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A former HSBC bank in Redruth is set to reopen its doors after being left vacant for five years.
The historic building at 81 Fore Street will be used as a temporary home for local businesses, and then as a centre to promote cycling from grassroots to professional elites.
The building was the former London Joint City & Midland Bank, established in the town in 1920. By 1923, it became the Midland Bank.
But in May 2017, HSBC shut the Redruth branch as part of a wider closure of 62 branches across the UK.
When the building was put on the market in February, the Redruth High Streets Heritage Action Zones team saw an opportunity to use the building as a temporary home for tenants of The Buttermarket shopping arcade.
The Buttermarket complex of buildings is set to undergo a £3 million pound renovation this autumn, meaning a number of tenants will have to leave the site when building works begin.
With the former bank empty, they can now be temporarily accommodated by Redruth Revival.
Once that renovation is completed in two years time, the former bank building will become the headquarters of the newly established Saint Piran Cycling Community Interest Company.
The aim is to create a hub for the promotion of cycling at all levels, to help develop Redruth as a destination for events and activities.
It's the idea of Richard 'Ricci' Pascoe, who has a long association with Redruth.
Ricci is the Team Principal at Saint Piran Pro Cycling: a men’s team of 16 riders, women’s team of 14 riders and 0503 development team of 6 riders.
He hopes the building will become a centre for promoting the network of on and off-road cycle routes and trails in Cornwall, building on the success of the Tour of Britain in 2021.
Ricci said: “This is an incredibly exciting moment for the newly established Saint Piran Cycling CIC.
"Over the next few years, we will be establishing the building as the headquarters for Saint Piran Cycling, a hub for managing cycling events across Cornwall and beyond, for growing grassroots and community engagement with cycling.
"We want to promote fitness, good nutrition, health, and wellbeing through leading a more active life.''
Judy Davidson MBE, Chair of Redruth Revival CIC said: “It’s fantastic to be working on another project with the Redruth HSHAZ team, building on our experience of bringing back into use historic buildings that have fallen into a poor state of repair over the years.
"Redruth has a remarkable collection of fine buildings that hark back to its previous mining wealth, but which now need to be repurposed to help revitalise the town centre.
"We can’t wait to reopen the doors to the public," she added.
Attending the opening of the newly refurbished bank building was Camborne & Redruth MP George Eustice, who said town centres need to be more of a mixed space in order to survive.
George Eustice MP for Camborne and Redruth: “The traditional, 20th century model of retail being the focus of town centres and residential being primarily on the outskirts of towns has run its course.
"The purchase of the old HSBC building is a perfect example of community-led regeneration helping to reshape the prosperity of our town centres.
"Redruth will be able to ramp up its reputation as a centre of creativity, enterprise, and home to Cornwall’s only professional cycling team.”
The cycle hub is expected to be launched in the Spring of 2024 once the Buttermarket redevelopment is complete.