Launceston local news

Labour Party has a Parliamentary candidate for North Cornwall

By Julia Penhaligon Labour has selected Robyn Harris as its Parliamentary candidate for North Cornwall. Ms Harris, from Wadebridge, works for Cormac.  She hopes to build on the progress...

Pydar: the extra £10 million still has a hurdle to clear

By Graham Smith Last week’s controversial decision by County Hall’s Conservative cabinet to spend an extra £10 million on the redevelopment of Truro’s Pydar area will have to clear...

North Cornwall’s Lib Dems get their man

By Julia Penhaligon North Cornwall’s Liberal Democrats have selected solicitor Ben Maguire as their Parliamentary candidate for the forthcoming general election. Mr Maguire now seeks to fill the shoes...

Watch out for floods, Environment Agency warns North Cornwall

By Rashleigh MacFarlane Several areas in North Cornwall are at risk of flooding as the River Tamar and its tributaries continue to rise during heavy rain. The Environment Agency...

Farmer gets suspended prison sentence and livestock ban

By Harold Callahan A North Cornwall farmer has been handed a suspended prison sentence, ordered to pay more than £6,000 in fines and costs and banned from keeping pigs,...

Police say North Cornwall rave is “unacceptable”

By Harold Callahan Police claim to be “dealing with an illegal rave in the Camelford area.”  They appear to have closed the main A39 road to prevent access onto...

Boxing Day: a good day for Fantastic Mr Fox to stay at home

By Julia Penhaligon At least four fox hunts – and hunt saboteurs – will be out across Cornwall for their traditional Boxing Day confrontations. According to the Countryside Alliance,...

Sits Vac: Liberal Democrats seek new Parliamentary candidate for North Cornwall

By Graham Smith Phil Hutty has resigned as the Liberal Democrats’ Parliamentary candidate in North Cornwall, triggering a fresh selection contest. Cornwall Reports understands that local activists were divided...

Pavement politics and Palestine: Newquay joins the chorus of protest

By Graham Smith The number of demonstrations in Cornwall against the war in Palestine continues to grow, with another due to be held in Newquay this afternoon (Sunday.) A...

Give peace a chance: Cornwall’s protestors turn to weekend pavement politics as horrors of the war in Palestine continue every day

By Graham Smith The number of protests in Cornwall against the escalating horrors of the war in Palestine is continuing to grow. Launceston, Falmouth and Penzance have all seen...

More losers than winners as government sprinkles £450,000 on only six leisure centres

By Rashleigh MacFarlane Only six of Cornwall’s leisure centres have been awarded a share of nearly £450,000 from the government’s £20.3 million Swimming Pool Support Fund. All of them...

Launceston leisure centre to benefit from County Hall U-turn

By Rashleigh MacFarlane Cornwall Council leader Linda Taylor yesterday (Friday) completed a spectacular policy U-turn by agreeing to a £792,000 funding package for the Launceston leisure centre over the...

Cornwall to share £1.7 million of government’s £60 million swimming pools fund

By Rashleigh MacFarlane The government is giving Cornwall £1.7 million to help swimming pools. Ten pools will benefit from a £1.1 million capital works cash injection.  This is from...

With no public debate, Cornwall is about to hear a story of winners and losers as government awards cash from its swimming pool fund

By Rashleigh MacFarlane The mystery over the dramatic County Hall U-Turn which looks set to deliver a welcome cash boost to Launceston leisure centre has deepened, with news that...

County Hall U-Turn looks like good news for Launceston leisure centre

By Rashleigh MacFarlane Launceston leisure centre could be in line for a major cash boost for repairs and improvements. Cornwall Council officials have told leader councillor Linda Taylor she...

A30 on Bodmin Moor to close tonight while police investigate fatal accident

By Peter Tremayne The A30 over Bodmin Moor will close tonight (Sunday) so that police can resume their investigation into a fatal accident.  The closure will require long diversions....

The curious case of the brand new Cornish primary schools which might have collapsed in strong winds

By Rashleigh MacFarlane The government has launched a new investigation into how it awarded contracts to a building company responsible for two primary schools in Cornwall which had to...

Planners say “no” to East Cornwall Hunt’s bid for new kennels, raising questions about the future of the hounds

By Rashleigh MacFarlane Cornwall’s planners have refused permission for the East Cornwall Hunt to keep up to 48 hounds in kennels on Bodmin Moor. The decision raises the possibility...

Still going after 167 years: Cornish and Devon Post keeps it grip in Launceston

By Rashleigh MacFarlane The Cornish and Devon Post newspaper has completed its move to new offices – from Launceston’s Westgate Street to Southgate Street – making it one of...

Another fine mess: part-built Truro flats to be demolished before anyone moves in

By Lee Trewhela and Julia Penhaligon The economic crisis in the construction sector has claimed another victim in Cornwall. A partially-built development of up to 40 flats will be...

Fatal accident on A30 brings death toll to seven in less than two weeks

By Peter Tremayne Cornwall’s roads have claimed another life – the seventh in less than two weeks. Police are investigating an accident between Two Bridges and Plusha on the...

Launceston leisure centre is back and under new management

By Anne North Launceston’s leisure centre reopened this morning (Thursday) after a three-week break caused by the failure of Cornwall Council’s main operator, GLL, to fulfil its 25-year contract....

Hot Fuzz: police add to their arsenal of crime-busting kit with new four-wheel-drive buggy

By Peter Tremayne Devon and Cornwall police will soon be able to chase villains all over Bodmin Moor, thanks to a new “all-terrain” vehicle. Not much larger than a...

Launceston leisure centre to reopen on Thursday

By Rashleigh MacFarlane Launceston’s leisure centre is set to reopen on Thursday, after a brief interruption in service following Cornwall Council’s decision to close it last month. The swimming...

Who needs a mayor? Government gives Cornwall £10 million of “devolution deal” cash because of use-it-or-lose-it deadline – and it won’t be paid back even if mayor is rejected

By Julia Penhaligon The government is giving Cornwall £10 million, originally conditional on the proposed Devolution Deal, without any need for a mayor. Whitehall has relented because of a...

Launceston leisure centre to close after all – but for how long?

By Peter Tremayne The owners of Launceston’s leisure centre have said the facility will, after all, close next week – but that they hope to reopen it next month. ...

Launceston’s swimming pool and sports centre saved as local community rallies with rescue plan

By Graham Smith Launceston’s swimming pool and sports centre has been saved, despite Cornwall Council announcing its closure last month. The town’s leisure centre is owned by a local...

I intend to vote against a mayor for Cornwall, says Tory councillor

By Julia Penhaligon The first Conservative Cornwall councillor to reject the government’s devolution and mayoral ideas has declared publicly that he will vote against the proposals. Launceston councillor John...

Bunnies beware: wildcats are coming back

By Rashleigh MacFarlane Wildcats, once a feature of the South West countryside, are about to become the focal point of a “re-wilding” project close to the Devon-Cornwall border. The...

Ten of Cornwall’s leisure centres at risk of shorter opening hours

By Rashleigh MacFarlane The company which manages most of Cornwall’s leisure centres has said it plans to cut their opening hours in a bid to save money. GLL, trading...

Cornwall Council angers Launceston with leisure centre “closure” announcement

By Graham Smith There is anger in Launceston over a Cornwall Council press release announcing the closure of the town’s leisure centre and swimming pool. The centre is currently...

Barn fire lights up the night sky across North Cornwall

By Peter Tremayne Fire crews have spent the night dealing with a barn fire near Launceston. A large quantity of baled straw burned for several hours near Lewannick.  Flames...

Jamaica Inn sold to national hotel group for £8 million

By Rashleigh MacFarlane Jamaica Inn, on Bodmin Moor, has been sold for approximately £8 million to a national hotel chain. The pub, made famous by Daphne du Maurier’s novel...

The Queen is not amused: Davidstow cheese factory could lose its Royal seal of approval over Bodmin Moor pollution

By Rashleigh MacFarlane The Davidstow cheese factory is at risk of losing its Royal patronage unless it stops polluting Bodmin Moor with black sludge. The Queen is said to...

Environment Agency probes river pollution

By Rashleigh MacFarlane The Environment Agency is investigating the cause of pollution which has killed fish and other aquatic life in two North Cornwall rivers. There have been incidents...

Four day centres for adults with learning disabilities set to close

By Anne North Cornwall Council looks set to close, permanently, four day centres offering services to people with learning disabilities.  The centres are at Bude, Launceston, Bodmin and Newquay....

Another construction firm in administration, posing questions over unfinished buildings in Cornwall

By Peter Tremayne Another large construction company has gone into administration, leaving question marks over a number of public sector projects in Cornwall. Caledonian Modular had been working on...

Now you see them, now you don’t don’t: the curious case of Launceston’s vanishing roadworks

By Peter Tremayne Launceston looks set for weeks of traffic chaos after Cornwall Council warned of roadworks – and then withdrew its warning – before likely reintroducing the warning...

Email-gate: the final chapter

By Julia Penhaligon Councillor Adam Paynter, who at one stage seemed set for a glittering career as a Liberal Democrat politician in North Cornwall, appears to have finally broken...

New walking path would encircle Cornwall

By Rashleigh MacFarlane A lottery-funded project is recommending a new walking path to link Bude in North Cornwall to Rame in South East Cornwall. The 90-mile route, through the...

Cornwall Council’s ruling cabinet votes to close Falmouth’s Ships & Castles leisure centre

By Graham Smith Cornwall Council’s ruling cabinet has voted to close the Ships and Castles leisure centre at Falmouth. The Pendennis headland site will now be declared “surplus” and...

Saints Trail – it wasn’t the first two-wheeled “omnishambles” and it won’t be the last: Any inquiry needs to ask the right questions if the same mistakes are not to be repeated

By Graham Smith Any inquiry into the multi-million pound Saints Trail fiasco, which on Friday saw the scrapping of a key part of a 19 mile off-road cycle path,...

Woman raped in Launceston

By Peter Tremayne Launceston police are investigating after a woman was raped in Madford Lane at the weekend. The attack was reported to have taken place between 00:25am and...

The future of leisure centres: price or value?

By Rashleigh MacFarlane The “beauty contest” to decide who will run leisure centres in Falmouth and Wadebridge is approaching its final stages, with councillors today (Tuesday) due to consider...

EXCLUSIVE: Your leisure centre meeting is cancelled and you can’t talk about it, County Hall officials tell elected local councillors

By Graham Smith Cornwall Council officials have intervened to prevent people in the Wadebridge area from meeting to discuss the future of their local leisure centre. An extraordinary meeting...

It’s business as usual, as Cornwall Council resumes the strategy most likely to result in leisure centre closures, leaving potential new local management out in the cold

By Graham Smith Anyone hoping to rescue leisure centres at Falmouth or Wadebridge has only a few days to submit a formal bid to Cornwall Council. The development of...

Two of Cornwall’s under-threat leisure centres will definitely stay open, while two others have a lifeline if alternative management proposals can be realised

By Graham Smith Cornwall Council’s ruling cabinet has agreed to a package of proposals which should definitely save two under-threat leisure centres and may save two others. County Hall...

Leisure centres show-down: whose finger on the trigger?

By Graham Smith A trial of strength between Cornwall Council’s ruling Conservatives and County Hall officials will be displayed publicly tomorrow (Wednesday) when the council’s cabinet has to choose...

Who runs Cornwall Council? Why Wednesday’s cabinet meeting is about much more than four leisure centres

By Graham Smith Wednesday’s Cornwall Council cabinet meeting (15th December) will be a defining moment in the recent history of the authority, determining not only the future of four...

Cornwall’s outdoor education service rescued by deferring closure decision – but leisure centres still face the axe in only three months

By Julia Penhaligon The threat to close Cornwall’s outdoor education centres has been lifted.  Cornwall Council’s £55 million budget cuts included giving notice of redundancy to staff and earmarking...

Providing leisure centres should be a statutory function of local councils, House of Lords tells Cornwall

By Julia Penhaligon Cornwall Council should be forced to maintain and run its leisure centres and not allow them to close simply because a private operator cannot make a...

Cornwall’s leisure centres under renewed threat as County Hall officials sideline councillors and push ahead with closure plans

By Graham Smith The stage is set for a potentially explosive Cornwall Council cabinet meeting next week, as County Hall officials push ahead with plans to close four leisure...

Reprieved: Cornwall’s under-threat leisure centres now odds-on to survive

By Graham Smith It now looks unlikely that any of Cornwall’s leisure centres will close at the end of March next year, even if the private management company GLL...

Leisure centres: how Cornwall Council wants to judge the potential “alternative providers”

By Rashleigh MacFarlane The “alternative” bidders seeking to take over the management of four under-threat leisure centres have been told more details of how their proposals might be taken...

Scrutiny councillors face public questions before studying proposals to close four leisure centres

By Julia Penhaligon Cornwall councillors face eight public questions tomorrow (Tuesday) before they start scrutinising proposals to close four leisure centres and the St Austell hydrotherapy pool. The questions...

Hands up those who want an inquiry into the future of Cornwall’s leisure centres! Six Tory councillors, under pressure from officials on one side and voters on the other, hold the key

By Graham Smith Any one of six Conservative councillors could hold the key to the future of Cornwall’s leisure centres when they take part in a scrutiny committee meeting...

“Don’t talk about enforcing the leisure contract, we haven’t had time to tell you about the nine alternative management companies, you can’t have an Inquiry Panel and we want a new gym for Truro” – County Hall officials set themselves up for a rough ride next week

By Graham Smith The 11 Cornwall councillors due to scrutinise the proposed closure of four leisure centres have so far not been given any information about the nine potential...

EXCLUSIVE: Don’t talk about hit lists, but the politics of closing four leisure centres could prove tricky for Conservatives with small majorities

By Graham Smith The failure of a 5,500+ petition to result in a meaningful vote at County Hall yesterday (Tuesday) has turned the attention of Cornwall’s leisure centre protestors...

Nine “expressions of interest” submitted to take over the running of Cornwall’s under-threat leisure centres

By Graham Smith Nine “expressions of interest” have been submitted as potential bids to take over the running of four under-threat leisure centres in Cornwall. Cornwall councillor Richard Pears,...

Council officers seek to rely on constitutional precedent to avoid “people power” making leisure centres’ decision

By Richard Whitehouse and Julia Penhaligon A petition calling for Cornwall Council to let all councillors decide the fate of threatened leisure centres in Cornwall looks set to fail...

Cornwall’s leisure centres: County Hall braces for what looks like being a very long day in the council chamber

By Julia Penhaligon The stage is set for a day of political theatre at County Hall tomorrow (Tuesday) as Cornwall Council’s ruling Conservative administration comes face-to-face, for the first...

Falmouth prepares to show support for its local leisure centre

By Richard Whitehouse A community event in Falmouth this weekend will aim to show support for the town’s leisure centre and the campaign to keep it open. Ships &...

North Cornwall celebrates resumption of Okehampton rail link

By Peter Tremayne The restored rail connection between Okehampton and Exeter resumed service at the weekend, providing a regular train service from Cornwall which can avoid the often tortuous...

A brief window in time: 36 hours next week to question Cornwall Council about leisure centre closures

By Julia Penhaligon and Richard Whitehouse The agenda is due to be published on Tuesday (23rd November) for the next full meeting of Cornwall Council – which appears set...

Leisure centres petition passes 5,000 names, forcing a full council debate

By Rashleigh MacFarlane Cornwall Council will be forced to debate the proposed closure of four leisure centres.  A petition has easily garnered the required 5,000 signatures - it currently...

Your leisure centre is not a community asset, Cornwall Council tells Wadebridge

By Graham Smith Leisure centre campaigners in Wadebridge are furious that Cornwall Council has declared their local swimming pool, gym and sports hall is not a “community asset.” Wadebridge...

Cornwall’s leisure centres: County Hall now has options, as GLL destroys its own monopoly

By Graham Smith The deadline closed this morning (Wednesday) for expressions of interest to take over the running of four under-threat leisure centres in Cornwall. Cornwall Reports understands that...

Leisure centre closures: petition to force full council debate nears half-way stage

By Graham Smith A petition designed to force a full council debate about the future of Cornwall’s leisure centres has attracted more than 2,300 names in only four days....

Petition launched to force a full council vote on the future of Cornwall’s leisure centres

By Richard Whitehouse and Julia Penhaligon Cornwall’s ruling Conservative group of councillors are facing more embarrassment because of a new petition calling for the proposed closure of four leisure...

EXCLUSIVE: “I would resign rather than accept the closure of my leisure centre” – Tories starting to lose their grip on County Hall as Launceston rebellion threatens their council majority

By Graham Smith The Conservatives’ threat to close four of Cornwall’s leisure centres, and the hydrotherapy pool at St Austell, is in turn posing a threat to their majority...

Leisure centres’ closures is “the death of democracy in Cornwall” – says former council leader

By Richard Whitehouse and Julia Penhaligon The way in which Cornwall Council is dodging scrutiny of plans to close four leisure centres has been criticised by a former council...

Sits Vac: North Cornwall Liberal Democrats seek new Parliamentary candidate

By Julia Penhaligon Liberal Democrats in North Cornwall are looking for a new Parliamentary candidate, after their 2019 champion Danny Chambers abandoned hopes of winning the seat at the...

Not a good look: Cornwall Council struggles to answer public questions as battle intensifies over the future of leisure centres

By Graham Smith Cornwall Council leader Linda Taylor has told leisure centre campaigners to “wait and see” after fielding 17 questions from members of the public at this morning’s...

Leisure centre campaigners force closure proposals onto the agenda of today’s council cabinet meeting

By Julia Penhaligon Cornwall Council’s ruling 10-member cabinet today (Wednesday) faces a picket-line of hostile questions about its proposals to close four leisure centres. The closure plans were originally...

Historic sites added to “at risk” register

By Rashleigh MacFarlane Historic England has added the Harvey’s Foundry complex, Hayle, and the medieval pack horse bridge at Launceston to its list of “at risk” sites in Cornwall....

Town Council rejects County Hall’s leisure centre consultation as “deeply flawed” in blistering attack on “closure decisions already made”

By Richard Whitehouse and Julia Penhaligon Wadebridge Town Council has refused to respond to Cornwall Council’s “public” consultation over County Hall’s proposals to close four leisure centres. The town...

“Hands off our leisure centre,” Saltash protestors tell council

Scores of people turned out to support the campaign to save Saltash leisure centre yesterday - one of four under threat of closure.  Cornwall Council is also considering the...

The curious case of Cornwall Council’s decision to give GLL an extra £6.73 million, three months after the company asked to close four leisure centres

An extract from page 45 of a 46-page Appendix, this document was approved by Cornwall Council's cabinet on 22nd September - the same day that County Hall confirmed the...

Stop the closure of Falmouth’s leisure centre, says local MP

By Julia Penhaligon Truro and Falmouth MP Cherilyn Mackrory has called on Cornwall Council to delay, for at least a year, its threatened closure of the Falmouth Ships and...

“If you tolerate this, then your leisure centre will be next” campaigners tell councillors

By Richard Whitehouse and Julia Penhaligon Leisure centre campaigners are planning to protest in Saltash on Saturday (30th October) to draw attention to Cornwall Council’s closure plans. County Hall...

How much did your councillor cost last year? County Hall reveals full list of expenses

By Julia Penhaligon The total mileage claims paid to Cornwall councillors last year is a fraction of previous years, as Covid forced many to stay at home and take...

County Hall agrees to hold extraordinary one-day scrutiny committee meeting to consider leisure centre closures

By Graham Smith The future of Cornwall’s leisure centres might be decided at a one-day extraordinary meeting of a scrutiny committee, probably to be held next month. The Customer...

EXCLUSIVE: If you don’t want to know the result of Cornwall Council’s “public consultation” over leisure centres, look away now

By Julia Penhaligon Cornwall Council will today (Tuesday) issue a tough message to leisure centre campaigners that it is rejecting the opinions it has heard during its “public consultation”...

Can Sophie pull it off? The future of Cornwall’s leisure centres might start to become a little more transparent by the end of next week

By Julia Penhaligon Important steps are about to be taken to determine the future of Cornwall’s leisure centres, with the prospect of a few clues emerging from County Hall...

EXCLUSIVE: This is what happens if you ask a silly question – how what was supposed to be a wide-ranging review of Cornwall’s sports and leisure facilities triggered the current crisis

By Julia Penhaligon The terms of reference for a consultants’ report about Cornwall’s sport and leisure facilities were substantially changed between February and July, Cornwall Reports can reveal. The...

Why I don’t use my local GLL swimming pool, by the councillor who gave the management contract to GLL

By Richard Whitehouse and Julia Penhaligon The councillor who led the outsourcing of Cornwall’s leisure centres in 2017 has said their management is now so poor that he no...

Cornwall’s leisure centre management company is “a bad and exploitative employer,” says union, as workers vote 94% in favour of strike action over unpaid wages

By Julia Penhaligon The leader of Britain’s biggest trade union has condemned the company which runs Cornwall’s leisure centres as “a bad and exploitative employer.” Unite general secretary Sharon...

Now you see it, now you don’t: new puzzle over how the future of Cornwall’s leisure centres is to be decided

By Graham Smith Confusion surrounds the date of a key Cornwall Council meeting which could determine the future of four leisure centres under threat of closure. A Customers and...

Technical problems force councillors to abandon scrutiny meeting before getting the chance to talk about leisure centres

By Graham Smith The Cornwall Council scrutiny committee which leisure centre campaigners had been hoping would set up an inquiry has been abandoned due to technical difficulties. Members of...

Leisure centre protestors tell council: “we want an inquiry now, not an inquest later”

By Graham Smith About 40 protestors, campaigning to save Cornwall's leisure centres, lobbied councillors as they arrived for this morning's (Tuesday's) meeting of a key scrutiny committee. Many of...

Leisure centre closures: council committee faces 17 questions in 15 minutes, all of them from Wadebridge

By Julia Penhaligon All 17 of the public questions to tomorrow’s (Tuesday) Cornwall Council scrutiny committee have been submitted by people disputing County Hall’s proposals to close the Wadebridge...

Cornwall’s leisure centre campaigners launch website to help protest against closures

By Graham Smith Leisure centre campaigners in Wadebridge have launched a website to help raise concern about Cornwall Council’s plan to close the town’s swimming pool. The Friends of...

EXCLUSIVE: Cornwall Council has spent months preparing its leisure centre closure hit list

By Julia Penhaligon Cornwall Council has disclosed that it has known for months that its outsourced leisure centre operator is seeking major revisions to the contract it signed only...

Campaign to save Cornwall’s leisure centres given new urgency by council’s attempt to dodge scrutiny and force a decision by 15th December

By Julia Penhaligon Cornwall Council officials are trying to rush through a decision before Christmas about plans to close four leisure centres. The leisure centres under immediate threat are...

Covid-19: Government to give extra help to the “red wall” but ignores Cornwall, despite higher infection rate

By Anne North The government is about to announce a new package of measures to support local councils with high rates of Covid infection. Cornwall is not on the...

Tickets on sale now for Okehampton-Exeter daily train service, resuming next month after a 49 year wait

By Rashleigh MacFarlane Tickets have gone on sale today (Tuesday) for the first time in 49 years for regular daily train passenger services between Okehampton and Exeter.  Tickets are...

The leisure centres “watchdog” has no plans to bark – unless prompted

By Graham Smith Cornwall Council has published the agenda for next week’s “watchdog” committee which is responsible for scrutinising County Hall’s proposals to close four leisure centres: Falmouth, Launceston,...

Hands off Cornwall’s leisure centres, says swimming star Ruby

By Rashleigh MacFarlane Another swimming star has added her voice to calls to save Cornwall’s leisure centres. Ruby Griffiths, 15, from Looe, began her career with the Caradon swimming...

No answers from Cornwall Council at its first leisure centre meeting, as Tories warm to a formal inquiry

By Graham Smith Cornwall Council staged the first of its “public consultation” meetings last night (Wednesday) to gauge reaction to the proposed closure of four leisure centres. About 30...

North Cornwall flood alert as rivers swell

The Environment Agency has warned people living close to tributaries of the upper River Tamar, between Bude and Launceston,  to beware of flooding this morning (Tuesday) after nearly two...