Your Questions Answered

Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about our Town Deal and the projects which are being developed.

A Town Deal is an agreement in principle between government, the lead council (in our case Cornwall Council) and the Town Deal board.  It sets out the vision and strategy for the town, and confirms what each party agrees to do to achieve this vision. The Town Deal (or Heads of Terms agreement) is signed once the government has assessed and approved the Town Investment Plan, including its request within it for funding. Towns then have up to 12 months to develop the specific detail of these projects through business cases.

On 9 May 2021 we successfully bid for a Town Deal worth £19.9 million from the Government’s £3.6 billion Towns Fund Scheme.  

Our bid was designed to deliver three key objectives:

  • Generate inclusive green growth and new enterprise, within a year-round economy
  • Support the health, wellbeing and aspiration of all residents in life and work
  • Create opportunities for young people which allow them to flourish

Cornwall Council is the Accountable Body, which means that it holds the contract with the government and is ultimately responsible for ensuring that things happen as specified within the grant funding agreement. It is also providing the practical administration and advice where required to service the Town Deal Board.  The St Ives Town Board lead, advocate, support and champion the development and delivery of the Town Investment Plan and are an integral part of the process. All key documents are signed off by both Cornwall Council and the St Ives Town Deal Board

The board includes a mix of representatives from the private, public and community sectors.  It includes councillors from Cornwall Council and St Ives Town Council, local businesses, community stakeholders and the area’s MP.  The make-up of the board was set out in guidance from the government when the scheme was originally announced.

A Town Investment Plan (TIP) sets out the vision and strategy for a town.  It outlines a strategic programme of investment and is developed by a Town Deal Board, a partnership of business, civic and community organisations, and councillors with extensive community involvement.

Our Town Investment Plan is based around three themes:

  • A low carbon, transport system
  • Local skills,  jobs and businesses 
  • New and transformed housing and community assets

Through the vision and the delivery of the plan, the following outcomes will be achieved:

  • Generate inclusive green growth and new enterprise, within a year-round economy
  • Support the health, wellbeing and aspiration of all residents in life and work
  • Create opportunities for young people which allow them to flourish

We identified a mix of large-scale transformation projects together with a number of smaller scale community projects which fit within our three themes:

A low carbon, transport system

Local skills, jobs and businesses 

New and transformed housing and community assets

The 12 projects included in our original Town Investment Plan (TIP) are:

Low Carbon Transport

Bay to Bay

Future farm Tech Hub

Delegated Fund for Renewal

St Ives Community Orchard

Rugby Club/ Affordable Housing

Old Vicarage Flats

Live West retrofit scheme

Palais de Danse


St Ives Theatre

Leach Pottery and Digital Trail

All project ideas, suggestions and contributions had to be tested against the government’s criteria & guidelines for Regeneration, Skills provision and Connectivity. They were then assessed to ensure that they were viable and sustainable.

This required proposals to either:

  • Address urban regeneration, planning and land use: ensuring towns are thriving places for people to live and work, including by: increasing density in town centres; strengthening local economic assets including local cultural assets; site acquisition, remediation, preparation, regeneration; and making full use of planning tools to bring strategic direction and change.
  • Provide skills and enterprise infrastructure: driving private sector investment and ensuring towns have the space to support skills and small business development.
  • Develop local transport schemes that complement regional and national networks, as well as supporting the delivery of improved digital connectivity


All projects were also required to :

  • Show a sustainable self-sufficient level of income generation and the ability to provide future core running costs
  • Sit within the defined investment boundary
  • Have demonstrable public support (stakeholder engagement)


We worked closely with the community to develop an initial long list of 40 projects. These were then assessed using a robust project selection and management process to produce the short-list of projects which fit within the three themes set out in our Town Investment Plan.

At the end of 2022, nine projects, ranging from large-scale transformation to smaller scale community led initiatives, were approved by the Government.

Since then work has been  taking place to finalise the plans so delivery can begin within the coming months.     


Each project had had to go  through a complex process to ensure it is deliverable within budget, sustainable for the future and supported by the community. After the initial funding announcement by Government, projects were given 12 months to produce detailed business cases to demonstrate their feasibility and viability. The Government  required the business cases to be first reviewed and approved by both the Town Deal Board and Cornwall Council, before providing its final approval.

After the announcement of our funding allocation in May 2021, the projects short-listed in our TIP worked on the development of their business cases.  These were submitted to government for approval in summer 2022.

A decision on the nine Town Deal projects was announced at the end of 2022, paving the way for a detailed programme of works and timescales to be developed in early 2023. 

This will vary from one project to another but, in line with government requirements, all of the funding must be spent by the end of March 2026

No.  The Government has offered St Ives a “Town Deal” based on the projects outlined in the Town Investment Plan.  The Department of Levelling Up, Housing and Communities has made a grant offer against each of these projects subject to final Business Case summary submission and will confirm funding once they have reviewed and approved the submission.

Each of the towns selected by the government to work towards a Town Deal were invited to apply for Accelerated Funding to invest in capital projects that would have an immediate impact and help places ‘build back better’ in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.  This was effectively an early release of Towns Fund money to kickstart projects up to the value of £500k in each town. 


After successfully securing £500k for St Ives, this funding has been allocated to two projects:

£450k for the St Ives Skate Park Regeneration project.

This project was chosen to receive Accelerator Funding as it had already been submitted to the Town Deal Board and was a sufficiently developed project with huge community support.  The Skatepark Group leading the project had raised a considerable amount of money which has been used to match the government grant.  This project has been completed.

£50K for new fish landing and selling facilities at Smeatons Pier

This project will improve facilities for fishers working from St Ives harbour and includes a facility to allow fishers to sell directly to the public.  It includes converting an existing store and a weight room into refrigerated stores and building a small building to be used as a shop. Construction is currently underway.

After being selected by the government as one of the 100 towns who could apply for Town Deal funding in May 2020, the St Ives Town Deal Board was formed and we began work on developing our Town Investment Plan (TIP).

We worked with the community to develop our vision and aims and then carried out an initial “Calls for Expressions of Interest” process where people were asked to submit ideas which met the specific criteria set out in the government’s Town Deal regulations and also fitted within our developing themes.

We went back to the local community to develop a long list of 40 potential projects, drawing ideas and creative solutions from a wide range of sectors. The long list was then assessed using a robust project selection and management process to produce a short list which met the government’s Town Deal criteria.

We then went back to the local community to ask for their views on the proposed projects before finalising the investment plan.

Further consultation and engagement will take place throughout the course of the delivery of the Town Deal programme and associated projects.

The nine St Ives Town Deal projects are:

Low Carbon Transport – led by Cornwall Council, this project will provide residents, business owners and visitors to St Ives with safe and reliable transport options that encourage walking, cycling and the use of public transport

Enterprise Grants Fund – providing grants to micro, small and medium sized businesses within the St Ives Town Deal area. Funding to support capital investments that help local businesses to grow, develop and help to diversify the local economy and generate quality local employment opportunities

St Ives Theatre Regeneration – led by Kidz R Us, the refurbishment and upgrade of the existing theatre will provide an extended auditorium and new café/bar and reception area to support the future sustainability of the theatre

Old Vicarage Flats –run and operated by the St Ives Community Land Trust, the renovation of the Old Vicarage building will provide six high quality and affordable flats for local residents in the heart of the town

St Ives LiveWest Low Carbon Retrofit – a wide energy-efficient housing programme led by Live West to retrofit 200 social housing properties in the town, creating greener homes which are cheaper to heat and warmer to live in.

New and updated Rugby Club and Housing – the repositioning and refurbishment of the Rugby Club facilities in the upper part of town will provide improved sports facilities and create space for the future development of new affordable homes for key workers and extra care housing

St Ives Guildhall – led by St Ives Town Council, the refurbishment of the Guildhall into a thriving cultural venue together with a café and bar space, providing a high-quality year-round programme and support new local jobs in the creative sector

St Ives Community Orchard Growth – this project will provide a Community Learning Centre delivering environmental education, mental and health therapy, community events and nature-based training to individuals, local groups and schools

Leach Pottery & St Ives Digital Trail – creating a community hub at the Leach Pottery with a new production studio, kilns and a learning suite on a world class site, that will become part of a new heritage digital trail within the town

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