City Council elections 2024: candidates views

Cambridge City Council elections on Thursday 2nd May are less than 2 weeks away. So what do the candidates standing in Coleridge, Petersfield & Romsey wards think about Mill Road?

We sent our May 2024 election questionnaire to all the city council candidates to find out. The answers we’ve got back are shown below. You can filter them by Ward and by Party.

Many thanks to all those candidates that took the time to give us their thoughts 🙂

Ward


Party


BAIGENT, Dave (Romsey – Labour)

1. Do you think that the amount of motor traffic on Mill Rd should be reduced? If you do, please indicate how you think that should be achieved. If you don’t, please say why you hold that opinion.

Yes. Restricting Mill Road Bridge is a significant step to traffic reduction. I am very much in favour of methods of slowing traffic on Mill Road. There are numerous ways in which this could be done and these should involve actual restrictions in the current road and widening the pavement.

2. Are you broadly in agreement with Mill Road 4 People’s 8 goals? If no, please give brief reasons.

Yes.

3. If elected, what will you do to support our campaign?

I already support MR4P and publicly declare that. I believe that regular meetings between politicians and your group should take place. I will continue to agitate for improvements to reduce traffic on Mill Rd and make cycling and walking safer and easier.

4. How do you think rat-running in South Petersfield residential streets (between Mill Rd and the station / Hills Rd) should be stopped? If elected, how would you help to achieve that?

Yes Despite this being a county matter and before MillR4P existed I tried to reduce the amount of traffic rat running between Mill Rd and the station. I have continually approached County Councillors about this but nothing has happened. I have tried to mobilise Petersfield City Councillors to be involved and as recently as last month Romsey Ward of the Labour Party have tried to establish a group to discuss safety on Mill Road and that inevitably would include creating greater safety by reducing the rat running to the station. In many ways I am in despair that this matter is not even really being discussed – I will continue to push to stop rat running to the station.

5. Is there anything else you would like to say about MR4P’s campaign?

Thank you for your efforts to support the Mill Road area. We are almost perfectly aligned in our concerns and ideas. I am aware that your group remains apolitical but would encourage you to reconsider or at least set up meetings between councillors and yourself on a regular basis.

BANNELL, William (Romsey – Independent)

1. Do you think that the amount of motor traffic on Mill Rd should be reduced? If you do, please indicate how you think that should be achieved. If you don’t, please say why you hold that opinion.

No response

2. Are you broadly in agreement with Mill Road 4 People’s 8 goals? If no, please give brief reasons.

No response

3. If elected, what will you do to support our campaign?

No response

4. How do you think rat-running in South Petersfield residential streets (between Mill Rd and the station / Hills Rd) should be stopped? If elected, how would you help to achieve that?

No response

5. Is there anything else you would like to say about MR4P’s campaign?

No response

    BRUNTON, Judy Margaret (Coleridge – Liberal Democrat)

    1. Do you think that the amount of motor traffic on Mill Rd should be reduced? If you do, please indicate how you think that should be achieved. If you don’t, please say why you hold that opinion.

    As Liberal Democrats our view is that the health of Cambridge, its economy and its environment, needs more use of public transport, and more cycling and walking. It was clear from the consultation on Mill Road that the majority of respondents were in favour of reducing the traffic on Mill Road and as a City Councillor I would work to support the implementation of a sensible scheme that would achieve that objective. I am willing to regard the proposed bus gate as the basis for this.

    2. Are you broadly in agreement with Mill Road 4 People’s 8 goals? If no, please give brief reasons.

    Yes. I am a member of the group and have participated in some meetings.

    3. If elected, what will you do to support our campaign?

    If the Bus Gate goes ahead as planned it will be important to bring all of the Mill Road community together to gain the maximum benefit from the closure. As a City Councillor I will advocate for investment in the Streetscape of Mill Road.

    4. How do you think rat-running in South Petersfield residential streets (between Mill Rd and the station / Hills Rd) should be stopped? If elected, how would you help to achieve that?

    The city council is not the highways or transport authority, so has no means of implementing changes to traffic regulation. However, as a City Councillor I would advocate on behalf of the residents for a scheme to reduce traffic problems caused by rat-running. It is important to have the support of the whole community for any changes to the area and I would therefore encourage all residents to participate fully in the necessary consultation regarding future changes to traffic regulation.

    5. Is there anything else you would like to say about MR4P’s campaign?

    I would congratulate the group on its conduct of a sensitive and well organised campaign.

      DAVEY, Mike (Petersfield – Labour)

      1. Do you think that the amount of motor traffic on Mill Rd should be reduced? If you do, please indicate how you think that should be achieved. If you don’t, please say why you hold that opinion.

      I do think that the amount of traffic on Mill Rd should be reduced. Mill Rd is already a wonderful place to be and less traffic could enable the road to blossom into something truly special … along models that are seen elsewhere in Europe. The starting point should be implementing the County Council decision on Mill Rd bridge. Once implemented residents, businesses and other users could start to plan for the future.

      2. Are you broadly in agreement with Mill Road 4 People’s 8 goals? If no, please give brief reasons.

      Yes. However the devil is in the detail and some of the goals require patience, negotiation and on occasion compromise.

      3. If elected, what will you do to support our campaign?

      If elected I would be happy to continue working with Mill Rd 4 people in my capacity as ward Cllr, leader of Council or Board member at the GCP. I would be particularly interested in starting to plan and model a future for the road with a view to enhancing design and use. As indicated above it is vital we are ambitious and innovative when we plan the future, looking to models of good practice elsewhere in Europe.

      4. How do you think rat-running in South Petersfield residential streets (between Mill Rd and the station / Hills Rd) should be stopped? If elected, how would you help to achieve that?

      Clearly rat running is problematic, but requires a city wide analysis of street use so we don’t simply move the problem around the city. It would be my view that whilst I am not a traffic planner the key will invariably be to resolve the traffic problems around the station. It is frustrating that despite the work of many, including myself, the situation has appeared intractable to date. However we must not give up and I would be very interested in working with others to find solutions.

      5. Is there anything else you would like to say about MR4P’s campaign?

      Simply to reiterate that I am supportive of your goals and the challenge you offer is welcome, not least because it requires those elected for the area to work for the future of the road and those residents who use it.

      GRIFFIN, Tim (Coleridge – Labour)

      1. Do you think that the amount of motor traffic on Mill Rd should be reduced? If you do, please indicate how you think that should be achieved. If you don’t, please say why you hold that opinion.

      Reducing motor traffic city-wide would be a good goal. We need a much improved system of public transportation.

      2. Are you broadly in agreement with Mill Road 4 People’s 8 goals? If no, please give brief reasons.

      Yes, broadly. However, as a councillor for Coleridge I am concerned about spill-over of traffic onto Perne Rd, Coleridge Rd, and Cherry Hinton Rd. We already have a lot of problems with traffic on these roads and the bridge closure will only make this worse.

      3. If elected, what will you do to support our campaign?

      I think your campaign needs to address the issue of traffic being forced onto other roads.

      4. How do you think rat-running in South Petersfield residential streets (between Mill Rd and the station / Hills Rd) should be stopped? If elected, how would you help to achieve that?

      The County Council should restrict travel on these short cuts.

      5. Is there anything else you would like to say about MR4P’s campaign?

      Again, I support the goals of your campaign. However, I feel that your group needs to broaden its scope and work with people in the adjacent areas to work out solutions to the problem of spill-over traffic causing more problems in these areas.

      KARIMJEE, Zakariyah (Petersfield – Green)

      1. Do you think that the amount of motor traffic on Mill Rd should be reduced? If you do, please indicate how you think that should be achieved. If you don’t, please say why you hold that opinion.

      I do think that the traffic on Mill Road should be reduced. A certain level of traffic will need to remain as Mill Road is a minor artery through the city, but I’d hope that as a popular shopping area it can be a road that leans towards active travel and necessary car journeys, rather than a thoroughfare for cars.

      I think that along with the bridge restriction, there should be footway buildouts to slow traffic to one lane with priority control. It should be made harder to park on the pavements, and easier to visit by bike or foot, by planting trees and building bike racks. The buildouts could also provide easier pedestrian crossings, and would allow for widening of the pavement at key locations to improve accessibility. In other places buildouts could provide areas for local businesses to seat customers on the street, or put in place seating for the public.

      Additionally I think a reconsideration of the Mill Road to East road junction could help, with a similar approach to what’s being discussed around the catholic church junction – reducing options for cars and increasing options for bikes, with the aim of reducing car journeys down Mill Road.

      2. Are you broadly in agreement with Mill Road 4 People’s 8 goals? If no, please give brief reasons.

      I am a strong supporter of the 8 goals of MillRoad4People.

      3. If elected, what will you do to support our campaign?

      I would advocate on the city council for the goals of MillRoad4People, and in general for improvements to the public realm around the Petersfield area with similar objectives to your goals. As an immediate objective I would look to get Mill Road on the list for the upcoming pavement parking ban.

      4. How do you think rat-running in South Petersfield residential streets (between Mill Rd and the station / Hills Rd) should be stopped? If elected, how would you help to achieve that?

      Mill road needs to become less convenient as a route to the station and across to Hills road. The two approaches I would advocate for in tandem are to redirect traffic along lensfield road and down Hills road, and to provide more non-car options to get to the station.

      The ideas I’ve suggested in the first question to reduce motor traffic would also increase driving times along Mill road, which may redirect some traffic to Hills Road. I additionally think that adding modal filters such as those on Gwydir and Kingston Street, or one way roads such as those in Romsey, could allow access without opening it up to rat-running. Tenison road in particular is a very busy route that would need a lot of consideration, to reduce usage without preventing it forming a necessary through-route.

      Improvements to active travel provision would also make getting to the station easier – for example, completing the Chisholm trail using the Network Rail maintenance path would make cycle journeys to/from the station much easier. Cycling journeys are only as safe as their least safe part, and currently it’s quite dangerous to cross Mill Road at Kingston Street/Devonshire Road, which would put people off cycling over driving to the station.

      5. Is there anything else you would like to say about MR4P’s campaign?

      As someone who gets frustrated & endangered frequently by cars driving & parking on Mill Road, I was very pleased to find your campaign about 6 months ago and have been an avid pavement parking reporter since!

      MEFTAH, Shapour (Coleridge – Conservative)

      1. Do you think that the amount of motor traffic on Mill Rd should be reduced? If you do, please indicate how you think that should be achieved. If you don’t, please say why you hold that opinion.

      No response

      2. Are you broadly in agreement with Mill Road 4 People’s 8 goals? If no, please give brief reasons.

      No response

      3. If elected, what will you do to support our campaign?

      No response

      4. How do you think rat-running in South Petersfield residential streets (between Mill Rd and the station / Hills Rd) should be stopped? If elected, how would you help to achieve that?

      No response

      5. Is there anything else you would like to say about MR4P’s campaign?

      No response

      NELSON, Rob (Romsey – Conservative)

      1. Do you think that the amount of motor traffic on Mill Rd should be reduced? If you do, please indicate how you think that should be achieved. If you don’t, please say why you hold that opinion.

      No response

      2. Are you broadly in agreement with Mill Road 4 People’s 8 goals? If no, please give brief reasons.

      No response

      3. If elected, what will you do to support our campaign?

      No response

      4. How do you think rat-running in South Petersfield residential streets (between Mill Rd and the station / Hills Rd) should be stopped? If elected, how would you help to achieve that?

      No response

      5. Is there anything else you would like to say about MR4P’s campaign?

      No response

      NICMANIS, Sarah Louise (Coleridge – Green)

      1. Do you think that the amount of motor traffic on Mill Rd should be reduced? If you do, please indicate how you think that should be achieved. If you don’t, please say why you hold that opinion.

      Yes, absolutely, it should be reduced. The Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire Green Party believe that a transition from fossil fuel-powered transport to cycling, walking and use of public transport is an essential step towards tackling the climate crisis as well as air pollution and other more local problems.

      In the Mill Road Bridge consultation, the Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire Green Party favoured a modal filter, allowing only buses, cycles, electric scooters, taxis, emergency vehicles and private vehicles carrying blue badge holders through.

      Further, I have heard from many residents who are unhappy about the impending closure of the bridge because they are alarmed at how traffic will build up on other streets as a result, particularly during rush hours on the already congested Hills Road. This just takes the car problem with its accompanying pollution and accident risks elsewhere. The answer to this is an effective, streamlined, cheap, electric-powered public transport system. It is tragedy that we do not have this in place yet due to delayed action from the Greater Cambridge Partnership and our plethora of council bodies. To those residents who struggle to get places without a car because they can’t rely on our local bus system to take them where they want to go for the time they want to be there, it is difficult, and also nonsensical, to say “use a bus instead!”

      So really before any changes in the roads happen, i.e. closing Mill Road Bridge, it would be much, much better to give our citizens a great bus service. It’s been a long time coming! And it is the persuasive tactic that we are missing at the moment to get people out of their cars and into zero-carbon transport.

      2. Are you broadly in agreement with Mill Road 4 People’s 8 goals? If no, please give brief reasons.

      Yes.

      3. If elected, what will you do to support our campaign?

      My concern about traffic, pollution and poor road management in Coleridge extends to Romsey and Petersfield. I deplore the current state of Coleridge Road which of course is a main road feeding into Mill Road. Both roads are unsafe and impractical for cyclists and pedestrians, not to mention the high levels of pollution caused by the road layout giving high priority to cars. Quite simply, dealing with traffic and pollution problems in Coleridge helps to deal with traffic and pollution problems on Mill Road. If elected, I will campaign for our local roads to have consistent and clearly segregated cycling and wheeling paths. Further, I will campaign for more sensible delivery times for vans/lorries dropping off to Mill Road traders to avoid the current situation of pavement parking.

      4. How do you think rat-running in South Petersfield residential streets (between Mill Rd and the station / Hills Rd) should be stopped? If elected, how would you help to achieve that?

      If elected, I would campaign for stricter enforcement of the 20mph speed limit in these areas prone to rat-running. I would recommend that speed cameras are installed in the most problematic areas and police presence be visible to those using the roads at times when some are liable to drive above the speed limit. Residents’ safety must be paramount in our priorities and must not be compromised as a result of reducing traffic on our beloved Mill Road.

      5. Is there anything else you would like to say about MR4P’s campaign?

      Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire Green Party see the future of Mill Road as a flourishing social and commercial centre, inhabited and used by a diverse range of people and serviced by an excellent pedestrian, cycle and public transport network. If the right decisions are taken now, Mill Road could become a more liveable, sustainable centre of a vibrant community. Mill Road is currently traffic-heavy and congested. Local car ownership is high, as evidenced by the demand for parking, but could potentially reduce rapidly if the area had better public transport and easier, safer cycling.

      We hold Mill Road to be an exemplar of the sorts of diverse communities that Cambridge should foster. The local area (Romsey/Petersfield) is becoming increasingly affluent but still is home to, and the workplace of, many lower income people; many young families also live here who seek a healthy lifestyle for themselves and their children.

      If elected, I would personally like to support the work of Mill Road for People as we Greens share your vision and love of Mill Road. As the highest priority, I would campaign for an efficient bus network that Mill Road urgently needs so we can get those car drivers out of cars onto electric buses and into town quickly and cheaply so everyone wins!

      OLIVER, Sam (Petersfield – Liberal Democrat)

      1. Do you think that the amount of motor traffic on Mill Rd should be reduced? If you do, please indicate how you think that should be achieved. If you don’t, please say why you hold that opinion.

      No response

      2. Are you broadly in agreement with Mill Road 4 People’s 8 goals? If no, please give brief reasons.

      No response

      3. If elected, what will you do to support our campaign?

      No response

      4. How do you think rat-running in South Petersfield residential streets (between Mill Rd and the station / Hills Rd) should be stopped? If elected, how would you help to achieve that?

      No response

      5. Is there anything else you would like to say about MR4P’s campaign?

      No response

      ROPER, Paul Jonathan (Petersfield – Conservative)

      1. Do you think that the amount of motor traffic on Mill Rd should be reduced? If you do, please indicate how you think that should be achieved. If you don’t, please say why you hold that opinion.

      No response

      2. Are you broadly in agreement with Mill Road 4 People’s 8 goals? If no, please give brief reasons.

      No response

      3. If elected, what will you do to support our campaign?

      No response

      4. How do you think rat-running in South Petersfield residential streets (between Mill Rd and the station / Hills Rd) should be stopped? If elected, how would you help to achieve that?

      No response

      5. Is there anything else you would like to say about MR4P’s campaign?

      No response

      WALMSLEY, John Charles (Romsey – Liberal Democrat)

      1. Do you think that the amount of motor traffic on Mill Rd should be reduced? If you do, please indicate how you think that should be achieved. If you don’t, please say why you hold that opinion.

      As Liberal Democrats our view is that the health of Cambridge, its economy and its environment, needs more use of public transport, cycling and walking. It was clear from the consultation on Mill Road that the majority of respondents were in favour of reducing the traffic on Mill Road and as a City Councillor I would work to support the implementation of the approved scheme mill road bridge and related improvements that would be consistent with these objectives.

      2. Are you broadly in agreement with Mill Road 4 People’s 8 goals? If no, please give brief reasons.

      Yes.

      3. If elected, what will you do to support our campaign?

      If the Bus Gate goes ahead as planned it will be important to bring all of the Mill Road community together to gain the maximum benefit from the closure. As a City Councillor I will advocate for investment in the Streetscape of Mill Road, including issues such as increased provision for bike parking, and seek to participate in the planning and implementation of the plans.

      4. How do you think rat-running in South Petersfield residential streets (between Mill Rd and the station / Hills Rd) should be stopped? If elected, how would you help to achieve that?

      The city council is not the highways or transport authority, so cannot directly make changes to traffic regulation. As a City Councillor in Romsey, I would advocate on behalf of the residents for schemes to reduce traffic problems such as rat-running and aim to gain a thorough understanding of the issues in Romsey and neighbouring areas. It is important to have the support of the whole community for any changes and I would therefore encourage all residents to participate in consultation regarding future changes to traffic regulation.

      5. Is there anything else you would like to say about MR4P’s campaign?

      I appreciate the way that the objectives are presented, including specific ideas for discussion.

      WEBB, Iain Duncan (Romsey – Green)

      1. Do you think that the amount of motor traffic on Mill Rd should be reduced? If you do, please indicate how you think that should be achieved. If you don’t, please say why you hold that opinion.

      No response

      2. Are you broadly in agreement with Mill Road 4 People’s 8 goals? If no, please give brief reasons.

      No response

      3. If elected, what will you do to support our campaign?

      No response

      4. How do you think rat-running in South Petersfield residential streets (between Mill Rd and the station / Hills Rd) should be stopped? If elected, how would you help to achieve that?

      No response

      5. Is there anything else you would like to say about MR4P’s campaign?

      No response

      WILKINSON, Christopher (Petersfield – Freedom Alliance)

      1. Do you think that the amount of motor traffic on Mill Rd should be reduced? If you do, please indicate how you think that should be achieved. If you don’t, please say why you hold that opinion.

      No response

      2. Are you broadly in agreement with Mill Road 4 People’s 8 goals? If no, please give brief reasons.

      No response

      3. If elected, what will you do to support our campaign?

      No response

      4. How do you think rat-running in South Petersfield residential streets (between Mill Rd and the station / Hills Rd) should be stopped? If elected, how would you help to achieve that?

      No response

      5. Is there anything else you would like to say about MR4P’s campaign?

      No response