St Austell Townscape Heritage Project

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St Austell Townscape Heritage scheme is now complete.

The £1.5m National Lottery funded initiative started in 2018 and was led and managed by Cornwall Council’s Strategic Historic Environment Team Senior Officer (Built Environment) in collaboration with St Austell Town Council and St Austell BID.

It brought in £527,769 private investment from an initial contribution from Cornwall Council of £50,000 and funded twelve high quality historic building renovations and three public realm schemes in the town.

Eight of these were clustered around Holy Trinity Church to maximise impact.

Eleven shopfronts and signs were improved, six with innovative use of ceramics reflecting

St Austell Townscape Heritage scheme is now complete.

The £1.5m National Lottery funded initiative started in 2018 and was led and managed by Cornwall Council’s Strategic Historic Environment Team Senior Officer (Built Environment) in collaboration with St Austell Town Council and St Austell BID.

It brought in £527,769 private investment from an initial contribution from Cornwall Council of £50,000 and funded twelve high quality historic building renovations and three public realm schemes in the town.

Eight of these were clustered around Holy Trinity Church to maximise impact.

Eleven shopfronts and signs were improved, six with innovative use of ceramics reflecting the town’s historic links with clay.

Three vacant buildings were brought back in to use and nine underused buildings improved.

Four buildings subsequently received Cornish Building Group design awards.

In addition to the building projects the scheme funded an interactive smartphone app for use on heritage trails in the town, a heritage book produced with input from local schools, provided a series of training days and workshops in traditional skills for 109 local college students and professionals, carried out performance monitoring on natural breathable insulation and high quality timber paint and produced building surveys with local volunteers.

Projects funded through the scheme were informed by shopfront design guidance and an updated conservation area appraisal and management plan produced during the scheme’s development phase.


Projects completed:

  • St Austell Market House
  • 1-3 Victoria Place (Day Lewis Pharmacy)
  • 32/32a Fore Street (Hays Travel)
  • The Trinity Centre, 3 Market Street (former Hop and Vine)
  • 2-6 Bodmin Road
  • Drinking Fountain
  • Café Tengo
  • Former Tregarne Sunday School
  • 3 Fore Street
  • 1 Vicarage Hill
  • Tregonissey House
  • 9 Church Street
  • Moustache Jacks, 2 Biddicks Court
  • Level access scheme for Trinity Centre and Market House
  • End of scheme plaque/water bottle unit
  • Completed Projects

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    St Austell Market House

    A grant offer of £114,145 was made in August 2019. First phase works included refurbished first floor windows, new clear glazed ground floor openings and removal of a suspended ceiling to reveal an original granite arched ceiling. A new artist designed ceramic hanging sign was made with input from local college students. Bespoke ceramic planters were installed in front of the clear ground floor glazing.

    An additional grant of £16,355.93 was made on 5th August 2021 for multi coloured architectural lighting to highlight the exposed internal granite arches. A new better quality handrail was installed to the front steps as was a new level granite threshold to the Town Museum. The first phase of work was successfully launched with assistance from Cultural Recovery Fund on August 21st 2021. These works won a commendation in the 2022 Cornish Buildings Group Awards.


    1-3 Victoria Place (Day Lewis Pharmacy)

    A grant offer of £54,228 was made on 16th September 2020 for a new shopfront, new ground floor flat window and cast rainwater goods. Additional works of £7,130.52 were agreed through a variation on 14th January 2021. These included repair and overhaul of all 10 front elevation sash windows, new sash window to the side elevation and new cast rainwater goods.


    32/32a Fore Street (Hays Travel)

    A grant offer of 13,808 was made on 27th October 2020 for leadwork repairs to the barrel roofed dormer window and parapet, window repairs and external painting, picking out detailing in contrasting colours. An additional grant of £11,864.93 was made on 17th March 2021 for replacement windows, parapet leadwork and structural repairs. The building is now structurally sound, weatherproof and occupied.


    The Trinity Centre, 3 Market Street (former Hop and Vine)

    A grant of £91,502 was made on 17th December 2020 for a new shopfront and signage, window refurbishment, reroofing and structural repairs. An additional grant of £7,294 was made on 31st August 2022 for secondary glazing to repaired windows. The building is now fully occupied. A ceramic tiled mural was installed to the shopfront.


    2-6 Bodmin Road

    A grant offer of £53,535 was made on 3rd June 2020 for a new shopfront with bespoke artist designed stallriser tiling, traditional sash windows to the front elevation and painted external walls. Breathable natural internal insulation was installed to upper storey flats. An additional grant of £13,655.89 was made on 10th August 2021 for unforeseen structural repairs on rusted column bases and mosaic tiling to them. The works received a commendation in the 2023 Cornish Building Group Awards.


    Drinking Fountain

    A £50,000 funding contribution was made for repairs to the Drinking Fountain on Holy Trinity churchyard wall. This included new cast finials, realigning the backing pieces and installing a new lantern and base. With the help of an additional £36,929 Cornwall Council contribution rusted churchyard railings around the Drinking Fountain were removed, repaired and reinstated.


    Café Tengo

    A grant of £1,636.90 was made on 5th June 2019 for two bespoke ceramic tiled hanging signs. These were intended as a prototype for future ceramic signs in the town. A manual showing how they were produced is available on Cornwall council’s webpages.

    A grant of £38,730 was made on 28th May 2021 to reclad the poor quality modern shopfront in bespoke ceramic tiling with edible planting, repaint the external walls, repair and paint upper storey windows and install new bespoke tiled folding doors to the café. White Gold contributed £5,000 towards the costs in addition to the TH grant. The works received a commendation in the 2023 Cornish Building Group Awards.


    Former Tregarne Sunday School

    The former Tregarne chapel and Sunday school had remained vacant for twenty five years before both buildings were bought at Auction in 2021. A grant of £93,500 was made on 18th November 2021 to convert the former Sunday school to three flats and with five internal parking spaces with electric charging points and cycle and surfboard storage. The funded works included repair of all original arched windows and doors, structural repairs, re-roofing and render repair and painting to external walls. The adjoining chapel is being converted at the same time as the former Sunday School but without grant aid.


    Energy performance monitoring of three types of breathable internal insulation has also been progressing. Baseline monitoring is complete and monitoring after installation of breathable insulation has commenced. Results of the monitoring will be published on the Council’s web pages.


    3 Fore Street

    A grant offer of £20,256.33 was made on 3rd January 2022 for traditional embellishments as part of a new shopfront installation. The building, previously vacant, is now fully occupied on three floors.


    1 Vicarage Hill

    A grant offer of £32,333.25 was made on 11th April 2022 for upper storey window repairs, new doors with cast balustrade’s and a bespoke artist designed ceramic tiled reclad of the existing shopfront. The works received a commendation in the 2023 Cornish Building Group Awards.


    Tregonissey House

    A grant offer of £110,208.50 was made on 6th July 2022 for renovations on the former Walter Hicks brewery building. The funded work included reroofing and vegetation clearance, cupola vent structure repairs, leadwork and parapet repairs, original window repairs, new replacement traditional windows and doors, cast rainwater goods and external surfacing improvements.


    9 Church Street

    A grant offer of £18,834.69 was made on 7th September 2022 for a new shopfront based on original detailing, a new first floor bowed timber sash window and external wall repair and painting.


    Moustache Jacks, 2 Biddicks Court

    A grant offer of £27,154.77 was made on 17th October 2022 for new traditional timber sash windows to the front elevation, structural repairs, a new traditional shopfront, and external wall rendering and painting.


    Level access scheme for Trinity Centre and Market House

    A grant of £13,763.20 was made on 31st August 2022 to raise the external surfacing to create level access to the Trinity Centre and also to the Town Museum.


    End of scheme plaque/water bottle unit

    A recessed water bottle unit has been installed next to the Drinking Fountain on Holy Trinity churchyard wall. A ceramic tiled artist designed end of scheme plaque has been installed around it.


  • Traditional Skills Training

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    A traditional and sustainable skills programme operated throughout the scheme and included ‘Hands on’ workshops on TH funded projects.

    Training events included:

    • Creative Front (ceramic training day-26 attendees): 26th March 2019
    • Linseed Paint Workshop (10 attendees): 11th July 2019
    • Creative Front (Workshop at White Gold Festival): Sept 2019
    • Timber Repair Workshop (Market House-12 attendees): Jan 2020
    • Market House ceramic sign (student involvement): Oct 2021
    • Botanical Clay Workshop (21 attendees): April 2023



  • Discover St Austell App

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    ‘Discover St Austell’ is a fun app to help St Austell’s residents and visitors explore and unravel the town’s hidden secrets and history.

    The app was produced with St Austell Townscape Heritage, LEADER and Cornwall Council funds.

    It can be used on the two historic trails on St Austell Discovery Map and includes:

    • Illustrated commentaries on historical events in the town
    • historic photographs of the town merging into current ones
    • An audio commentary
    • Cornish and German versions of the text
    • A Treasure Trail and timed journey
    • Health information

    The app also includes an Art Trail and Townscape Heritage Trail. It can be downloaded for free from the App Store (Search Discover St Austell)




  • Update - February 2023

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    SHARE YOUR VIEWS ON 4-YEAR SCHEME AS IT NEARS COMPLETION IN TOWN CENTRE

    Cornwall Council’s Townscape Heritage Scheme, an initiative which offered grants for quality traditional repairs to key historic buildings in St Austell and reinstated shopfronts and signs, will soon be complete. Overall, 15 projects have been undertaken (including 3 in the public realm) all focussed on making St Austell a better place to live, work and visit by enhancing the town’s Conservation Area.

    It's time to hear your views on what you think this heritage-led regeneration Scheme has achieved and the difference this makes. Please take approx. 7 minutes to have your say in this survey as part of the final evaluation process.

    Throughout March, some final elements will be completed, and plans are being worked up to celebrate all the Scheme has achieved.

    LOOK OUT FOR:

    • Scaffolding coming down revealing some great makeovers
    • End-of-scheme celebration events and workshops
    • More creative ceramic tiles coming to the town’s heritage quarter
    • A place to fill your water bottle up for free, next to the Drinking Fountain on Holy Trinity churchyard wall
  • Works Progressing Update - February 2022

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    Works progressing:


    St Austell Market House

    Use: Market House containing Town Museum and commercial units

    Works funded:

    • New frameless recessed clear glazing to Ground Floor openings to recreate the look of the original open arches
    • Removal of internal partitions and suspended ceilings to reveal original vaulted stone ceilings
    • Refurbishment of double hung sash windows to first floor
    • Re-seating granite entrance steps
    • New ceramic hanging signs to the Market House and Museum;
    • Bespoke ceramic planters within recesses to ground floor glazed openings
    • New cast iron gutters and downpipies replacing current undersized ones
    • Fascia repairs
    • Selected lime re-pointing
    • Additional agreed work includes new temporary flooring and internal architectural lighting to the granite arches


    A skills training workshop for Cornwall College Carpentry students on timber window repairs was held on Thursday 23rd January 2020.

    Workshops also took place with Cornwall College Art students who assisted production of the new ceramic hanging sign.









    1-3 Victoria Place (Day Lewis Chemist)

    Use: Continued use of chemist at ground floor, ground floor flat, conversion of upper floors to additional 6 residential units


    Works funded:

    • New traditional shopfront with detailing based on original shopfront
    • New ground floor flat window
    • Repaired and overhauled upper floor sash windows
    • New cast rainwater goods


    32/32a Fore Street (Hays Travel)

    Use: Commercial all floors

    Works funded:

    • Leadwork repairs to barrel roofed dormer window and parapet
    • Window repairs
    • External painting, picking out detailing in contrasting colours


    2-6 Bodmin Road

    Use: Retail at Ground Floor, residential on upper floors


    Works funded:

    • New traditional shopfront with bespoke stallriser tiling
    • New traditional sash windows
    • Breathable internal insulation
    • New timber fascia and soffit
    • New ogee cast alluminium gutters
    • Front walls painted in breathable mineral paint



    Market St, Trinity Centre (former Hop and Vine)

    Use: Church offices and display area, community café, meeting, training rooms

    Works funded:

    • New traditional shopfront
    • Sash window repairs
    • Refixing roofing slate
    • Structural repairs to roof
    • Cast rainwater goods


    Drinking Fountain, Holy Trinity Churchyard wall

    Use: Drinking Fountain

    Works funded:

    • Repairs to damaged drinking fountain including reinstating marble side pieces and missing finials, stone cleaning
    • Repair and repointing churchyard railings

    Café Tengo, 1 Fore Street

    Use: Ground floor café, upper floors other uses connected to cafe.

    Works funded:

    • Re-tile shopfront in bespoke 3D tiling with edible planting
    • New ground floor doors to cafe
    • Repair and repaint first and second floor windows
    • Clean down and paint walls of main elevations


    Tregarne Former Sunday School

    Use: Vacant building converted into three flats with internal parking spaces for 5 cars and cycle storage.

    Works funded:

    • Clean down external walls, repairing render and repainting in mineral paint picking out detailing in contrasting colours
    • Re-roofing in reclaimed local slate
    • Structural repairs to roof structure
    • Chimney repairs
    • Cast rainwater goods
    • New corner front double doors to original detailing
    • Repair of front main entrance doors
    • Repair and overhaul of seven arch headed windows reinstating any missing coloured glass
    • Five new sash windows to side elevation
    • Three new tall arched sash windows to rear and new sash window to side elevation
    • Reinstate original boarded reveal detail to twelve windows


    3 Fore Street

    Use: New shopfront to vacant building.

    Works funded:

    • Pilasters to each side of new shopfront
    • New cornice, fascia and sign (hand painted or ceramic)
    • Painting to new shopfront and sign in high performance timber paint
    • New leadwork over new shopfront




  • General Progress Update - November 2021

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    Work progressing:

    • St Austell Market House

    Grant Panel approval, grant offer made (£114,145). First phase works complete. Works include refurbished first floor windows, new clear glazed ground floor openings and removal of suspended ceiling to reveal original granite arched ceiling. Additional works (up to £15,000) for architectural lighting for internal granite arches. LBC submitted for work. Successful Launch with assistance from Cultural Recovery Fund on August 21st.


    • 1-3 Victoria Place

    Grant Panel approval, grant offer made (£54,228) for new shopfront, new ground floor flat window and cast rainwater goods. Additional work (£7,130.52) agreed through a variation. This included repair and overhaul of all 10 front elevation sash windows, new sash window to side elevation and new cast rainwater goods. Scheme now complete.


    • 32/32a Fore Street (Hays Travel)

    Grants panel approval, grant offer made (£13,808) and agreement signed and returned. Works include leadwork repairs to barrel roofed dormer window and parapet, window repairs and external painting, picking out detailing in contrasting colours. Works started in November 2020. Additional work (£11,864.93) including replacement windows, leadwork to parapet and structural repairs now agreed with completion in November 2021. Works complete and building now structurally sound and weatherproof.


    • The Trinity Centre, 3 Market Street (former Hop and Vine)

    Grant Panel approval, grant offer made (£91,502), agreement signed and returned. Works include new shopfront, window refurbishment and structural repairs. Works started on site and progressing well, estimated completion December 2021.


    • 2-6 Bodmin Road

    Grant Panel approval, grant offer made (£53,535), agreement signed and returned. Works include new shopfront with bespoke stallriser tiling and traditional sash windows to front elevation, painting external wall and installling breathable internal insulation to upper storey flats. Planning permission obtained. Windows,fascia and shopfront installed and walls painted. Ceramic Artist developing shopfront tiling design. Structural repairs carried out on rusted front column bases. Project started on site with completion November 2021. Additional unforeseen works agreed in principle (up to £13,000 grant est).

    • Drinking Fountain

    Cormac successful in retendered through Due North (up to £50,000). Works include repairs to Drinking Fountain and churchyard wall. Discussions taken place over extend of work to churchyard that could be funded. Listed Building Consent and Faculty approval obtained. Additional contribution towards works from Cornwall Council. Drinking Fountain repairs commenced on site. Churchyard railing repairs commenced. Completion December 2021.


    • Café Tengo

    Scheme being progressed to reclad frontage in bespoke ceramic tiling with edible planting, repaint external wall, repair and paint windows and install new doors. Costs returned, planning permission obtained. White Gold contributing £5,000 towards costs in addition to TH grant. Grant offer and agreement (£38,730.16) signed. Roof cleaning, window repairs, new doors and wall painting now complete. Completion January 2022.


    Grant offers made:

    • Old Manor House

    Grant Panel approval, grant offer made (£194,871), updated agreement accepted by applicants solicitors. Works include new Cornish slate roof, reinstating original timber windows with leaded lights, reinstating original dormer windows, cast rainwater goods. Agent appointed, Listed Building Consent obtained, tenders returned but over budget. Value engineering currently taken place. Weekly Teams meetings with applicant and agent. Proposed start date now March 2022, estimated completion June 2022.



    Grant offers made but schemes not proceeding:

    • 8 Bodmin Road

    Grant panel approval, grant offer made (£34,402), agreement not returned, owner decided to sell on without grant to avoid clawback, discussions with tenants to see if any other alternatives. Other option would be to discuss agreed grant offer with new owners.


    • 5 Church Street

    Grant Panel approval, grant offer and Agreement drafted (£91,571). Financial concerns raised by independent QS mostly addressed but applicants then decided to concentrate on conversion work that did not need planning permission without taking up grant offer. Applicant indicated he may apply this year for a grant for the frontage only.



    Applications being progressed:

    • Tregarne Chapel and Sunday School

    Owner decided to auction building with planning permission. Discussions ongoing with developer who bought Chapel and Sunday School at Auction. Grant offer being discussed to convert Sunday school to three flats with 5 parking spaces for chapel conversion. Agreed works include repair of all original windows and doors, structural repairs, re-roofing, render repair and painting. Valuations obtained, formal tendering through sealed bids. Conservation deficit calculation being worked out. NLHF authority given to proceed. Proposed start date November 2021 (Completion June 2022).



    Other schemes being developed subject to available funding:

    • 3 Fore Street

    New shopfront designs agreed. Planning application submitted. Tenders returned, grant application submitted. Grant offer being worked up.


    • 8 Market Street

    Designs and quotations obtained for ceramic reclad to shopfront. Discussions ongoing with co-owners


    • 1 Vicarage Hill

    Discussions ongoing with owner on frontage repairs and ceramic reclad.


    • 39a and 49 Fore Street (former Liberal Club)

    Tenders returned. Meeting being arranged with owner to discuss two potential shopfront schemes


    • Tregonissey House

    Discussion ongoing with owner over possible grant for window and door repairs, new ground floor windows and doors, access improvements, shopfront/signage improvements and leadwork to parapet.


    • 10 Victoria Place (Your Move)

    Tender returned, meeting being arranged with owner to discuss potential scheme to repair and replace original windows


    • 44 Fore Street

    Discussions ongoing with new owner over potential scheme for new shopfront and reinstated traditional sash windows to frontage.


    • The Stag Inn

    Specification produced for repair and repainting of all original windows, re roofing, render repairs and re painting external walls. Quotations being obtained for all work. Owner having problems raising finance and decided not to proceed. Reduced scheme might be possible at later date if business picks up this year.

  • Volunteer Surveys

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    Buildings at Risk, Local List and Social History web based forms available to use now on the herodotus website.

    The forms will be used for volunteer survey work and will include business directories, technical guidance (text and audio).

    Additional work funded through Developing Skills for Business will include, additional business directories and updated technical guidance, opportunities for adding memories, culture node to serve information in St Austell museum and historic mapping.

    The additional work and surveys have been delayed through lockdown, but it is hoped volunteer surveys could commence in November 2021.

  • Paint Testing

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    12 month & 24 month testing of high quality timber paints at the Green Build Hub at the Eden Project Campus have been carried out.

    Web based guidance will be produced based on the results of these tests. Paints that are performing well are being specified on TH funded projects.

  • My St Austell

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    Heritage book/video

    To Life productions are producing a video and book with local schools - ‘My St Austell’ These will both give a child’s view of the towns heritage. Participants are busy creating stories, pictures, photographs and more, all inspired by what means the most to them about their town.

    The digital art piece below, produced by local students for the book, is inspired by local beaches.


Page last updated: 01 Mar 2024, 12:41 PM