Transforming a 400-year old former cattle market info a community space and creative hub

    Cornwall Council
    2018 – 2019


    Planning application secured


    Phase 1 development cost


    The new centre is expected to add around £1.2m a year to the local economy.


    The new centre will provide 17 flexible working units.


    After nearly 400 years in operation, the Cattle Market in Liskeard was closed permanently in 2017. Cornwall Council has been working with Liskeard Town Council, local Cornwall Council elected members, and other stakeholders to identify future options for the Council owned site.


    Inner Circle was appointed to produce a Strategic Outline Case to guide the development of the masterplan and manage the first phase’s design and planning submission.

    Liskeard Cattle Market Inner Circle Consulting
    Existing cattle market site. © Inner Circle Consulting.
    Liskeard Cattle Market phase 1 proposal. © JTP architects.

    Client Objective

    Liskeard Cattle Market was the hub of community live and commercial activity for generations of families. Its closure left a fawning gap in the social and economic fabric of the town and the Council agreed that action was needed to re-energise the town. Cornwall Council aimed to revitalise the 1.36 hectares cattle market site and the adjacent 0.51-hectare Liskerret Centre site by creating space for the community and creative industries and deliver new housing with an emphasis on bringing more local people and visitors into Liskeard. Every stage of the project had a strong focus on community participation so that local people could drive a local solution.


    Cornwall Council first commissioned Inner Circle to deliver a Strategic Outline Case for the whole masterplan. This exercise included an options appraisal and the selection of a preferred option.


    ICC was commissioned again to manage Phase 1 of the masterplan design process up to RIBA Stage 3 as well as support the review and submission of the planning application. The first phase proposals achieved the Council’s ambitions for regeneration of Liskeard Cattle Market by including  a new creative workspace hub, a new market place, a new market canopy, and inclusive improvements to the surrounding public realm.


    The main component of Phase 1 is the 400 sqm creative workspace hub, The Workshed, with a development cost of £5.6m, thereby providing affordable workspace for the local creative industries. The cost will be covered from different sources; 60% from the European Regional Development Fund, a £590,000 grant from the Government’s Local Growth Fund, and the remaining from Cornwall Council capital projects investment.

    Liskeard Cattle Market Inner Circle Consulting
    Historic Cattle Market image. © Google images.
    Liskeard Cattle Market Inner Circle Consulting
    Consultation event prior to planning submission. © Inner Circle Consulting.
    Liskeard Cattle Market Inner Circle Consulting
    Liskeard cattle market phase 1 proposal. © JTP architects.

    Project Impact

    Inner Circle’s involvement from the early stages of the design process allowed for a holistic understanding of the client objectives, requirements, and the challenges presented by the historic and important nature of the site.


    The Masterplan and Phase 1 designers, JTP Architects, led a community charrette in March 2019, gathering vital information on the community’s vision and future development expectations. This information formed a critical part of the Strategic Outline Case created by Inner Circle and served as a guide for developing every component of Phase 1.

    The Strategic Business Case created clarity and a clear steer for all the project phases, ensuring alignment with the community expectations and the Council strategic objectives.


    The project continues toward completion, as ERDF (European Regional Development Fund) and the Planning application have been approved. The ERDF application was especially challenging, as it required accessibility and sustainability standards above British planning regulation. The project will be delivered with a design and build contract; therefore, the Inner Circle commission was completed after the submission of the planning application.

    Liskeard Cattle Market charrette Inner Circle Consulting
    Liskeard Cattle Market charrette plan. © JTP architects.
    Inner Circle Consulting Liskeard Cattle Market
    Liskeard Cattle Market charrette plan aerial view. © JTP architects.

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