Cornwall Harbours Board has unanimously agreed to approve the use of £60,000 to clear a forgotten and overgrown area at the far end of Newham, giving it a new lease of life and potentially bringing employment to the city.

The roundabout site totals more than 7,600 square metres and is unused by the Port of Truro Estate, which owns it.

A meeting of the board heard that pressure on quay space and areas for boat storage locally provides an opportunity to increase services offered at the port.

The board’s maritime manager, Chris Jones said: “Commercial shipping movements have reduced significantly in recent years and the port must diversify to continue to generate a surplus.”

The meeting heard the area had a “chequered history”, including “incursion” incidents involving Travellers who had set up camp on the land.

A previous proposal by a community interest company (CIC) has completed phase one of a projected four-phase development, which would include workshops and a visitor centre, but hasn’t progressed any further.

Most recently, a small area of land within the area was used to support a highways project and some of the site cleared to provide a works compound.

The opportunity now exists to clear the remaining site and improve security with fencing ahead of letting and/or development.

Board chairman Cllr Loic Rich said the site was a “real asset” for Truro and future plans could bring employment to the area.

Vital boat storage for the estuary could be a future use for the site.

As a secure compound, the site has the earning potential of £41,000 to £75,000 per year either through rents or the provision of boat storage.

There is also the opportunity to consider business units and workshops to replace old buildings on neighbouring Lighterage Quay which require rebuilding or replacement in coming years.

Cornwall Harbours Board unanimously approved the use of the Port of Truro’s reserve account to clear the roundabout site and make it secure at a cost of £64,518.

This includes £59,518 for clearance, surface improvements and fencing with access gates, plus a further £5,000 for planning and ecology reports.