronavirus.”

Dial a Ride is back: how to find out more

Dial a Ride restarted operations on the 3rd August. The fleet has ‘COVID-19-secure procedures’ in place and is operating with reduced seating in the minibuses to maintain social distancing. Dial a Ride is a member scheme, with an annual membership of just £10.00. If you want any further information or to get in touch for arranging journeys, please contact the office on 01223 506335.

Help apple picking at Wandlebury

Cambridge Sustainable Food is looking for volunteers to go apple picking in Wandlebury Country Park next Wednesday, 23rd September. Their orchards are full of apples to donate to the city’s Food Hubs, but they need to be picked! Social distancing will be observed. If you’re interested, or have any questions, please email Louise at CSF.

Roundabout on The One Show …at last

If you missed the report on the new Fendon Road roundabout on BBC One’s The One Show this week, you can watch it again here …featuring our very own Sam Davies, speaking in a personal capacity.

St John Centre open for bookings

The St John’s Centre, on Hills Road, has now reopened for event bookings. The centre was refurbished in 2019, and offers fantastic meeting room facilities, together with a professional kitchen and fully accessible toilets. Detailed COVID-19 safety measures are now in place, and each hirer is required to sign up to these. For more details, visit the St John’s Parish website or call 01223 241316.

Schoolreaders return

Schoolreaders is a charity that places volunteers in primary schools to give free one-to-one reading sessions. Volunteers are provided with guidance and training. Its aim is to make sure that every child can read well by the time they move to secondary school at the age of 11. There are opportunities in local schools – more at the Schoolreaders website.

COVID-19 posters for your flats or workplace

Cambridgeshire County Council has a whole series of public information posters relating to COVID-19, and you might like to print one or two out if you have access to a noticeboard in a block of flats, workplace or community meeting point. You can find them here. Or click on the poster below for a PDF version of that one suitable for printing.

Perse School Open Days

The four local Perse schools (Pelican, Prep, Upper and Sixth Form) all have open days in the next month, starting with the Upper School on Hills Road on Saturday 26 September. Entry is only available with a pre-booked timed entry ticket – more details on the events at the school website here.

News from our MP

South Cambridgeshire MP Anthony Browne has an email newsletter out, where he talks about his recent activities in the area and in parliament. You can read the newsletter here.

Litter pickers available

If you’re as unhappy as we are about the amount of extra discarded waste around the place – especially face masks and gloves – please feel free to help with the clean up. We have a number of litter pickers and bags available to borrow. Just ask.

Hills Road fruit stand continues

The Hills Road fruit stand will be open again this weekend on the driveway of 253 Hills Road on Saturday 19th September from 10.30am until all the fruit has gone. This looks to be the last week of the plum season so come enjoy that last dribble. There will also be Conference and Comice pears plus several varieties of apples.

Online Council meeting success

The recent City Council South Area Committee meeting was held online for the first time, and seemed to work well. But did it help or hinder public involvement? We asked Committee Manager James Goddard to find out, and he reports that 57 people (not including councillors and officers) ‘tuned in’. This is a lot more than normally attend in person, so we guess that in the future, when physical meetings are impossible, the City Council will try to hold meetings this way rather than postponing them. If you watched the event and have any comments, we’d love to hear them and will pass them on to the council.

This week at The Light Cinema

Our local multi-screen cinema is back and busy, with social distancing measures in place. Films coming up include 100% Wolf, After We Collided, Andre Rieu’s Magical Maastricht: Together In Music, Bill & Ted: Face the Music, Black Panther, Break The Silence: The Movie, Elvis That’s the Way it Is, Kinky Boots The Musical, Les Misérables, Onward, Pinocchio, Rocks, Tenet, The Broken Hearts Gallery, The Eight Hundred, The Greatest Showman, The King and I, The New Mutants, The Roads Not Taken, and Trolls World TourFull listings here.

Food Hub open tomorrow (and a request!)

The Queen Edith’s Community Food Hub is open as usual tomorrow morning at St. James Church in Wulfstan Way, with free fresh and packaged food supplies and household goods for those experiencing hardship. Thanks this week to Lisa B for her contribution of cucumbers from her allotment – our visitors really appreciate fresh, local produce, which can be dropped off on Fridays: see details here. We’re also after board and picture books for children aged 5 and under if you have any in good condition. The Food Hub is open from 10.30am to 12.30pm every Saturday morning. More details here.

Thank you!

We don’t have a regular ‘unsung hero’ spot in this newsletter – perhaps we should – but the rest of the Queen Edith’s Community Forum team would like to express our gratitude to our Treasurer, Bronwen, whose workload has gone through the roof, thanks to all the expenditure involved in our COVID-19 support initiatives. Thank you!

 

25 September issue

‘Happy To Help’ with prescription collections

As the summer draws to a close, we expect to see an increase in requests from isolating residents for collection of prescriptions from local pharmacies. Most local pharmacies try to deliver urgent medications, such as antibiotics, when capacity permits, but that they are increasingly busy with extra demand and also staff shortages caused by the pandemic and this is not always possible. If you are shielding or otherwise find it difficult to pick up your prescriptions yourself, your first port of call should be to find a friend or neighbour to help. However, our ‘Happy To Help’ volunteers will try to respond to requests for help within 24 hours but please remember we are not an emergency service! More about the ‘Happy To Help’ scheme here.

Building into the next decade

Last week we reported on the first steps in the next Greater Cambridge Local Plan, which will guide new building in the area over the next twenty years. There are potential major implications for the Queen Edith’s area, and we’re publishing links to any news stories and opinion articles we come across. We’ve got some new articles for you to read here.

How you can help our trees

The Cambridge Canopy Project from the City Council aims to increase tree canopy cover in the city, which will help the city adapt to climate change. There’s a useful video introducing it here, and lots of ways in which you can help with the care of our trees in the project’s web page here (see ‘Get involved’).

Arthur Rank Hospice Charity’s Festive 5K

This year’s special edition of our local charity’s ever-popular ‘Ely Festive 5K Fun Run’ allows you to run a 5K route of your choice on Sunday 22 November 2020. Everyone’s invited to run at the same start time of 10.30am from their chosen start point. All entrants registered before 18 November will receive a free Santa hat and finisher’s medal. For the competitive, there will be a group leader board through Strava. More details here.

National Coronavirus (COVID-19) update

Earlier in the week the government announced further national measures to address rising cases of coronavirus in England. Updates include where face coverings must be worn, working from home recommendations, business changes and the all-important rules on meeting people. You can read what has changed – 22 September here.

Jonny & The Baptists at the Junction (in a way)

Award-nominated musical-comedy act Jonny and the Baptists are partnering up with their favourite arts centres, theatres and comedy clubs for a new show, live from the downstairs room in their (currently shut) local pub. Next Tuesday it’s the turn of Cambridge Junction, and it’s a pay-what-you-feel event, so why not tune in? More details here.

Clothes and supplies needed for refugees

Cambridge Convoy Refugee Action Group sends regular convoys of volunteers and aid from the Cambridge area to help refugees in Europe. The group is holding a collection point at St. John the Evangelist, Hills Road, on Saturday 17th October and Saturday 14th November from 11:00am to 3:00pm, so you’ve got a few weeks to sort out donations for them. A list of what they need is here.

Win £100 of Bordeaux wine

Cambridge Wine Merchants on Cherry Hinton Road is participating in a social media competition from Bordeaux Wines UK. If you’re on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter and post a photo featuring Bordeaux wine, you can win £100 to spend in our favourite local wine shop. More here.

Engaging chat on the phone with COPE

COPE (Cambridgeshire Older People’s Enterprise) is running a third series of ‘Talking Together’, the initiative that brings older adults together on the telephone for engaging and stimulating conversations about topics of shared interest. The free programme offers weekly discussion groups which you join from the comfort of your home. No special technology is needed, just your own telephone. There’s a brilliant lineup of topics for October, which are listed on the registration form here.

What’s happening at Addenbrooke’s and the Rosie

The Cambridge University Hospitals Foundation Trust has its AGM online next Wednesday (30 September) at 6pm. Chair, Mike More, Lead Governor, Julia Loudon, and Chief Executive, Roland Sinker will reflect on the past year and look forward to the next 18 months. Register in advance for the Zoom call here.

Thanks to the Hills Road fruit stand!

The Hills Road fruit stand is taking a break as the plum and greengage season has come to an end. It hopes to return for a one-off “Apple & Pear Celebration” later in the Autumn. The stand donated around £375 to the Queen Edith’s Food Hub, as well as supplying some tasty, local fruit and seeing many friendly faces, so thank you to everyone who came along!

This week at The Light Cinema

Our local multi-screen cinema is back and busy, with social distancing measures in place. Films coming up include 100% Wolf; After We Collided; Bill & Ted Face the Music; David Attenborough: A Life on Our Planet; Dreambuilders; Matthew Bourne’s The Red Shoes; Onward; Pinocchio; Rocks; Schemers; Tenet; The Eight Hundred; The King and I; The New Mutants; The Trial of Chicago 7; and Trolls World Tour. Full listings here.

Food Hub open tomorrow (and a request!)

The Queen Edith’s Community Food Hub is open as usual tomorrow morning at St. James Church in Wulfstan Way, with free fresh and packaged food supplies and household goods for those experiencing hardship. We really appreciate any food donations, which can be dropped off on Fridays: see details here. We’re also after board and picture books for children aged 5 and under if you have any in good condition. The Food Hub is open from 10.30am to 12.30pm every Saturday morning. More details here.