The Culture and Creative Economy Team works on a wide range of projects. These are both large and small. 

A Culture Investment Board helps us to identify priorities for investment. The Board brings together public sector funders. The Board supports the development of culture in Cornwall. The following organisations take part in the Board:

Representatives from the culture and creative sector also contribute to the Board.

Cornwall Council has an agreement, called a Culture Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). It helps us work strategically with these partners.

View a snapshot of the work our team was involved with recently.


More detailed information about some projects are available:

Cornwall Council is fortunate to have a significant art collection. This includes work by artists such as Barbara Hepworth, Alfred Wallis and Patrick Heron. The calibre of the collection reflects Cornwall's significance in the art world. It boasts a range of artwork from the Nineteenth Century to the present day. The majority of this work forms the Schools Art Collection which started in 1961. Find out more about the history of the Schools Art Collection

The paintings, prints and sculptures in the Schools Art Collection are currently managed by the Royal Cornwall Museum. They organise:

  • Loans of work to schools
  • An exhibition programme
  • Educational workshops
  • Learning resources

It has also on occasion loaned work to local museums and galleries.

The Leach Pottery in St Ives manages the ceramic works that are part of the collection. These can be enjoyed as part of a visit to the studio, museum and gallery there.

Also, there are a handful of works that the Council has acquired that are on display at Council offices. Alongside these, there are many commemorative items such as photographs and plaques that have been donated to the Council.

View a list of the Council's Art Collections

We are often asked how much the collections are worth. Please note that we are unable to make this information public due to security reasons

Find out more about oil paintings that are in public ownership throughout the UK by visiting the Art UK website.

There are also large collections of artefacts in the ownership of the Council. These are managed by the following organisations:

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In 2019, the Creative, Health and Wellbeing Partnership was created. This was commissioned by the Culture and Creative Partnerships team and Public Health teams of Cornwall Council.

Arts Well is a Cornish social enterprise. They champion culture and creativity in helping health and wellbeing. They helped establishing the Partnership in January 2020.

The aim is to help enable the creative and cultural sector to improve health and wellbeing. This is for individuals and communities in Cornwall and Isles of Scilly.

Specific aims

  • Add to the development of the Health and Wellbeing Strategy for Cornwall and Isles of Scilly.
  • Develop the skills, knowledge and resources of the sector. Sector workers can get involved in local health and wellbeing priorities.
  • Look for opportunities to improve local practice and lever in more investment.
  • Develop and oversee delivery of a Partnership Action Plan.
  • Make sure the sector is connected. This is to inform and improve creative health and wellbeing policy and practice.
  • Encourage improved creative health and wellbeing programmes and activities.


Board members come from a range of sectors. The Board is co-chaired by:

  • -the Director of Public Health (Deputised) and
  • -the Senior Officer for Creative and Cultural Industries.

Members represent the following organisations:

  • Public Health
  • Adult Social Care
  • Children, Young People and Families
  • NHS Kernow
  • Social Prescribing Network
  • Cornwall Foundation Trust
  • Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trust
  • Cornwall Museums Partnership
  • Cornwall Council elected members
  • Creative Kernow
  • Falmouth University
  • Creative Industries
  • Hall for Cornwall
  • Newlyn Art Gallery and The Exchange
  • Music Service Trust

Wider engagement

The creative sector in Cornwall has lots of micro-businesses and freelance creative practitioners. This sub-sector is mostly engaged in community activity with health and wellbeing impacts. The Partnership is considering how to engage this group better. They are central to the delivery of creative health and wellbeing work. Proposals under consideration include: 

  • Developing a network of place-based ‘ambassadors’;
  • To have local events to gather and share information about the plans of the Partnership;
  • Developing a digital presence for the Partnership with interactive elements. These include: an online forum, live streaming of meetings, webinars.


The impact of Covid-19 required a new pathway to develop the Partnership. It has demonstrated the value of culture and creativity for health and wellbeing. The Partnership’s activities include programmes that support staff health and wellbeing. Other activities support practitioners to develop their socially engaged practice. This is both during the crisis and in the recovery phase.

Health and Wellbeing Strategy

The Partnership will be active in the public engagement and delivery planning phase. This was originally due to take place between April and June 2020. This will include creative engagement processes. It will ensure that the creative and cultural sector’s potential is used in local delivery plans.  

Are you working in the culture and creative sector in Cornwall? Do you want to know about funding and other opportunities? Join our database

Cornwall Council supports innovative projects. This enables a wider audience to be creative and to engage with our culture in Cornwall. The Culture Card is one of these projects, run by Cornwall Museums Partnership.

In 2016, Cornwall Museums Partnership began working with Carefree Cornwall and Penlee House. This resulted in a pilot project with young people leaving care.

This led to a second project with Penlee House and the Royal Cornwall Museum. Care leavers worked with artist Emma Saffy Wilson. They visited London galleries and exhibiting their own artwork in Cornwall. During 2018/19, seven museums and galleries across Cornwall participated in the project.

The next phase of the scheme has seen all children in care and care leavers in Cornwall receive a ‘Culture Card'. A free pass enabling themselves plus one to access museums taking part in the scheme.

Covid-19 has presented a challenge to this project. Before they would meet in museums. Now artist Emma Saffy Wilson has been working with staff and young people. She is using innovative ways to fight loneliness and isolation during the pandemic. One of these ways was to send art materials to care leavers. Now they can explore creativity during ‘digital group sessions’ and creative walks with Emma.

Young people from Carefree have also been working with Emma and staff. They have created a virtual ‘Museum of Carefree’. They shared stories and memories of their experiences. During lockdown this has taken the shape of a podcast and plans for a future touring exhibition.

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There are over 70 museums in Cornwall which attract over 1.5 million visits each year!  Museums are an important part of Cornwall’s cultural offer. Museums enrich the lives of local people and visitors alike. Our museums give us great opportunities to learn about our past and to inspire us in the future. Museums can connect us with our local area and community. There are lots of ways to enjoy museums by making a visit, the work they do with schools, becoming a volunteer. Our museums host a range of events. These include International Mining Games, conferences and theatre productions. You can even get married in some of them!

To find out more about the many museums in Cornwall visit the Museums in Cornwall website.

We work with, and invest in, the Cornwall Museums Partnership (CMP). This innovative organisation has gained national recognition for its work. CMP encourages collaborative working within the museum sector. It provides a range of specialist support:

  • support in fundraising and income generation
  • a professional advisory service for museum staff and volunteers
  • a range of training and events.

Delivery of the Cornwall Museums Strategy 2018-22 is being led by CMP. The strategy sets out a series of joint intentions for the sector. This means it can continue its long-term progress and success.

The Arts Council and Cornwall Council fund Cornwall’s Museum Development Officer service. Cornwall Museums Partnership runs the service. The Museum Development Officer works with museums across Cornwall. They provide professional advice and guidance. This enables museums to achieve sustainable improvements. It also helps to maximize museum benefits to audiences and their communities.

Unlike many other local authorities Cornwall Council doesn’t run any museums.

We have a management agreement in place with The Museum of Cornish Life. We also invest in four heritage organisations through the Culture and Creative Investment Programme: 

Royal Cornwall Museum looks after the Council's Schools Art Collection for us. You can find out more on the above Art Collections at Cornwall Council section.

Are you working in the culture and creative sector in Cornwall? Do you want to know about funding and other opportunities? Join our database

Newlyn Art Gallery and The Exchange

Newlyn Art Gallery and The Exchange is an educational arts charity. They present contemporary work in all media. They represent regional, national and international artists across its two sites in West Cornwall. Cornwall Council supports this cultural organisation thanks to an annual revenues grant. They are also an Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisation.

New Voices

New Voices is jointly funded by the Arts Council England and Cornwall Council. This programme explores ways to give voices to different communities and individuals. As an Arts Council Collection National Partner, they draw on the 8,000 works contained within the Collection.

For its first project, they invited a year 5 class from Newlyn School. They selected 10 works to exhibit in their school for a year. The children selected works that they felt a direct connection with.

“Our children feel so privileged that we have been entrusted with this artwork. They feel valued and feel they have a voice. The impact on their self-worth has been significant,” said Isabel Stephens, Headteacher

A series of activities has been developed with the school to punctuate the year. These include:

This was originally programmed for June 2020, but now planned for a date in 2021.

The second New Voices project Go On Being So is an exhibition curated by the MBA Collective. They are a group of art, photography and graphics students from Mounts Bay Academy, aged between 12 and 16. This opened at Newlyn Art Gallery in February and will remain on show when the gallery reopens.

A conversation around what it means to be a global citizen began their exploration of the Arts Council Collection. It brought together a selection of works that say something about the world today and their place in it. MBA Collective looked for works which:

“…said something about big issues for us personally, which are universal to people of our age such as mental health and equality…” [Izzy].

Displayed at The Exchange, in the centre of Penzance, is Hippo Campus: Where We Learn. It is an exhibition that explores alternative schooling, peer-to-peer learning and self-education. During the temporary closure, film and audio works are available online. Hippo Campus’ Lunchtime School continues as a group zoom session on alternate Fridays.

The gallery has since worked with LGBTQIA+ young people. This was worked through the Intercom Trust and their YAY groups. The gallery developed an exhibition and programme of events in 2021 to celebrate queer histories and creativity. Another project using the Arts Council Collection will be with WILD Young Parents Project. This is a Cornwall-wide charity supporting young families.

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The Cornish are a national minority and Cornwall has its own language.  They are both recognised officially by the UK Government.

It is the only national minority and native UK language without a media service. Today, these are both under represented by public service broadcasters.

You can find out more about our project to create a Cornish PSB:

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ERDF and HM Government logos

The Penzance Creative Cluster project aims to provide new workspaces for creative businesses. Check this video to find out more.

The project will see a new purpose-built facility at Causewayhead. It will provide around 1,500m² of workspace over three floors. It will include:

  • studios
  • space for collaboration
  • informal meetings
  • networking and hot desking for a range of creative businesses

This will be visual artists and potters, to architects and digital media companies.

Penzance is the ideal location for the building. It has rooted links with culture and the arts, and a growing number of creative businesses. The Penzance Creative Cluster is being funded by Cornwall Council (£2.6m) and the European Regional Development Fund (£3.2m)

With an elegant and modern design, the new building will form a landmark gateway into the town centre. It is being built on the foundations of the former livestock market and reservoir. The project supports the wider town centre regeneration strategy. This scheme will encourage new employment both within and outside of the project. This would increase footfall to the town centre and support existing local businesses.

The project is supported by the Penzance Regeneration Partnership. It has evolved from the Penzance Spatial Study and is a key part of the strategy for diversifying the town.

The Penzance Creative Cluster will be built to BREEAM ‘Excellent’ standard. This will minimise carbon emissions during both construction and operation. Construction is expected to start in summer 2021 with the building opening in autumn 2022.

Do you still have questions about this project? Please contact Claire Hurley at

Are you working in the culture and creative sector in Cornwall? Do you want to know about funding and other opportunities? Join our database

Cornwall Council supports Screen Cornwall. It is part of our commitment to ensure our creative industries in Cornwall can thrive. 

Screen Cornwall’s vision is to grow Cornwall’s screen sector. This organisation helps individuals and other organisations who work in film, cinema, TV, gaming and more. They want creative production and local talent to flourish. They work with skilled professionals as well as emerging talent.

Are you working in the culture and creative sector in Cornwall? Do you want to know about funding and other opportunities? Join our database

Cornwall Council leads the Cornish language programme.  It has also established the Cornish Language Office. The Cornish Language Lead is responsible for:

  • increasing the use of Cornish in the work of the Council
  • giving advice to organisations who want to use Cornish
  • coordinating projects in the community

The Cornish Language Team

  • Vacant, Cornish Language Lead
  • Sam Rogerson, Support Officer

Are you working in the culture and creative sector in Cornwall? Do you want to know about funding and other opportunities? Join our database

As part of the wider Liskeard Cattle Market redevelopment  the Workshed will provide flexible units and collaborative workspace for businesses focused on the digital and creative industries. Details on the units that will be available let can be viewed at Vickery Holman .

Are you working in the culture and creative sector in Cornwall? Do you want to know about funding and other opportunities? Join our database

Delivered in Partnership with Falmouth University this research project sought to understand the role that creative hubs play in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.  The project was funded through Research England’s Strategic Priorities Fund.  Explore further details and the full report on the Falmouth University website.

Are you working in the culture and creative sector in Cornwall? Do you want to know about funding and other opportunities? Join our database

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Filming 'Mermaids' On Location A Cornish Short Film
Hippo Campus Where We Learn Installation Shot By Steve Tanner
Man Engine At Geevor Tim Mine Photo By Ainsley Cocks
Pupils From Newlyn School Select 10 Art Works To Be Exhibited In Their School For A Year
The Penzance Creative Cluster Project Provides New High Quality Workspaces For Businesses In The Creative Sector

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