New Customer Centre for Cornwall’s Oldest Charity

November 12, 2020 2:32 pm

Cornwall’s oldest charity, iSightCornwall, has revealed a new look welcome area at the Sight Centre following a refurbishment designed to be more accessible and easier to socially distance in.

Founded in 1856 with the help of William Baker, a blind man from St Austell, iSightCornwall has gone from strength to strength and now helps people affected by sight loss across the county.

The charity’s Sight Centre in Truro is the only dedicated resource centre for anyone in Cornwall who is affected by a visual impairment. However, apart from a few coats of paint over the years, the space has not changed very much at all since opening in 1994.

But with more and more visitors each year and social distancing now being an important consideration the charity realised that the reception area was no longer fit for purpose so they launched a funding appeal in March to help refurbish it.

Their Vision

Their vision was to make the reception area larger to accommodate more clients, install new energy-saving lighting, a new phone system and add a new area for demonstrating equipment and daily living aids.

Thanks to the generosity of the Mark Master Masons who donated £10,700 through the Mark Benevolent Fund and a £5,000 donation from the Screwfix Foundation, iSightCornwall was able to make this happen.


Carole Theobald, Chief Executive of iSightCornwall said: “We are thrilled to be able to turn our vision into a reality thanks to the support of the Mark Master Masons and the Screwfix Foundation. This will make a big difference in the way we deliver our services and make the experience more welcoming and accessible for our visually impaired clients.”

Right Worshipful Brother Kevin John Hicks, Mark Provincial Grand Master and trustee of the MBF, added: “I am absolutely thrilled to have been invited to iSightCornwall to present such a magnificent sum of money, particularly on behalf of the Mark Benevolent Fund and the Cornish Mark Brethren, to such a highly respected and local deserving charity based in Truro.

“Having recently been appointed as a trustee of the Mark Benevolent Fund, I know only too well the importance of these vital funds can make towards local charities, particularly in working to support our local communities across Cornwall. Also being the oldest charity here in Cornwall clearly shows how vital and highly regarded iSightCornwall is by the Cornish public.”

The new customer centre was officially opened on 30 October 2020 by Cherilyn Mackrory MP alongside Kevin Hicks and Phillip Lakin from the Boscawen Mark Lodge.

Phillip, a long-time supporter of iSightCornwall said: “I am absolutely delighted this money has gone to such a worthy cause. iSightCornwall do so much for people and I know how much this money means to them. To see the new welcome area and the thought which has clearly gone into the design, you can really see how they put their clients first.”

Appointment only

The Sight Centre is currently open for appointments only but staff are available for help or enquiries by calling 01872 261110. Our phones are manned Tuesday to Friday from 9.30am until 4pm and we will be picking up any messages left out of hours.

The online store will also still be available, offering Christmas cards, gifts and every day aids to help you or your loved one during lockdown. Alternatively, you can give us a call and purchase items on card over the phone.

A donation, however small, can change someone's life. Thank you for your support.

Call us 01872 261110