Hall For Cornwall is celebrating today as The Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) has today announced further funding for the redevelopment, called the Revealing City Hall project.
The award is a full grant of £2,576,900 following development funding last year.
The grant will ensure the conservation and reinvigoration of Christopher Eales’ 1846 Grade II building’s Boscawen Street and Lemon Quay public spaces that currently envelop Hall For Cornwall’s auditorium. A themed heritage activity programme Revealing City Hall will unveil the 350-year history of the City Hall site, bringing to life identified themes and telling the stories and importance of the building through interpretation and a range of accessible formal and informal learning opportunities, workshops, events, training and volunteer placement opportunities.
Commenting on the award, Julien Boast, Director of Hall For Cornwall said: “It’s always a thrill and relief to know that everybody’s hard work here has been fully recognized. We’re delighted that the Heritage Lottery Fund has given us this support and after all the research and preparations so energetically undertaken, we are now eager to unleash our building’s cultural and heritage potential and give expression to this enormous confidence in us”.
Over the years, Truro City Hall has been many things to many people. Courts of Justice, skating rink, food market, rifle range, jail, theatre and seat of political power. It has survived fire and more than one economic downturn; provided a platform for civic unrest and played host to award-winning shows. The HLF-funded project will enable people to discover the evolving heritage of City Hall and its place in an emerging city, through a ‘voice-scape’ of people past and present and a host of other creative innovations that will tell its very unique story.
Councillor Bob Egerton, Cornwall Council’s Portfolio Holder for Planning & Economy commented; “With this HLF award, Hall For Cornwall is one step closer to raising the money to transform its theatre and redevelop the historic civic building in which it sits. As a partner, Cornwall Council is working with the team at HFC to realise this exciting vision which, once reopened, will act as a great economic boost for our growing city. Having a world class cultural building at the heart of Truro’s place shaping plans offers us a great chance to achieve our growth aspirations in a way that respects local distinctiveness and provides a fantastic resource for the whole of Cornwall”.
Phil Gibby, Area Director, South West, Arts Council England, said: “We’re thrilled that Hall for Cornwall has been successful in their Heritage Lottery Funding bid which will allow them to more fully demonstrate the theatre’s wonderful heritage. This investment builds on an award of £5 million that we made to them last year through our National Lottery-funded Capital programme to redevelop the theatre making it more accessible, more resilient and more sustainable. The combination of these investments will facilitate the transformation of the venue, which plays an increasingly important role in the region, meaning more people from across Cornwall and the South West can enjoy the benefits of arts and culture and further establishing the theatre as a centre for Cornwall’s burgeoning cultural economy.”
Hall For Cornwall’s proposed redevelopment gained initial support from Arts Council England in 2014 with a Stage 1 application award which, in association with Cornwall Council, funded the initial designs and the appointments of architects, Burrell Foley Fischer.
In May last year, Arts Council England approved its Stage II funding, awarding £5 million towards the redevelopment. In addition, Hall For Cornwall was awarded £2 million from central government in March 2016 and planning permission was also secured following an extensive public consultation.
Cornwall Council is a dedicated partner of the proposed redevelopment and Hall For Cornwall is grateful for their continued support. The project must now secure its final stages of funding from public and private sources and until then, it very much remains open for business as usual.