PLANS have beeb submitted to transform two listed buildings in Camborne into a community centre complete with a library and events space.

Poynton Bradbury Architects propose to sympathetically restore the former boarding school, the Basset Centre and neighbouring White House, a former villa, by joining the buildings together with a glass atrium and a new purpose-built performance and events space.

The renamed Basset Community Hub will house a modern, spacious library, a dedicated youth space, a community café and an heritage exhibition experience including a new permanent home for the Trevithick Society’s Puffing Devil replica engine.

The project will also include sympathetic repairs to windows and replacing the modern concrete roof tiles on the White House with natural slate, mirroring its original construction.

Basset Community Hub ( )

Poynton Bradbury Architects, who have offices in St Ives and Exeter, say the multi-million-pound Town Deal funded project will transform two listed buildings in the heart of Cornwall’s UNESCO Cornish Mining World Heritage Site.

The architectural firm’s heritage team has 100 years of combined experience and they have worked on hundreds of heritage projects since 1973 when the architectural practice was founded.

Director Chris Turner said: “Combining the Basset Centre and neighbouring White House sites within a single project ensures the long-term future of the two important Grade II Listed buildings that form an integral part of the town’s streetscape and heritage.”

“The design intention is to maintain the separate and distinct identities of the buildings while at the same time connecting them via a new performance space.”

Emma Hosking, an RIBA-accredited Conservation Architect from Poynton Bradbury Architects’ heritage team, added: “A lot of work goes into a heritage project.

“We visit the site taking in everything about the area and the influences that have gone into the building(s). It’s about understanding the story and history of these structures and bringing them into the here and now in an architecturally sensitive way.”

The project is supported with funding from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUH&C) Town Fund, Cornwall Council (CC) matched funding, with further potential funding from the National Heritage Lottery Fund (NHLF) still to be secured.

Poynton Bradbury Architects have worked on a large number of heritage projects over the years, including the King Edward Mine in Camborne, St John’s Hall and the Jubilee Pool, both in Penzance, the Wheal Martyn Clay Works Museum in St Austell, and other regional landmarks. 

The heritage and conservation team are currently the only RIBA accredited conservation professionals in Cornwall. They share an in-depth knowledge and experience of working with historic buildings. The team consists of Director Laura Highton, who gained her RIBA Specialist Conservation Architect (SCA) status in November and Paul Perry, who is also an RIBA SCA.

They are joined by Emma Hosking, who was reaccredited last summer as RIBA Conservation Architect and Matt Wills, a Conservation Registrant. Paul is also registered on the AABC register as Architects Accredited in Building Conservation.