Businesses in Helston are forming their own group in a bid to be better represented in the town.

While still in the early stages, the plan is for the new business forum to work with the town council on future decisions about the town centre.

It comes after some businesses in Meneage Street felt they were not consulted properly over the the recent three-week closure or kept informed.

However, the new group will be open for all town businesses to join.

Tina Chapman-Daley, owner of Sands Clothing in Meneage Street, is one of the driving forces behind it and is currently in talks with mayor John Martin about it.

She said it was still in the process of being set up and would have its own legal identity, but explained: "I think we need, as businesses, to have representation in the town.

"This time we were caught on the back foot and we found out [about the road closure] via Facebook and newspaper articles.

"We can't complain unless we say we want to get involved."

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She added that it would be "nice to work together" with the town council on the project, saying: "It should never have been 'us' and 'them'."

Tina stressed the group was not about anti-pedestrianisation or specifically connected to recent events in Meneage Street, which only served as the prompt to get something established.

Instead the group would be looking at all areas of the town and how to support businesses in it, and encourage new custom.

"We will be all-encompassing," she added. "I hadn't realised how lacking Helston was in business community."

Tina said that although she was involved it was a mutual agreement between businesses, explaining: "Everybody had the same feeling, that we needed to do this.

"We can be involved in planning; we can be involved in the future of the town. And that's what we should be doing."

She said there were some "really big things in the pipeline if they come off," but she was still waiting on confirmation that they would be possible.

In 2012 the Helston Business Improvement Partnership (HBIP) was set up following the arrival of town centre manager Jonathan Birkett, which subsequently introduced a number of projects in the town including the programme of Christmas events that continue to take place, town cleans, hanging baskets and kick-starting the defibrillator project.

However, it disbanded in 2016 after funding ran out and the town voted against becoming a Business Improvement District.

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