Draft North East Cambridge Area Action Plan

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Draft North East Cambridge Area Action Plan

Policy 14: Social, community and cultural Infrastructure

Representation ID: 54543

Received: 05/10/2020

Respondent: Arbury Road Baptist Church

Representation Summary:

“Policy 14 - Required on-site social and community infrastructure provision”

The list of provisions does not include places of worship. They are essential to community life, yet no mention has been made in the documentation. In places in Cambridge faith groups successfully shared other community buildings and this should be assumed, at a minimum, in the new development. Use of facilities by faith groups should be included in calculations of capacity and provision. It should also be noted that faith groups are key to bringing people together in a community through shared activities. By making space for them, the new community will be able to grow and flourish more quickly.

Research has been carried out and support this. For example in East Wichel, Swindon in Wiltshire, a church leader (ChL) both lived and worked within the community. A community space (The Stoweaway) was owned by Churches Together in Swindon but managed as a community space for all faiths and none. It was paid for with a grant from the council out of Section 106 funds. This placement enabled the Church leader to engage with the community as a resident and community builder, and work in partnership with stakeholders to allow an understanding of the community’s needs from a range of perspectives.

A conclusion from a study of this initiative was that:
“Social outcomes such as whether or not people enjoy living in the neighbourhood, are also linked to the community building intervention through analysis of trust and reciprocity, and perceptions of trust: those who visit the Stoweaway regularly are more likely to know and trust more neighbours, and believe that people look out for each other, and those who heard about activities from the ChL are also more likely to think that people look out for each other.”

[quote from: Dissertation submitted for the MA Applied Social Research (Built Environment) at the University of the West of England, Bristol, November 2012, Angela Parfitt. Divine intervention? Church leadership and community development in the Urban Village, A case study of East Wichel, Swindon in Wiltshire.]

Full text:

“Policy 14 - Required on-site social and community infrastructure provision”

The list of provisions does not include places of worship. They are essential to community life, yet no mention has been made in the documentation. In places in Cambridge faith groups successfully shared other community buildings and this should be assumed, at a minimum, in the new development. Use of facilities by faith groups should be included in calculations of capacity and provision. It should also be noted that faith groups are key to bringing people together in a community through shared activities. By making space for them, the new community will be able to grow and flourish more quickly.

Research has been carried out and support this. For example in East Wichel, Swindon in Wiltshire, a church leader (ChL) both lived and worked within the community. A community space (The Stoweaway) was owned by Churches Together in Swindon but managed as a community space for all faiths and none. It was paid for with a grant from the council out of Section 106 funds. This placement enabled the Church leader to engage with the community as a resident and community builder, and work in partnership with stakeholders to allow an understanding of the community’s needs from a range of perspectives.

A conclusion from a study of this initiative was that:
“Social outcomes such as whether or not people enjoy living in the neighbourhood, are also linked to the community building intervention through analysis of trust and reciprocity, and perceptions of trust: those who visit the Stoweaway regularly are more likely to know and trust more neighbours, and believe that people look out for each other, and those who heard about activities from the ChL are also more likely to think that people look out for each other.”

[quote from: Dissertation submitted for the MA Applied Social Research (Built Environment) at the University of the West of England, Bristol, November 2012, Angela Parfitt. Divine intervention? Church leadership and community development in the Urban Village, A case study of East Wichel, Swindon in Wiltshire.]

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