Council takes Heartlands control

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Cornwall Council, which owns the Heartlands site in Pool and leased it to the Heartlands Trust, has officially taken over the running of the site as the trust’s legal obligations under the lease and management agreement have formally come to an end.

Up until this point, and following their decision to close areas of Heartlands at the end of January, the trust remained responsible for all aspects of the site until the lease formally ended. Now that an insolvency practitioner has been appointed by the trust and the lease and management agreement has been handed back to the Council, the Council is able to formally liaise with tenants, as well as implement planned maintenance and management systems at Heartlands to meet the needs of those visiting, living and working on the site.

As the owner of the Heartlands site, the Council remains committed to maintaining public access to the parks and gardens. It is now formally able to undertake things like grass cutting and maintaining the grounds, repairing outdoor play equipment, emptying bins and undertaking essential maintenance to the buildings.

The Registration Service and commercially let shops and offices have remained open.

The insolvency practitioner is organising a public auction of the trust’s assets, that does not include equipment essential to operate the site in the future. The Council retains ownership of the cafe fixtures and fitting, the soft play equipment, the contents of the main hall, and all the of the original artefacts and historic fixtures and fittings. The sale of the trust’s assets will include items such as a marquee and bouncy castle that were owned by the trust.

Vickery Holman has been instructed to prepare marketing particulars to invite bids to lease the café and soft play areas, as well as for the management and operation of the site as a whole.

The Council says its priority will be to find the right custodian of the site in the future. The preference would be for one operator, but if that is not possible, then professional operators for the component parts.

Cllr Bob Drew, chairman of Carn Brea Parish Council, said: “I am pleased that this period of uncertainty for residents and tenants has come to an end. Cornwall Council has committed to keep stakeholders informed and to be part of future plans.”