Truro Town Deal board agrees business cases: Next step for transformational projects

Truro Town Deal board agrees business cases:

Next step for transformational projects in the city

Truro is a step closer to releasing funding from the Government’s Towns Fund for projects to transform the city’s economy.

Following an extraordinary meeting (Wednesday, April 27), which saw the review of business cases submitted by the organisations behind the projects, Truro Town Deal Board gave its unanimous approval on the seven projects put forward.

Each of the core projects presented in the City’s Town Investment Plan will go through to the next stage of their development and feasibility assessment prior to receiving sign off from Cornwall Council as the accountable body. Following this approval, the finalised Truro Town Deal programme will be submitted to Government during July.

However, since the submission of the Town Investment Plan, and as part of the drafting of the projects’ business cases, a potential overspend of £900,000 has been identified due to the steep rising prices of building materials. As a result, further work is required to refine the costing of the construction phase, meaning the funding allocations could be revised and projects adjusted before submission to Government.

Chair of Truro Town Deal Board, Alan Stanhope, said: “We’re delighted to have met this important milestone in delivering the Truro Town Deal programme and maximising this funding opportunity. It’s been a challenging time to work up the finer detail of the projects, against rising costs of construction materials and balancing the budget.

“We’re hopeful that the next stages will run smoothly, leading to a release of the funding during Autumn. That’s when the real work can start in delivering these transformational projects which we are looking to see all completed by 2026.”

Two changes to how the projects sit within the portfolio were agreed at the meeting. A sub-project to refurbish Old Bakery Studios, which previously sat within Truro Harbour & Lemon Quays, has been moved to New Life for City Buildings.

The lifting bridge connecting Lighterage Quay at Newham with Boscawen Park – considered a “flagship” aspect of the Town Investment Plan – has been moved to the Truro Harbour and Lemon Quays project.

The project portfolio for Truro Town Deal is:

  • Truro Harbour and Lemon Quay – to include lifting bridge
  • Boscawen Sport and Recreation Hub
  • Truro Community Hub
  • New Life for City Buildings – to include Old Bakery Studios
  • Green Transport
  • Royal Cornwall Museum
  • The Hive at Pydar

Next steps for Truro Town Deal

In August last year, the Town Deal Board signed a Heads of Terms agreement with the Government and Cornwall Council.

Since then, work has been going on behind the scenes to develop business cases for each of the projects put forward in the Town Investment Plan. These cover aspects such as detailed budgets, potential impact on the city’s economy and outline timeline for delivery.

 Now Truro Town Deal Board has approved business cases and funding allocations, the portfolio of projects moves to Cornwall Council as accountable body for further assessment prior sign off through Section 151 processes.

Cornwall Council will then submit the finalised Truro Town Deal Programme and associated projects during July to meet the Government’s deadline. Once approved by Government, funds could be released early Autumn 2022.

Truro is one of 101 towns, and four in Cornwall, selected to bid for the Government’s £3.6 billion Towns Fund which aims to drive economic regeneration.

The Moresk Centre opens its doors thanks to Truro Town Deal

From left to right: Mayor Truro, Steven Webb, Truro town clerk Roger Gazzard, Moresk Centre trustees Joff Phipps and Ita Renshaw.

The Moresk Centre opens its doors thanks to Truro Town Deal

One of the projects to benefit from Truro Town Deal’s Accelerator Fund has opened its doors to the public with an open day.

The Moresk Centre welcomed members of the community on Thursday 21 October to see its refurbished rooms and facilities.

The building, previously used as a day centre for older people, has received just over £100,000 from the Government’s Towns Fund Accelerator Fund.

The investment was put towards new heating, roofing insulation, electrical installation, decoration, carpeting, furniture and updated kitchen facilities.

It also includes new audio-visual equipment and smart TV screens within meeting rooms, making the centre fit for purpose for meetings and events.

The refurbishment was arranged by Truro City Council and the Moresk Centre will be managed by the Truro Churches Trust, a not for profit charity established initially by Churches Together in Truro.

Trustee Ita Renshaw said: “This funding has enabled us to offer a space that has appeal for a wide variety of community groups. We had a vision for a space that could bring people together, small and large groups alike, and this funding has enabled that to happen.”

Mayor of Truro Steven Webb attended the open day and said: “It’s an amazing transformation to a light, airy space that so many people in the community can now make space of. The new AV equipment brings it up to date.

“We have so many incredible grass-roots organisations in Truro, I hope they consider using the Moresk Centre to support their work.”

The Moresk Centre has three rooms available to book, seating 10, 15 and 70 respectively. For more information, go to: https://www.moreskcentre.org

Truro Town Deal’s Accelerator Funds making an impact in the city

Pic courtesy of Truro BID
Pic courtesy of Truro BID

Truro Town Deal’s Accelerator Funds making an impact in the city 

Truro Town Deal is making a positive impact on the city through a number of improvement projects delivered through the Accelerator Fund.

Announced last September, the Government’s Towns Fund awarded up to £750,000 for projects that aim to regenerate and boost economic growth.

The board went on to secure £23.6 million in April this year for projects to be delivered up until 2026.

But Accelerator projects being delivered by Truro City Council and Truro Business Improvement District are already making their mark – from event equipment to seating and planting, bike stands, notice boards plus a revamped community centre for all to enjoy.

Carole Theobald, Chair of Truro Town Deal Board, said: “What’s brilliant about these first funded projects is that they are driving footfall, supporting the community and making our city centre a better place for everyone to enjoy.

“Some are highly visible, such as Christmas illuminations, market equipment and staging, whilst others are simply about improving our facilities, such as hand dryers and seating – each are playing their part in regenerating Truro.”

Projects funded by the Town Deal Accelerator Fund are:

The Moresk Centre

A former day centre on St Clements Street has been refurbished and has reopened as the Moresk Centre, creating a community space available to all.

The refurbishment was led by Truro City Council and the centre will now be managed by the Truro Churches Trust, with four different rooms available to book.

An open day is being held on Thursday 21 October, from 10am to 4pm, where people can meet the new team running the Moresk Centre and view the facilities.

Mobile Stage

High profile events in Truro City Centre including the Tour of Britain, Black Voices Cornwall and upcoming Truro Food Festival have all benefited from the purchase of a mobile stage through the Accelerator Fund.

City Centre Improvements and infrastructure

Improved seating has been brought to the city centre by Truro City Council – including some of the combined planters and seats in use as part of Boscawen Street’s pedestrianisation trial.

New benches were installed around the town centre during the first two weeks of September and notice boards and cycle hoops are due to be installed in the near future

New hand driers have been installed in public toilets, as well as a new electrical box on Lemon Quay to provide power for public events

Roger Gazzard, Town Clerk at Truro City Council, said: “The city council met with stakeholders to discuss and identify areas in the town where funds from the regeneration project would be most beneficial. The town centre has benefited from a variety of new equipment, and it has been positive to see visitors and residents using the new seating to enjoy the town; especially on warm sunny days.

Street Market Equipment

The Accelerator Fund purchased market gazebos and equipment, enabling market organisers to offer affordable pitch prices. These are in use for one-day markets such as Antiques and Collectables, taking place alongside Truro Farmers Market, further enhancing the market offer on Lemon Quay.

The equipment has also enabled Truro BID to offer free of charge community stalls at local events, such as Children’s Day during the summer holidays – driving footfall into the city centre. 

Christmas illuminations

The Accelerator Fund supported the installation of an illuminated Cathedral on Trafalagar roundabout, welcoming people to the city, as well as 100 reindeer models for shop displays.

Alun Jones, BID manager, said: “We received great feedback over Christmas 2020 about the new illuminated Cathedral on Trafalgar roundabout. This year we have further plans in place to install additional festive lights in secondary areas around the city centre.

We’re also offering retailers and businesses a loan of our eye-catching illuminated reindeer for window displays, for Christmas lights switch-on on 19 November.

“We’re delighted to see the various Accelerator Fund projects being delivered, complementing our high street and brilliant businesses.”

Truro is one of 101 towns, and four in Cornwall, selected to bid for the Government’s £3.6 billion Towns Fund.

Following the submission of a Town Investment Plan detailing six ambitious regeneration projects, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced Truro’s award of £23.6 million in April.

 

An Update from our Board – August 2021

ROBERT JENRICK MP and the Truro Town Fund board.
ROBERT JENRICK MP and the Truro Town Fund board.
Members of Truro Town Board meet with Secretary of State Robert Jenrick MP at Worth's Quay, Truro in September 2020. Pic courtesy of Cherilyn Mackrory MP.

An update from our board: August 2021

It’s been a busy few months behind the scenes since Truro’s deal of £23.6 million was announced by the Prime Minister in early April.

The Board has been working closely with Cornwall Council, which is the Government’s appointed accountable body, to work out how we can put our plans into motion. We are also keeping in contact with the Town Deal Boards for Camborne, St Ives and Penzance so we can share learnings and maximise this investment opportunity.

Since the announcement, we have formally accepted the Government’s offer and earlier this month, signed off a Heads of Terms agreement.

We are now working up business cases, a more detailed budget and timeline of how projects will be delivered. We have until August 2022 to achieve this, but we hope to deliver this sooner.

There will be further opportunities over the next 12 months and beyond for people in the community to engage with our projects and offer feedback to shape our plans.

Thank you to everyone for their support so far. This investment really is for the connected river city of Truro and we’re excited about the impact it will make on our city.

Alan Stanhope

Vice Chair, Truro Town Deal

Prime Minister announces Truro’s award of £23.6 million from Towns Fund

Prime Minister Boris Johnson visits traders at Lemon Street Market as Truro's £23.6 million Town Deal is announced.

Prime Minister announces Truro’s award of £23.6 million from Towns Fund

Prime Minister Boris Johnson visited Truro on 7 April to announce the £23.6 million Deal for Truro will help transform Cornwall’s capital into a Connected River City and support its vision of becoming a modern economic, cultural and green capital for its residents and the wider community by 2030.

The Deal will breathe new life into Truro’s waterfront by creating new spaces for business, vibrant and green event areas, promenades and new ferry terminals with berthing facilities and pontoons.

The investment will also boost its cultural and tourism offer by transforming some of its historic buildings into thriving businesses. The creation of a ‘go to destination’ in Boscawen Park will include a new ‘winter garden’ to build on Truro’s national reputation as a city of bloom.

Green and sustainable travel are at the heart of these plans, connecting key locations and attractions with accessible walking and cycling routes including a proposed new bridge between areas currently isolated from each other. The funding will also help convert some of Truro’s unused buildings into much-needed new homes.

Carole Theobald, chair of Truro Towns Fund Board, said: “We’re absolutely over the moon to have secured this level of funding for Truro and that the Prime Minister has recognised the potential of our city.

“It was a tremendous amount of work to develop our Town Investment Plan, led by a board of volunteers and supported by a small team. I’m so proud to have been part of this bid, which will pave the way for projects set to transform Truro’s future.”

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “We are determined to level up across the entire country, and the Deal we’re announcing for Truro will help to unleash its tremendous potential.

“Through a range of innovative projects including greener transport links and the restoration and renewal of spaces in the city centre, we will be able to rejuvenate the local economy, support businesses, boost connectivity and create new jobs.”

Today’s investment is the 53rd deal to be announced from the Towns Fund and is part of comprehensive action by the government.

Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick said: “This government is levelling up towns and cities across the country by building stronger and more resilient local economies, boosting prosperity and opportunity in our communities, and helping them build back better from the pandemic.

“This Deal is great news for Truro and the county. By revitalising the waterfront, breathing new life into unused historic buildings and investing in new cultural and tourist attractions, it will make a huge difference to the local economy and create much needed jobs and homes.”

Member of Parliament for Truro and Truro Town Deal board member Cherilyn Mackrory said: “I am delighted to have worked with the Truro Town Team and partners, including Cornwall Council, to bring this successful bid forward and it is brilliant to see the Prime Minister visit Truro today to see the plans for himself and provide his own support for them.

“Proof again that Cornwall is at the heart of the Government’s levelling up agenda and I look forward to continuing to work with all concerned to make these plans for our great city a reality.”

 

Truro submits £25 million bid for Government’s Towns Fund

Truro submits £25 million bid for Government’s Towns Fund

A bold vision for Truro as a “Connected River City” has been presented to Government as the Towns Fund Board submits its bid for up to £25 million.

A package of six ambitious projects, chosen for their potential to bring an economic boost, were submitted within an investment plan to the £3.6 billion Towns Fund on Friday (January 29).

Projects were chosen for their potential to transform Truro, affordability and deliverability – all must be delivered by March 2026.

During community consultation, more than 450 pieces of feedback were received including letters of support from key businesses and organisations backing the portfolio. Popular ideas included reworking Lemon Quay, green transport, revitalising empty buildings and a new community hub.

Chair of Truro Towns Fund board Carole Theobald said: “Submitting the Town Investment Plan is a major milestone in securing this funding for our city and represent months of work by our team and board of volunteers.

“We’re incredibly proud of our proposals which show we are thinking big – positioning Truro as a confident and connected river city with a prosperous future.”

Six projects selected for the TIP are:

  1. Truro Harbour and Lemon Quay: reinvigorating our neglected waterfront and community spaces to create vibrant, attractive, weather-proof and green event areas reconnecting our people with our water and attracting new audiences from all over Cornwall.
  2. Truro Community Hub: a new community space based in the repurposed Wesley Hall, part of Truro Methodist Church where all residents can meet, learn new skills, access support, volunteer, gain work experience, meet employers, enjoy leisure and cultural activities and feel part of our evolving city.
  3. Green Transport: Connecting Truro City Centre with its residential and business communities by supporting people to change how they move around Truro by widening their healthy and clean travel choices. The project includes a key cycle link between Threemilestone and Truro and an iconic lifting bridge between Newham and Boscawen Park and seeks to encourage people to walk and cycle for short trips and lead to a less polluted, less congested city with reduced traffic noise and more people centred streets.
  4. The Hive at Pydar: investment towards a new building bringing together education, research, innovation, business, entertainment and community facilities in a unique environment, and will become a hub for the creative industries, creating jobs and wealth, while ensuring top talent stays in Cornwall.
  5. New Life for City Centre Buildings: repurpose Truro buildings, maximising space and enabling flexible usage to ensure our buildings are future proofed for modern day use.
  6. Boscawen Sport and Recreation Hub: create a ‘go-to destination’ in Boscawen Park providing Truro residents and visitors of all ages with new leisure and recreational opportunities across a range of indoor and outdoor facilities.

Truro is one of four towns selected in Cornwall to bid for the fund, alongside Camborne, Penzance and St. Ives.

Over the next 2-3 months, Government will score the Town Investment Plans against strict criteria. If successful, Truro will be offered upto £25 million.

The Towns Fund Board and team will then be expected to draw up detailed business cases for the project portfolio whilst driving additional community engagement throughout.  

The final stage is to agree final funds and reach a “Town Deal” releasing the investment to start projects.

Read the Town Investment Plan

Read the Community Engagement Report

Truro Towns Fund awarded £750,000 for immediate regeneration projects

Threemilestone community center regeneration.
Threemilestone community center regeneration.
Artist's impression of Threemilestone Community Centre extension. Illustration by Poynton Bradbury Winter Cole architects.

Truro Towns Fund awarded £750,000 for Immediate Regeneration Projects

City centre cycle parks, “Light up Truro”, Community Centres and Event equipment to be supported by fund

Truro has been awarded an initial £750,000 from the government’s Towns Fund for an array of projects aimed at regeneration and boosting economic growth.

Bike parking across the city, event equipment, refurbished community centres and sports facilities are among the projects approved for the Accelerated Capital funding.

Inspired by the annual City of Lights community art project and lantern parade, a festive trail of light-up installations across Truro’s shop windows this winter season is another key project to be given a welcome cash boost.

It’s the first funding to be confirmed as Truro Town Deal board is busy shaping themes to form an investment plan to bid for at least another £25 million for regeneration projects.

Truro is one of 101 towns to be selected to bid for the £3.6 billion Towns Fund set up by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government.

Carole Theobald, chair of Truro Town Deal board, said: “This first award of funding is incredibly welcome, and gives a flavour of the further projects we’ll be bringing to life in the coming weeks as part of our larger bid.

“We selected each of these successful projects for their ability to strengthen our communities, improve our city as a place to live and work, as well as drive footfall and visitor numbers.

“Several are set to be delivered by the end of this year, so it’s exciting that this funding will have an impact on Truro very soon.” 

Projects to be awarded funding under the Accelerated Capital fund include: 

“Light Up Truro” £132,000 (total project cost £140,000)

Bringing a festive trail of illuminated installations and displays to up to 100 of Truro’s shop windows to attract visitors and build on the success of City of Lights. The funding will go towards technology to be used throughout the year.

City centre infrastructure: £198,000

Cycle parking throughout the city centre, Boscawen and Hendra parks. Trial of movable bike ports to test different locations around the city, plus moveable cycle parking for use during events.

Upgrading existing seating, planters, bike storage and other street furniture and improved disabled access through the city.

Mobile Stage and Performance Equipment: £82,000

Purchase of a mobile stage, lighting and sound equipment to enable events to take place at locations around the city, whilst maintaining social distancing.

Boscawen Park Pavilion: £60,000 against total project value of £580,000.

Redevelopment of tennis courts, new pavilion building and café, accessible toilets, information point and bike hire.

Street Markets: £60,000

Funding for 12 gazebos, power and lighting plus storage and transportation units to create space for up to 24 market stalls within Truro city centre.

Threemilestone Community Centre: £107,000 (within total project value of £600,000)

Extending the community centre with a porch and extension to cater for increasing demand. Creating a physical link with the GP surgery and installation of bike hub facilities to encourage cycling.

St Clements Street Centre: £110,000 (within total project value of £120,00).

To return St Clement Street Centre into use as a community centre, including refurbishment and building management, so the building can meet the needs of the community, especially younger and older people.

For more information, go to:

www.trurotownfund.com

First look at vibrant projects that could be unlocked by Truro Towns Fund bid

Truro Quays Harbour village potential project diagram.
Truro Quays Harbour village potential project diagram.
Artist's impression by Poynton Bradbury Winter Cole

First look at vibrant potential projects that could be unlocked by Truro Towns Fund bid

The first images of potential projects that could be unlocked by up to £25 million of Government investment have been unveiled by Truro Town Deal Board.

 

Upgraded indoor and outdoor sports facilities at Boscawen Park and a cycling network including a new bridge between Boscawen and Newham business district, first proposed by the Truro Loops project, are among the concepts being explored through the funding opportunity.

An artist’s impression has also been released of Truro Quays Harbour Village, which could involve restoration of buildings and introduction of a sill to retain water, allowing berthing for up to 50 boats.

Driven by feedback from local people and businesses, a series of working groups under the Truro Town Deal board are now developing projects around a number of themes. These will be presented in a Town Investment Plan, due to be submitted to the Government Towns Fund in January 2021.

A new website has been developed – www.trurotownfund.com – where local people and businesses can give their feedback on the vision and potential projects

Chair of Truro Town Deal Board Carole Theobald said: “We’re moving forward with project themes and starting to bring them to life with artist’s impressions. The best answers for local projects will come from local people, that’s why we’re listening to people living, working and visiting Truro – your feedback is important.

“Not all potential projects we share for consultation will make the final Town Investment Plan, however. We’ll be combing your feedback whilst weighing up which interventions are most eligible for the funding and will deliver most economic impact for Truro.”

One project ready to receive feedback is a revamped Boscawen Park, including:

  • A business sports and activity hub, to include an indoor children’s play area, climbing wall, fitness suite.
  • A botanical house and horticultural showcase, based on a partnership between Truro City Council and local businesses.
  • Improved changing facilities
  • Hospitality area including a bar and café
  • Extended play area with more natural play
  • Hard surfaced area for bootcamp/outdoor fitness classes.
  • Water jets and Splash play area
  • Waterfront park space at the South end of the park, looking down Truro River
  • Enhanced performance space for outdoor events
  • All weather pitch

Nigel King, business owner and Truro Town Deal board member, is leading the Boscawen Park working group. He said: “Boscawen Park is already a hugely popular, attractive part of our city. These ideas aim to bring more people, offer better sports and recreational facilities for all weather and all year round – it’s for the people of Truro but we think visitors will enjoy it too.

“Harbour Village is a potential game changer. We’re celebrating the historic harbour whilst creating viable business opportunities and jobs. These two projects work well together to create a real destination not just for Truro but Cornwall as a whole, attracting national and international visitors.

“These plans are not set in stone, but are blueprints for how we can start to transform our city.”

A number of other projects are on the table for discussion, but not all will make the final investment plan. Current themes include:

Sustainable transport: Bringing connectivity to Truro from Boscawen Park to Lemon Quay and the city centre through cycle routes. Set to combine work under the Truro Loops project, including a bridge to link Boscawen Park to Newham.

IT connectivity: Bringing 5G to Truro, including the railway station and Newham, including demonstrator applications of 5G and a potential for an experiential app. Exploring options for a 5G bubble at Newham.

Repurposing empty space: Use space that’s currently empty or derelict by combining or repurposing retail and residential buildings in the city centre.

Lemon Quay: Upgrading the piazza to improve connection with the river plus improved planting, seating, lighting and shop signage, offering a community and enhanced event space including under-cover area.

Business Enterprise and Skills: Working with businesses in Truro city centre and Newham to identify projects, such as installation of a 5G bubble and marine hub with improved slipway and boatyard. Partnering with education providers such as Truro & Penwith College to develop projects that upskill our local workforce and residents.

Culture and Heritage: Ideas being developed by partners such as Hall for Cornwall, Truro Cathedral and Royal Cornwall Museum include a shared rehearsal and exhibits space, as well as a 5G app depicting Truro’s past and present.

Image by Mei Loci
Truro Quays Harbour village potential project diagram.
Artist's impression by Poynton Bradbury Winter Cole