Eddington drone shot from the north - Felipe Franciosi

Eddington Handbook

A guide for residents of Eddington to the many places, processes, practices and policies that are uniquely relevant to this development. This remains a work-in-progress - please contribute any corrections.

Who does what and how to get help

There is a jumble of organisations each taking responsibility for some parts of Eddington. This can make it tricky for residents to get the help they need - particularly for those new to the area, city or country.

While the ERA is unlikely to be the best first port of call, if you have difficulty getting a satisfactory response from any of the contacts below please let us know. Likewise, if you have a local issue that isn’t clearly the responsibility of one of the below, get in touch.

See details of our many providers and for what each is responsible

Portal Estate Management is a wrapper-company owned by the University which deals with issues relating to most shared public spaces in Eddington. This includes all roads, pavements, cycle paths and hard and soft landscaping. They are responsible for collecting the Estate Service Charge and spending it on local maintenance, improvement and contingency planning. Though they subcontract the billing to Vital and the execution of estate management tasks to Mears. Portal can sometimes be a useful first contact for services commissioned by other parties below, such as bin collections, playing fields, play parks and questions around covenants.

Lodge Property Services is a wrapper-company owned by the University which manages tenancy in the University’s so-called “Key Worker Housing”. This includes all properties in Eddington which are owned by the University and let out exclusively to their employees through their Accommodation Service. They effectively fill the role of an in-house estate agent, but maintenance of the property, its contents and shared internal spaces is done by Portal.

Core Sustainable Heat Management is a wrapper-company owned by the University responsible for heat network infrastructure in Eddington and the energy centre on Burkitt Lane. Their responsibility ends before the Heat Interface Unit within each property. Consumer billing and much of the network’s maintenance is subcontracted to Vital Energi.

Vital Energi are an energy management company that run our energy centre and maintain our local heat network infrastructure as the current contract holder under Core. They also provide customer billing services to Portal and Core, for Estate Service Charge and heat usage respectively.

Mears Group are a national housing services operator. They provide estate management services around Eddington as the current contract holder under Portal. They also do property management for Lodge, and both of these work packages form part of a broader contract with the University outside of Eddington.

Nurture Landscapes are a grounds maintenance company subcontracted by Mears to look after communal planting and hard landscaping.

Elite Parking Management are a parking management company subcontracted by Mears to handle parking enforcement and fines.

Encore Estates provide property management services for several of the privately-owned apartment blocks. They maintain communal, non-public areas such as entrances, stairs, elevators and garages as well as any garden areas belonging to the building. Leaseholders pay a building management fee for these services in addition to the estate service charge.

Hill Residential are builders of private homes in the areas of Eddington marketed as “Knights’ Park” and “Rubicon”. They are responsible for snagging of their newbuild properties and the delivery of shared spaces around those buildings to Portal. The boundary between shared spaces under Portal’s control and those still controlled by Hill is not well defined as it gradually moves from the latter to the former.

Girton College manages Swirles Court (bounded by Turing Way, Pheasant Drive and the Ridgeway) as accommodation for mainly postgraduate students remote from the main college site at the north end of Ridgeway.

The University of Cambridge created Eddington to support their growth plan and migration from the city centre. Their Estates division is responsible for continued planning and delivery of the development.

Councils are a uniquely complicated aspect of Eddington, sitting as we do across the city boundary and a parish boundary. Due to the private nature of the shared spaces and the non-adopted status of roads in Eddington they have fewer responsibilities here than elsewhere in the UK.

South Cambridge District Council

Cambridge City Council

Girton Parish Council

Cambridgeshire County Council

Transport, roads and parking

Local Bus Services in Eddington are provided by Whippet’s Universal bus routes U1 and U2. These are subsidised by the University for all users regardless of affiliation. Residents frequently report delayed and cancelled buses at both peak and non-peak times. Reportedly the official Whippet app provides more accurate live bus timing information than is displayed on the bus stop screens. More direct bus routes to the town centre are available at the Madingley Park & Ride to the south and on Huntingdon Road to the north.

Car Parking is available on-street throughout Eddington and normally requires registration during daytime hours. The spaces are for public use but residents and their visitors can access a lower rate and longer stays. Free parking is available in a few places, each with some restriction (see details)

See options for how and where to park

Anyone can register their car using the JustPark app or one of the central parking machines. Once you register your visit, the first hour is free and then it’s roughly £2 per hour thereafter. Maximum parking time limits apply via this method, normally of two or four hours. Full information on the Cashless on-site parking info sheet.

Residents and their visitors parking in these public spaces can use a separate system to register for a 24 period, and for a reduced fee (flat £2.80 at the time of writing). Connect Cashless Parking is the provider and they offer both phone and app-based payment, location code 2604. A limit of 100 days per year is applied per household to prevent a small number of residents from monopolising the limited spaces.

90 minutes of free parking without registration is available for users of Sainsbury’s and Argos in their underground car park. 18 hours of free parking without registration is available at Madingley Park & Ride.

A Local Travel Survey is carried out by the University every year. It surveys residents, workers, shoppers and families with kids at the local school about their use of different modes of transport. This helps to account for the growing and changing transport profile of the area. Read the 2023 summary report

Through-Traffic remains a concern for residents, with ongoing issues around speeding, crossings and road safety. With the closure of Storey’s Way to through traffic, Eddington Avenue/Turing Way comprise the only connection between Huntingdon Road and Madingley Road arterial routes between the historic centre and Madingley village. Bollard control at the south end of Eddington Avenue protects the central block from much of this traffic, but has been frequently out of service due to repeated vehicle collisions. A replacement ANPR system is to be commissioned by the end of 2024.

Water, waste, heating, internet, mobile etc.

Water is provided by Cambridge Water. Eddington is built on a perched water table with the increased flooding risk being offset by swales and other surface water collection that drains to the lake at Brook Leys in the south. The facility to recycle grey water from this lake back to residences was planned but is not yet active, apparently pending a legislation change.

Rubbish & Recycling is collected by South Cambs District council from our communal bins. Some green waste recycling is available near central blocks, but not site-wide. Bulky waste which does not fit into the communal bins should be taken to the Milton Waste Recycling Centre or a collection arranged with the council. Fly-tipping around the bins should be reported to Portal, who maintain a page of detailed information about waste management here (requires a resident login).

See map of green bin locations and details of free charity collection for household items

Anglo Doorstep Collections operate a free collection service for charity donations. Clothing and household items in good condition can be donated by booking a collection.

Green bin locations are marked below with an “X”. green bin locations

A Heat Network provides hot water to most properties in Eddington for both space heating and water heating. The distributing network itself is a closed system of pipes connecting an HIU in each building to the Energy Centre on Burkitt Lane. It is managed by Core with maintenance and billing provided by Vital Energi. The system is powered by commercial gas boilers after the original plan to run a combined heat and power plant proved infeasible. A more sustainable approach is desired by the University but has not yet been identified.

See details of network design, resident responsibilities and heat pricing

The distribution network is a series of insulated, underground pipes which carry water at around 90°C. The circuit is closed: heat exchangers in each property’s HIU raise the temperature of either their incoming fresh water or separately sealed underfloor circuits as needed. All water pumped out of the Energy Centre ultimately returns there - it does not come out of residents’ taps nor does it flow through their underfloor heating circuits.

Core’s equipment stops at the heat network pipes that enter each building. Homeowners are responsible for their HIU, which they own. The standing charge includes a two-yearly service from Core (for which access must be allowed). Underfloor heating and other domestic plumbing is also beyond the scope of Core’s responsibilities.

Usage is charged for based on the difference in temperature between incoming and outgoing network water. As of early 2024, heat network billing is not covered by energy price caps though this effect is offset by the commercial gas purchasing policy of the University, which acts to hold input costs relatively stable.

Internet Connectivity is available many providers on the OpenReach fibre network. Many properties also have fibre connections to Virgin Media. Eduroam is available in some central areas but not within every building.

See advice for short-term contracts and renewal

Residents on 12-month tenancies have reported difficulty finding ISPs offering contracts of less than 18 months. EU law requires consumers be offered the option of contract lasting no longer than 12 months, although some providers make these hard to find. Renewal of internet contracts is governed by Ofcom’s General Conditions which means ISPs have to get the customer’s consent before renewing a fixed commitment period.

Mobile Phone signal in Eddington is strong in central areas but is more limited in the north and in the shadow of larger buildings. The insulating materials used in most buildings here block mobile networks - as a result many residents have to enable WiFi Calling on their handset or change provider to one which supports it in order to make and receive calls indoors.

School, nursery and families

University of Cambridge Primary School is a new state school built to support the population growth in North West Cambridge. In 2024 it will have a school role of 656 children across a single pre-school class (for children turning 4 during that academic year) and three primary classes for reception through Year 6 (ages ~5 to ~11).

Bright Horizons Day Nursery

Secondary School

Teddington Playgroup

Health, fitness and wellbeing

Our Local Doctor’s Surgery is Huntingdon Road Surgery until such time as the health centre is occupied. It also has a satellite surgery in Girton.

No Pharmacy exists in Eddington, nor can residents use the dispensary in Girton run by Huntingdon Road Surgery. The nearest pharmacy is on Histon Road. Plans for a local pharmacy seem contingent on there being a doctor’s surgery here first, at which point Sainsbury’s have indicated they may add one in-store.

The Health Centre is at at the south end of Eddington Avenue (map), near Sainsbury’s car park entrance. The unit is empty and its interior unfinished. Negotiations with the NHS to find an occupant have been very slow. In early 2024 Portal said a proposal was being considered for a multi-use health facility - which means not exclusively a doctor’s office but with GP provision among other health services. The proposal targeted an opening in mid 2025, we are told.

Sports Fields and Cricket Pitch

Children’s Playgrounds

Shared spaces and estate management

Estate Service Charge

Safety and Security remains a key concern for our residents. While Cambridge is a relatively low-crime city, bike thefts and antisocial behaviour are common. In Eddington it is likely because this is a quiet area with lots of public space and a late-opening, licensed supermarket. Residents are urged to report all incidents and suspicious behaviour to the police - and by calling 999 if urgent e.g. a crime in progress. As a new borough of the city, sustained reporting of undesirable activity is needed to guide the allocation of police resources.

See how Portal, Encore and the University fit into local safety planning

Portal is responsible for the physical security of some areas of site, including commercial units, University buildings and communal bike sheds. Encore is similarly in charge of shared spaces in leasehold properties like garages and stairwells. However, residents are encouraged to consider these areas public when making security decisions as it is difficult to prevent criminals from gaining access to such shared spaces.

The University has its own security service as well as CCTV monitoring in the central area of Eddington, which they plan to extend to cover entrance/exit routes. They have a published security policy and antisocial behaviour policy for the area.

Local shops, amenities and facilities

Eddington Square

Hyatt Commercial Units

Storey’s Field Centre

Renting in the University’s key worker accommodation

Freehold and leasehold privately owned properties

Councils and democratic representation

Development, growth and future plans