Devolution within Cornwall

Cornwall Council is committed to the principles of Localism and Devolution

The Cabinet Member with responsibility for the Council’s work on devolution proposals, working with local councils and community groups is Councillor Edwina Hannaford.

Localism and devolution's primary purpose is to help sustain locally-led service delivery at a time of unprecedented budget challenges for local government.

Cornwall Council adopted 'A Framework for Town and Parish Councils and Community groups to have an increased role in service delivery' in May 2014, with a review agreed by Members in April 2015. Subsequent work with the Council’s Neighbourhoods Overview and Scrutiny Committee in October 2017 has examined and supported a review of the devolution work programme, based on criteria to allow the large number of propopsals to be prioritised.  Officers are now working on the delivery of that programme with many local councils and community groups.

Devolution was recognised by the Council, in 2015, as a key component of the Council Strategy 2015-2019.

You can read about the Council's vision for localism and devolution, within Cornwall, in the document: Localism and Devolution - A fresh approach and in the Localism Strategy 2016, which is part of the Council's Organisational Development Framework.

The starting point for any discussion about a local proposal can be via your Cornwall Councillor and /or your Community Link Officer who will liaise with the Cornwall Councillor to explore what opportunities might exist.

The devolution work programme is now prioritised and delivered in accordance with criteria that was considered by the Council’s Neighbourhoods Overview and Scrutiny Committee in October 2017. A number of projects that were already started prior to the October 2017 meeting have continued to receive resource to conclude them however.  This was undertaken to prevent abortive work on existing projects.

The criteria against which projects are scored can be viewed here (Scroll down to Item NSC/22 Devolution Work Programme – Prioritisation Proposals, Appendix 1 Agenda for Neighbourhoods Overview and Scrutiny Committee on Friday, 27th October, 2017, 11.00 am - Cornwall Council

The prioritised work list, scored against the criteria, can be viewed here.  The list is in scored order, highest score first and reflects the order in which devolution proposals will now be assigned resources to deliver them.

Please note that some projects are being led by property colleagues and are included for completeness so therefore may not be scored under this programme.  A number of proposals are still being scoped and therefore are awaiting a score.

If you feel that your proposal is not yet listed and possibly should be, please contact you Community Link Officer to discuss whether it should be included here.

The list orders proposals in terms of their score and therefore gives an indication of where in the queue it sits.  The Council is delivering in the order of 20-30 proposals a year at the present time, based on the scale and complexity of those projects.

Once work starts on a proposal, your Community Link Officer will work closely with you to co-design a timeline for delivery.  This is a relatively new work of working that the Council is currently piloting, based on feedback from partners working with us on previous projects.

Several assets and services have been successfully devolved to town and parish councils and community organisations. You can read about them on our completed devolution projects page.

To see an interactive map showing the spread of devolution projects across the county please visit our Devolution heat map page

Read news about Devolution in Cornwall

Read the LGC 'Power to the People' article featuring Cornwall's progress around devolution - see Chapter 7 or click on the 'Cornwall' tab at the top of the page.

Cornwall Council is already working with lots of communities to deliver Devolution. If your organisation is considering how Devolution of a Council asset or service could benefit your community we recommend you read about how the Council can help Devolution happen.  

Once you know what you would like to achieve you may want to find out how other communities have been involved by reading or watching our Devolution Case Studies.

We have developed a range of Guides and Checklists to support organisations to develop devolution projects and proposals.

Our Resources and Advice page has links to a wealth of additional information, resources and funding advice that our partners may find useful.

You may also find Training and Capacity Building will support you in your aims to develop your devolution project.

We welcome interest from groups interested in taking over the running of Council services at any time and would encourage you to speak to us in the first instance to find out more. Please get in touch with the Communities and Devolution team using the contact details on the right of this page.

As well as devolving services and assets to local councils, groups and organisations within Cornwall, Cornwall Council is also having powers devolved to Cornwall from London.

Cornwall also has a Cornwall Devolution Deal agreed with the Government in July 2015 for devolution to Cornwall from London,which gives Cornwall greater powers over public sector funding. Cornwall is the first authority to agree a devolution deal with the Government, which was agreed following the submission of the successful Case for Cornwall.