Institute of Cornish Studies
Newsletter, April 2014
Celebrating St Piran’s Day on the Penryn Campus
On Wednesday 5th
March the Institute of Cornish Studies held a special event in the Exchange
Building to mark St Piran’s Day. It was decided that this would be an appropriate day to
acknowledge the work of undergraduate students who are making a significant contribution to the
work of Cornish Studies. The Richard Angove Bursary was officially launched last year in association
with Cornish Quest. This is an annual award of £150 each to three outstanding undergraduate
students doing courses associated with the Institute of Cornish Studies. The three winners for 2013-
14 were officially awarded their certificates by Angela Angove, the chairman of Cornish Quest.
‘Cornish Quest was absolutely delighted at the high standard of the papers from the three
student winners of the Cornish Quest Richard Angove Bursary. It was obvious to us all that
Thomas Fidler, Miles Fowler and Will Orchard had researched very well and we are very proud
of them all. We wish them well in their studies and endeavours in the future.’
Miles, Tom and Will receiving their awards from Angela Angove
In addition, the workshop saw the launch of the Institute’s pilot
education project for schools in conjunction with Cornwall
Heritage Trust. There was also Cornish music provided by
Lamorna Spry and Andy Kelly (pictured right). The afternoon
event was part of a wider Cornish Day in the Exchange hosted by
Academic & Student Services at the Penryn Campus with stalls
and taster sessions by the Archives and Cornish Studies Service,
Cornish Foodbox Company, Institute of Cornish Studies, MAGA
(Cornish Language Partnership), Multi-Faith Chaplaincy and the
FXU High Tea Society.
A Very Special Suitcase!
They may look battered and tired but three
very special old suitcases will soon be travelling
around schools and communities in Cornwall.
Schools are being invited to join an exciting
local landmark pilot project in conjunction with
the Institute of Cornish Studies and Cornwall
Heritage Trust. The suitcases will carry valuable
resources to enable schools and local
communities to explore and learn about the
marvellous historic landmarks right on their
The project was officially launched at the Penryn Campus on St. Piran’s Day 2014 and will initially
run for 3 months. The project, ‘Landmark Travels – our past in a suitcase’, involves a specialist
team that will inspire children and teachers through workshops centred on Cornish landmarks such
as Dupath Well, Carn Euny and Treffry Viaduct. Children involved will get the chance to visit these
local landmarks and, with the help of the mystery contents of the suitcase, will respond creatively
using a range of techniques. These will include storytelling, sculpture, painting, digital media,
collage and poetry. At the end of each workshop, children’s responses will be folded, posted and
attached to the inside of the old suitcases, which will then travel to the next school to inspire more
young people to carry on this important work. Sarah Chapman, one of the project team says, “From
past experience, we have learnt that storytelling and creativity provide positive ways to engage
children with their heritage in a meaningful, responsive and fun way. This project will expand on
this and takes us out into the landscape to explore some of the fascinating historic landmarks on
This project offers a different and innovative
approach to engage people of all ages with
their local heritage, spreading knowledge
about Cornwall’s exciting past.
If you think your school could benefit from
joining this exciting project, please contact
Sarah Chapman on 07767382552 or email
Poets’ Corner: As Waves Fall
In this section Jenna White, a work experience student with Cornish Story, talks about her poem,
As Waves Fall, which is published on p. 3:
‘My name is Jenna, and along with my family, I live in Cornwall. I have lived here all my life. I was
born here, so I love everything about the county. The poem was mainly to portray how much I like
living here, but it also spoke about the coastline and St Michaels Mount, a historic Cornish
landmark off the coast at Penzance. Throughout the poem, I think that I wanted to describe the
ocean because it has played such a big part in my life and I think that it’s important I talked about
it. My experience with poetry originally came from my granddad. He has always been a big
inspiration to me through poetry and has done a lot of work himself. He was the one that
encouraged me to start writing poems and I am very grateful’.
As waves fall
By Jenna White
The wind of the coastline batters on
To engulf the sailors crossing over the torn down sea
Far out in front over ripples and rock
Lies the Mount of St Michael, rising into the fresh new breeze
The kelp of the forest floors, fly like flags
Withering corners touch the belly of waves
That writhe and shiver up to granite walls
Then drop, and form craters that pile up with froth
The dredgers clear paths by cold metal beams
As fish fly, only to be drowned in air, quenched in mist
Their scales flash colours of salvation in the light
They leap and see St Michaels Mount loom quietly into view
The shingle, broken by battered waves, roars up and hurls down
As the bitter sharp edges chatter in laughter
The sun flashes bright in the near dark sky
And the Mount of St Michael fades into black
Roseanne Ley – Marketing and Advertising Officer
“After five years living away from Cornwall, I’m delighted to be
back studying at Falmouth, and working for CAVA.
So far, I’ve worked with Garry Tregidga to help develop and
promote some of the Institute’s projects and events, and I look
forward to creating some more in the future. My role is to get
more people interested in using CAVA through Cornish Story.
It’s such a great resource for people wanting to learn more
about Cornish History. When I’m not at university, I love being
outdoors whether walking my dogs, running, swimming, or
attempting to surf! I’ve recently taken up Thai boxing too.”
Jane Channon - Cornish Research Group Coordinator
Jane has worked for the last three years as an Administrator
for Exeter University’s Law department in Cornwall.
Before this she spent ten years in London working for the BBC
as a Picture Editor on children's magazines and ended up
helping to archive the Radio Times picture collection.
She currently works part-time for Falmouth University as a
Widening Participation Assistant, helping to support students
of all ages access Higher Education in Cornwall.
New administrative roles in ICS
The Institute of Cornish Studies relies on the work of its volunteers. We’d like you to meet some of
the administration team working behind the scenes.
Will be joining the ICS team on a voluntary basis. Jay was formerly the administrator of the History
Department at the Penryn Campus. She has been associated with the University of Exeter at the
Penryn Campus since 2004 when she became a member of Academic Services and was then
administrator of the History Department until her retirement in 2013. In her new role at the
Institute of Cornish Studies she will be initially focusing on providing administrative support for the
associate scheme. Jay is also assisting with the Cornish Story outreach programme and in May will
be helping three of our Public History students (Will Orchard, Abi Stocker and Katie Taylor) with a
travelling exhibition they have designed on the theme of 'Journey through Cornwall' when they will
be visiting Bodmin, Truro and Penzance libraries.
Jenna White – Work Experience student
Jenna is a GCSE student from Penryn College and she has been
working with the Cornish Story team at the Institute. Her work
involves the editing of previous articles that will be republished
in a new format later this year, conducting oral history
interviews for CAVA and writing an article based on her
recordings. Jenna is interested in poetry and this issue of the
newsletter includes an example of her work (see p.2). It has
been a pleasure to involve Jenna in the work of Cornish Story
and we wish her the very best for her future studies.
A celebration of Cornish and Breton culture taking place
around Falmouth on Easter Saturday 19th
The Parade starts at The Moor at 12.30pm and processes past
the shops to Custom House Quay. From 1pm to 6pm there will
be free performances of music, singing and dance at the three
pubs on the quayside.
An Organ and Bombard concert and string trio will perform at
King Charles Church a short stroll from Custom House Quay.
It too is free although donations will be welcome.
From 6pm to 7pm there will be free acoustic
performances in the Garden Room at
AberFest Noz takes place from 7pm. This is
a fantastic Cornish & Breton party night with
performances from eight Cornish and Breton
groups (by ticket only).
For more information please go to:
St Day’s journey from Brittany to Cornwall
Continuing the Breton theme, this year’s Lantern Parade in St Day on 8th
Cornwall’s shared heritage with Brittany, celebrating St Day’s journey across the sea from Brittany
to Cornwall. Local artists and children made a spectacular fluorescent art installation with shadow
puppetry with live musical accompaniment.
The parish is named after St Day who, whilst not well known in Britain, is often found honoured in
Brittany. The old pronunciation of 'St Dye' was in common use until fairly recently. The village
celebrates its significance as a pilgrimage centre in Cornwall, in honour of the Holy Trinity.
Images courtesy of A Cornish Eye
The Cornish Research Group Seminar Series
It was good to meet new volunteers and existing members at the second Cornish Research Group
Seminar on 29th
January. Marilyn Liddicoat gave a talk outlining her family’s involvement with local
government in Cornwall entitled: ‘A Cornish Political Family & Personal Political Influences and
Thoughts’, exploring the connection or disconnection between political activism and local
community endeavour and activism.
Marilyn described the direct involvement of several family members in local government, as county,
district and parish councillors over several generations dating back to the Middle Ages, when distant
ancestors had been Cornish MPs. She also outlined her own career in politics in Cornwall and
London, working for Cornish MP Sir Robert Hicks, for the political department of The Sunday Times
and for the Inter-Parliamentary Union.
The talk was recorded and will shortly be available in the ICS archives.
A new publication has recently been produced
comparing the experiences of Brittany and
Cornwall. Entitled Bretagne/Cornouailles
(britanniques): quelles relations? and edited
by Anne Goarzin and Jean-Yves Le Disez, it has
been published by the Centre de Recherché
Bretonne et Celtique (CRBC).
It brings together researchers from either side
of the Channel in an effort to find the links
that have historically united these regions and
to bridge a significant gap in research. Their
work, compiled here in the first volume
entirely dedicated to the subject, will
hopefully throw light on this new and
promising field of study. Contributions explore
such topics as migrations, artists in the
nineteenth century, the Celtic Revival,
contemporary identity and film
representations. It is intended as the start of a
long-term collaboration between the Institute
of Cornish Studies and Celtic researchers in the
universities of Rennes and Western Brittany.
Copies can be ordered from the Institute of
Cornish Studies. For further details please
The Institute of Cornish Studies
University of Exeter
Tel: 01326 371888
Next Cornish Research Group Seminar: Friday 28th March
We look forward to the next seminar meeting on Friday 28th March. As well as catching up on the
group’s latest work and developments, new member Dr Mike Tripp will talk about his research on
Cornish wrestling and the reasons why he is interested in this subject.
Mike was Head of Department
of Sports Development and
Outdoor Learning at the
University College Plymouth St
Mark and St John until 2012,
where he taught the history,
politics and sociology of sport.
He obtained his doctorate
from the University of Exeter
in 2010 and his thesis was
entitled, The Persistence of
Difference: a History of Cornish
Mike has contributed articles on wrestling for The Oxford Companion to the Body, The New
Dictionary of National Biography, the Encyclopaedia of British Sport and the Encyclopaedia of
Traditional British Rural Sports. He also acted in January 2001 as an historical consultant for Inside
Out, the BBC Southwest current affairs magazine television programme, which examined the
current demise of Cornish wrestling. Mike will talk at the next ICS Research Seminar about his
research and the reasons why he is interested in Cornish wrestling.
All welcome to this free event at Penryn Campus, Peter Lanyon Building seminar 6 from 2-5pm
Wrestling in Padstow c. 1900, published
in The Padstow Echo no.6, 1965
To find out more about how to join the Cornish Research Group and become an associate member
of the Institute of Cornish Studies, please go to: www.exeter.ac.uk/cornishstudies
or email: firstname.lastname@example.org