Community News - January 2020
New ELTT Chairman
It was an honour to be appointed chairman of the East Looe Town Trust for the coming year, and I pay tribute to the skill and hard work of Phil Gibson who steps down as chairman after two years. He has agreed to take up the vice chairman role and I am grateful for his experienced back-up.
Christmas and New Year celebrations
The Trust was delighted to contribute again to Looe's Christmas lights and celebrations. This Christmas we invested in a new low energy catenary which created a cheerful canopy of lights above the Rose Garden. It was a great setting for seasonal events, choirs and band. Trust staff and resources also supported the brilliant town display masterminded by the Harbour Commissioners and Looe's enthusiastic Christmas lights volunteers. Trust staff also pitched in to help with the excellent children's, and midnight firework displays on New Year's Eve on the East Looe seafront. They had an early start next morning cleaning up broken glass and making the seafront clean and safe ready for the New Years Day swim.
Old Guildhall Museum and Gaol
We salute the hard work of our volunteer museum team who have now moved the exhibits back into the museum which had been moved to allow for significant building works in the Old Guildhall Museum and Gaol. The listed building, which is in the care and ownership of the Trust, required internal wall trusses following structural engineering advice. The work was carefully done, and we think you will hardly notice it. Pop in when the museum reopens in the Spring and check it out yourself.
Listed Building projects
Listed buildings are expensive to maintain. Our first priority project is the restoration of the Old Lifeboat Station and Watchtower, for which we are seeking funding. An early stage of the project is public involvement and consultation, which could feature events this Easter.
Second, the Guildhall Clocktower is again going to be clad in scaffolding, which will allow several things to happen. The displaced weathervane will be replaced, and the clock faces and mechanism will be inspected and repaired. A full survey of the clock tower structure and masonry will be completed by a specialist surveyor and specifications drawn up for work later in the year.
Dogs on East Looe Beach
Trustees have noted that Cornwall Council are reviewing their rules about dogs being allowed onto beaches controlled by them. But ELTT would like to make it clear that East Looe town beach, which is owned and maintained by them, will remain fully dog free throughout the year. We recognise that every day of the year can be a sandcastle day on our beach and standards of hygiene and good behaviour will be maintained year round. Second beach and Hannafore are dog friendly.
New town centre boutique
Finally we are delighted that Q for Quirky has decided to open their new boutique in Looe. It will join their successful branch in Tavistock. You will find them in the Guildhall Rose Garden where the town council used to be - and will be amazed at the transformation.
Chairman, on behalf of Trustees.
28th January 2020
As the year advances it is customary to reflect on events throughout the year. One of
the most visible changes is that the Trust has taken delivery of a new blue tractor to
keep the beach clean and welcoming. After a social media campaign the tractor has
been named Looe b’Lou – a name suggested by Cheryl Turner. The Trust are
grateful to the financial donations towards the tractor from West Looe Town Trust
and Looe Town Council.
You may also have seen our new water refill station on the seafront – which has
proved very popular and the Trust are proud to be playing a part in reducing the use
of plastic in the town. The cages on the beach for reusable beach items have
proved very popular and the Trust are pleased to be working so closely with the
Looe Marine Conservation Group who have assisted with this project.
We have continued to work with other members of the Looe Bathing Waters Project
to improve the quality of bathing water in Looe. The vital support given to this from
across the community continues to pay dividends and the Environment Agency have
just announced our best ever rating of “good” for 2019. This is very impressive
progress in a matter of a few years from poor, through sufficient to good and it will do
a great deal to reinforce the town’s reputation as an attractive tourist resort.
Trustees were pleased to be able to support organisations in the town by charitable
donations of money or office support and look forward to continuing this support.
The Old Guildhall Museum & Gaol has had a very successful year and our wonderful
team of volunteers are working on various projects for next year – including some
very exciting new additions. Check for updates on our website and facebook page.
Our volunteers work very hard – not only in the museum greeting and assisting
visitors, but also helping to research and organise items both in the museum and
from home. If you are interested in joining our team of volunteers, please contact the
Trust Office on firstname.lastname@example.org or 01503 263709.
The ‘New’ Guildhall has been host to several weddings this year – local couples and
visitors from further afield. The Guildhall Chamber is a lovely place for a wedding
ceremony, with the stained glass windows and the impressive vaulted ceiling. We
have hosted small ceremonies with just two witnesses (and a dog) to large groups
with 60 guests. We can vary the layout to make it a truly personal wedding so if you
are thinking of popping the question over the festive season – then contact the office
to book the Chamber for your special day.
As always, Looe will look fantastic at Christmas with the lights around the town. The
Trust has a new lighting scheme to make the Rose Garden look festive and will be
working with Looe Harbour Commissioners to welcome Santa to his grotto.
We wish you all a very merry Christmas and a healthy, prosperous 2020!
The Chairman and Trustees
14th November 2019