PA23/00887/PREAPP: A request for advice prior to making an application, known as a pre-application has been made to Cornwall Council by Bodmin Town Council.

They are seeking advice on proposed works to their historic Shire House building in order to improve accessibility and the safety of the building.

Until recent years, the Shire House was the base for the town council’s operations, but due to the issues in the building, this was moved to the adjacent Shire Hall, formerly the town’s county courts.

In the application, Bodmin Town Council described the building as thus: “The Grade II* listed House was initially built in 1840 by Joseph Pascoe of Bodmin. The House was built to supplement the Shire Hall and was once used as judges’ lodgings.

“The house has three storeys and a basement with well-proportioned rooms, historic details and good natural light.

“Today, Shire House is used predominately as archive and office space with the function suite to the rear. Much of the upper floors are unused due to inadequate means of escape.”

Bodmin Town Council told Cornwall Council it wanted to do the following: “All works pertain to Shire House:

1 Repairs to leaning chimney adjacent to east hip of roof

2 Health and safety amendments to main internal staircase to prevent falls

3 Installation of new personnel elevator internally to improve access and usability of the existing building

4 Reinstatement of the original entrance arrangements to main entrance lobby (removal of 2 no stud partition walls which are not original to the building, making good)

“Possible minor interior reconfiguration of partition walls to improve usability and versatility of this community building, alter bathroom arrangements to be more accessible and comply with the Equality Act 2010.”

They also asked the following questions from Cornwall Council, namely: “Bodmin Town Council own and maintain the bus stop outside of Shire Hall and this is in the way of the access required for temporary scaffolding to the east corner of Shire Hall to reach the leaning chimney to be repaired. Can this be temporarily dismantled and stored by BTC and a pole and sign be installed during repair works?

“We believe Cornwall Council has previously cut down a tree which may have been dangerous, but this has now left a decaying stump in the middle of the pavement by the bus stop. Can we remove this or can CC please? What making good arrangements will be required?”

Cornwall Council is currently considering this pre-application request.