THE MAN who was appointed less than a year ago to oversee the spending of a £600,000 cash injection to St Austell has quit.
Myles Ward, who was appointed as manager of the Business Improvement District (BID), cited various reasons for his decision.
He took up the paid role back in April last year but will leave at the end of January.
Mr Ward, from Truro, has had a 40-year career in retailing including working for WH Smith, Woolworth's, and most recently managed operations and marketing for Tesco in central Europe before he took retirement in 2011.
He told the Cornish Guardian: "This decision did not come lightly or quickly.
"I still believe St Austell can lift itself up and has huge potential."
Rumours have suggested a reason for his departure was over the controversial Coyte Farm development.
"My personal view is the most damaging element is there not being a decision [on Coyte Farm].
"No one can carry on and set their stall straight until a decision has been made."
Chris Witt, BID chairman, said it was with regret they had received Mr Ward's resignation.
He said: "Since Myles has been in the role, he has dedicated himself to delivering a meaningful improvement plan for our town and to optimise the investment for the BID levy payers. Good relationships with local suppliers have been developed and during December we saw the improved Christmas lighting display and a full programme of events, all marketed successfully throughout the area.
"He personally now has a number of projects that he will be focusing on, as well as spending more time with his family. We wish him well in his future plans."
A Business Improvement District (BID) was voted in by the businesses of the town last January.
Businesses pay a levy on top of their business rates to spend on projects that they have indicated as priorities to attract more custom.