About Us

About Us

With, on average, 90 staff and a turnover of approximately £2M a year, we support a number of projects such as, community development; fishing and coastal communities; infrastructure services, training provision, informal and unpaid carers, volunteer led projects and support for young people.

CRCC is part of a network of 38 RCCs across England, all sharing the aim of enhancing rural communities. RCCs are represented at a national level by ACRE (Action with Communities in Rural England).

CRCC has offices in central Truro and Penzance.

The Charity delivers varied projects, which are greatly valued by those supported and helps the organisation to meet its charitable mission of building ‘vibrant, sustainable, inclusive communities’.

Katherine Nissen – CEO

I joined CRCC in June 2019 after a career in education, social care and the voluntary sector. I am proud to have been born and bred in Cornwall and I have lived in rural communities for most of my life. I am now based in West Cornwall and like to make the most of the best things about Cornwall – especially the coastline!

I am really excited to be working for CRCC in the role of CEO, as I am able to work with a passionate and dedicated team of people who make a difference everyday to the lives of people in our communities. Since being in post, I have seen the impact of CRCC projects and I am delighted to have the opportunity to play a role in helping the charity to grow and meet the needs of people in Cornwall both now and into the future.

Our Trustees

CRCC is overseen by a board of nine trustees, to which Alan Shepherd became Chair in December 2019.

The board has representation with a wide range of interests and skills from across the county. Trustees are involved at different levels and have general involvement with all staff, which helps their understanding of work and enables them to provide appropriate support when needed.

Colonel Edward Bolitho was appointed as Lord Lieutenant of Cornwall in September 2011 and we are delighted that he became our Patron.

Our History

We’ve been supporting Cornish Communities since the end of the second World War. We understand the social value and health benefits of bringing people together to work, play and make new friends.

We’re part of a network of rural community charities founded by prominent suffragette Grace Hadow in 1920. Grace, who also helped create the Women’s Institute, understood the problems facing rural areas, especially in the war years. She recognised the well-being effect of strong communities and the role that something as simple as a village hall could play in improving people’s lives.

The first RCC was in Oxford with Cornwall covered, initially, from an office in Bristol. In the pre-motorway era there were only occasional visits to the county from one, lone, officer driving down to what was then a remote and unspoiled corner of the British Isles.

Cornwall finally got it’s own Rural Communities Charity in 1946. Led by the Rev. John Pearce, most of its work was in providing support for parish councils, playing fields and village halls. It also provided marriage guidance counselling and welfare advice for the young and elderly.

As the organisation grew, its remit broadened into other areas of community life. Today CRCC is a large, modern charitable company delivering a wide range of services and support to Cornish people, community groups and the thriving network of more than 400 village halls and community centres that we helped to create.

Our work also involves caring, training, offering guidance and teaching life skills for those who need a bit of extra help to keep their lives on track. And the range of services we provide continues to evolve as needs and circumstances change across Cornwall.