New plans have been drawn up to convert Old County Hall in Truro into residential apartments.

Planning permission had previously been granted to convert the Grade II listed building into a hotel along with leisure facilities such as a pool. The plans also included new residential units and the conversion of a coach house which have been completed.

However the hotel conversion never got started and the building was sold on to a new developer – Acorn Blue.

They have now submitted a pre-application to Cornwall Council with proposals to convert Old County Hall into 35 residential apartments.

The new proposals also include the construction of a new apartment building on the car park to the south of Old County Hall and two or three town houses to the east.

In a project summary the applicants state that they “fully acknowledge the historic significance of Old County Hall” and say that they want to give it a “sustainable future”.

It also says that while the existing planning permission would result in “greater intervention and loss of historic fabric” the new proposals would be “more modest”.

The applicants state that they want to work with the council’s historic environment team to ensure that the proposals are “acceptable and supported”.


Under the new plans, while changes would be made to the interior of the building to create the 35 apartments, there would only be “minor alterations” to the outside of the building. Car parking would also be provided and there would be landscaping around the site.

The new additional apartment building is “designed to improve and enhance the setting of Old County Hall by creating an enclosed landscaped courtyard garden area on its south side”.

Old County Hall, which was built in 1890, was sold earlier this year for £3.5million. It had been the head office of Cornwall County Council until 1966 when it moved to New County Hall on Treyew Road.

The earlier plans to convert Old County Hall into a hotel and spa had been put forward by Nigel Carpenter, owner of St Michael’s Hotel and Spa in Falmouth.

On Cornwall Council’s website the pre-application enquiry from Acorn Blue for the new apartment plans is awaiting a decision.