Falmouth council given six months to come up with Ships and Castles deal or it will be sold

Ships and Castles in Falmouth
Ships and Castles in Falmouth. Credit: ITV West Country

Cornwall Council’s cabinet have given Falmouth Town Council six months to come up with a deal for taking over a popular leisure centre and swimming pool in Falmouth.

The Ships and Castles Leisure Centre site was closed in March despite campaigners' fight to keep it going.

A group of protesters gathered outside of Ships and Castles on Wednesday (20 July) - they want it back open as soon as possible.

Those in attendance were some of the last people to swim at Ships and Castles before the pool closed. Now this group want to ensure they are not the very last, and that their pool will open once again.

The only way to do that now is for Cornwall Council to devolve the site to Falmouth Town Council.

Ships and Castles flume Credit: ITV West Country News

If the devolution deal proposal is not accepted, Cornwall Council will sell off the centre with some of the sale proceeds going towards a new leisure centre to serve the people of Falmouth and Penryn. 

Jayne Kirkham, Falmouth Town Councillor said: “We felt we had to step in, it got to the point where it was either going to be sold and we weren’t quite sure of the curtilage of what was going to be sold as well, or we stepped in and offered for it to be devolved and retain that headland and the consultation was very clear, that the people of Falmouth wanted us to do, so all we can do is give it a shot.

"If it doesn’t work it doesn’t work but we felt we had to try.”

Ben Leach Credit: ITV West Country

Campaigner Ben Leach had hoped that the option to sell would be taken off the table.

He said: “Falmouth Town Council have been through all of the due diligence, have been through the business plan, have been through the money and they say it can work.

"They wouldn’t have said yesterday that they would take on the headland and get it all devolved if they didn’t believe it could work and we can turn it into a thriving destination, not only for the people of Falmouth, Penryn and the surrounding villages but for Cornwall as a whole and tourists and visitors too.”