GRIGGS OF SOHAM: Cambs County Council chairman John Powley decides not to stand for re-election

The road sign at the northern end of Orchard Row.

The road sign at the northern end of Orchard Row. - Credit: Archant

OUR columnist Geoff Griggs also asks if is this the least informative road sign in East Cambridgeshire.

Cllr John Powley.

Cllr John Powley. - Credit: Archant


IF you blinked on Wednesday you probably missed the two ladies from East Cambridgeshire District Council who crept into the Pavilion with an exhibition of yet another Soham Vision and crept out again.

This vision, as opposed to the visions we have had in the past and the health check of a few years ago, is the latest proposal for the future of our town.

The main thing that leapt out was the allocation of the land between Brook Street and the lode for housing. Given the fact that the water level of the lode is at least at the same level as the land you may wonder if this is the driest site available, particularly if it is built up so that there is no land to soak up the rain.

These concerns were voiced by the few people at the exhibition when I had a look. The poor turnout could be explained by the poor publicity beforehand and the fact that it was held during working hours on a working day.

With the number of halls that are, apparently, available in Soham according to the survey conducted when the church hall controversy was raging it should surely have been possible for the council to have put the proposals in front of the locals at a more convenient time.

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JAKE the spaniel, having got over his Valentine’s Day disappointment, is quite excited about a possible opportunity he has just heard of.

Councillor John Powley, who has served the town on Cambridgeshire County Council for 16 years, has just announced that he will not be seeking re-election in May.

Jake reckons that he might like to have a go at representing Soham in Shire Hall. He doesn’t think that he could take over Cllr Powley’s role as chairman of the council and definitely won’t emulate his time as an MP, but he reckons he could sit on a few committees and eat a few biscuits.

Hang on, council budgets are being squeezed all the time, there may not be any biscuits.

Perhaps Jake will stay as he is!


IF Jake changes his mind and decides to have a go on the council he could do worse than have a word with the highways department.

The sign at the northern end of Orchard Row must be the least informative road sign anywhere. In fact it is just three pieces of wood with nothing written on them.

Fine for those of us who know where we are, but a pain for delivery drivers and possibly a danger if an ambulance can’t find its way.


ANYONE with a yen to become self-employed has a golden opportunity at the moment.

Soham Fish Bar, which recently changed hands and underwent some refurbishment, is up for sale.

It might not be quite the opportunity you may be looking for, given the number of outlets supplying take-away hot food in Soham, but all you need is a new approach.

Perhaps USA-sized portions could take off!


WE are told that the budget per pupil in Cambridgeshire is the least in all the authorities in the country - so the building of the new school in the Shade must be some kind of achievement.

We’ve not heard any more of the possible unexploded bomb on the site, so that may save a few pounds.

At the moment it looks like a bit of a muddy mess, but as soon as the weather dries up it will be amazing how quickly the new building takes shape.

It will have to if it is to open in September.


THIS week Jake is walking towards town on a road named after our neighbouring village. He passes a close that is named after an industrial building and then sees one named after something that could drive the first on if it was in France.

Two weeks ago Jake was walking along Paddock Street and came across St Felix House.