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14.09.04
Entrepreneurial spirit of Harvey's Foundry renewed

Harvey's Foundry was given a new lease of life in 2003 with the help of Objective One investment, to house new workspace and offices for Cornish businesses, whilst preserving the immense historical significance of the foundry through developing an archive and educational programme. The reinvention of Harvey's Foundry symbolises the new and exciting phase that Cornwall is entering, where the entrepreneurial spirit of great Cornishmen like Robert Trevithick and John Harvey is again stirring to make Cornwall economically successful.

The spirit of Harvey's Foundry was renewed in 2000 with a £1.9 million regeneration programme to implement the first phase of the project which has seen workspace, offices, archive, visitor facilities and educational resources being created. The project has been made possible through The Princes Trust Foundation initiative 'Regeneration Through Heritage' with investment of nearly £800,000 from the Objective One Programme. The environmentally sound development has been short-listed for numerous awards and has been sympathetically restored using local products and innovative infastructure.

Caroline Sargent of Penwith District Council said: "They say that Hayle's progress stopped when the clock stopped on the tower of 24 Foundry Square. Now it's started again, there's a new feeling of optimism about regeneration in the town."

The first tenants in the new foundry building were Total Marketing who, aided by the Prince's Trust, moved to new premises at Harvey's Foundry in March due to expansion needs. In the entrepreneurial spirit of Harvey's Foundry, Total Marketing are expanding once again with the launch of a new initiative called Brand Builders, designed to help companies develop and engage in new marketing strategies. By delivering a comprehensive marketing strategy, detailed sales plans and assistance on presenting products to key markets, Brand Builders aims to increase markets for products and act as a solution to any problems companies may be experiencing in this area.

As well as having clients from across Cornwall, their business is not constrained by geography, which enables Total Marketing to take on clients in Sussex, Wales and Cheshire and it is hoped Brand Builders will also attract clients nationally. Martin Strutton of Total Marketing said: "Harvey's Foundry seemed to symbolise the regeneration of Cornwall's rich business heritage. We saw moving here as an opportunity to have offices that reflected what we are in business to do, which is to help facilitate a renaissance of local business."

Similarly recent young graduate, James Freeman, has been able to set up a new business, in the building, Freeman Christie Graphic Design, which also had funding from the Prince's Trust.

All involved in the Harvey's Foundry scheme have received investment from the Objective One Programme and Objective One funded projects such as Finance Cornwall and Business Link. The South West Regional Development Agency, Cornwall County Council, English Heritage and the Single Regeneration Budget alongside Penwith District Council and Hayle Town Council have also invested in the regeneration of the Foundry. Carleen Kelemen, Director of the Objective One Programme said: "The renewed spirit of the foundry reflects renewed confidence in the potential of Cornwall as a place of economic and business excellence and Total Marketing is symbolic of the skills and dynamism of businesses that we are lucky to have in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly."

Cornish business whether mining, tourism, fishing or the arts have all witnessed the ups and downs of business life in Cornwall. But now there are the resources to create the groundwork for a sustainable economic future. Cornwall will see the benefits of national and worldwide links that accompany a university in Cornwall and recognition for the Knowledge Spa and Peninsula Medical School.

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Editor's notes:

The Harvey's Foundry project has 3 phases.

The first phase has now been completed which has included the restoration of Grade 2 listed 24 Foundry Square for archive and office uses, the development of a derelict site with 8,000 sq. ft quality offices to promote business growth and job creation.

From the mid eighteenth century Hayle developed into one of the Cornwall's most important ports serving the surrounding mines and home to the iron foundry of Harvey and Company (1779-1903) and copper smelters, The Cornish Copper Company (1756-1869). These rival companies became internationally renowned for their engineering expertise and the global dominance of mining equipment markets and were largely responsible for Hayle's expansion throughout the nineteenth century. With the export of Cornish technology and workforce there followed language, culture and ideas. So it is that pasties are eaten from Mexico to Queensland, magnificent, but indubitably Central American Methodist chapels are to be found in deepest Mexico, rugby was spread the world over, brass bands and choir singing are heard in the outback and the veldt. Whole communities of Australians, Africans, and Americans still count themselves Cornish at heart and celebrate that fact.

Harvey's foundry was also the gathering place of eminent men such as Robert Trevithick who developed steam pumping technology; John Taylor who built the Redruth and Chacewater railway line which carried 50,000 tonnes of ore in its first year, and Arthur Wolf's steam stamps used at Cam Brea mines in 1813. It was these men who had the spirit and determination to develop the efficiency of the mining industry to maintain Cornwall's globally dominant position throughout the Industrial Revolution.

Some were working at the boundaries of technologies so new that only a handful of people in the world could appreciate their discoveries; some saw opportunities for riches, grasped and pursued them, building fortunes which made them the new elite of their societies. Some, like Captain Thomas of Dolcoath, could make or break a mine and all played their part in Cornwall's transformation.

Harvey's Foundry, whose reputation spread far beyond the banks of the Tamar, was a product of its time, catching the dawn of the Industrial Revolution and reaping the benefits of the exciting entrepreneurial spirit that was apparent in the early nineteenth century. However, the crash of copper and tin prices in 1866 and competition from foreign mines meant that the golden age of Cornish mining was over by 1870s. The foundry remained open until 1903 when it ceased operation. Hayle remained a port throughout World War Two and maintained a commercial shipping presence up until 1977 when the town then lost its significance as an important industrial centre.

Cornwall has also suffered in recent years with the decline in the fishing, agricultural and tourism industries. However with investment from Europe through Objective One there is now the potential for another great period for Cornwall where innovation, knowledge and entrepreneurial skill are once gain celebrated – a future where young people are able to study and work in Cornwall and young vibrant Cornish businesses are able to evolve due to improved transport links and IT infrastructure. The arts community is gaining huge recognition and our traditional industries are now finding the resources to improve and adapt to be viable businesses. With these resources, Cornwall can build bridges nationally and indeed globally once again.

Harvey's Foundry is expected to play a new leading role as part of the Cornwall's bid for World Heritage Site status. In 1992 industrial heritage and cultural landscapes were identified as 2 categories in the World Heritage Site tables that are underrepresented. Industrial sites account for less than 5% of the lists. The nominated site is distinctive in that it is the embodiment of the profoundly important process of pioneering non-ferrous metal mining industrialisation and innovation and its social and economic consequences exemplified by the wider cultural landscape.

Harvey's Foundry has received investment from:

• Objective One Programme

• Cornwall County Council

• English Heritage

• Penwith District Council

• South West Regional Development Agency

• Single Regeneration Budget

• Hayle Town Council

Total Marketing has received investment from the Princes Trust in association with Finance Cornwall (Finance Cornwall is a £20 million investment fund backed by £9 million from the Objective One European Regional Development Fund).

Caroline Sergeant
Harvey's Foundry Trust
Penwith District Council
01736 336689

Rachael Clayton
Ashley Public Relations
01579 370991

Sonrissa Hipkins & Martin Stratton
Total Marketing
01736 759284

Ainsley Cocks
Cornwall World Heritage Site Bid
01872 322585
www.cornish-mining.org.uk

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Sue Wolstenholme
Objective One Communications
Objective One Partnership Office
Castle House
Pydar Street
Truro TR1 2UD
Mobile: 07973 813647
Telephone: 01579 370991

lmroberts@cornwall.gov.uk

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