Esedhvos Festival

The 2017 Esedhvos Festival of Cornish Culture will be held in Launceston and will run from Wednesday 30th August until Sunday 3rd September. Here is the full programme:

Gorsedh Kernow Esedhvos Festival of Cornish Culture 2017, Launceston

Members of the public are very welcome to attend these events, all which are free unless otherwise stated.

Wednesday 30th August until Friday 1st September

Grand Bard’s chair on display @ St Mary Magdalene Church, Church Street, Launceston, PL15 8AU.  Built before the Reformation in 1511 by Henry Trecarrell, its intricately carved granite exterior makes it one of the finest churches in Britain. It is open daily 10am - 4pm for visitors. Entry to the church free, but donations are welcome.

Thursday 31st August

11am – 3.00pm  Book Festival, Holyer an Gof “meet the authors” including Judy Scrimshaw, David Thorn, Rod Lyon and Bernard Deacon, plus book launches @ Launceston Town Hall, Western Road, Launceston PL15 7AR. Refreshments available, accessible for people with disabilities.  Free entry. More details.

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Stuart and David Thorn

2.00pm onwards  Display of Gorsedh Kernow Young People’s Awards and Adults Awards & Competitions entries @ Launceston Town Hall, Otho Peter Suite.  Free entry.

7.00pm  Presentation to winners of Young People’s Awards and Adults Awards & Competitions by Merv Davey, Telynyor an Weryn, Grand Bard of Cornwall @ Launceston Town Hall. With guest appearance by Jim Causley. Evening hosted by Edward Rowe, Mab Tregarrek. Bar. Free entry.

Friday 1st September

9.30am – 4.30pm  Conference “Cornish Culture and Tourism – Friends or Foes?” @ Launceston Town Hall. With speakers Merv Davey, Malcolm Bell, Ben Gilby, Fiona Wotton, Kim Conchie and Merryn Davies-Deacon. Tickets £5 to include pasty lunch from Launceston TIC tel 01566 772321.  Advance booking essential. All welcome.

7.30pm  Cornish Troyl/Ceilidh with Carmen Hunt & the Scoot Lyskerrys Collective @ Launceston Town Hall. Bar. Free entry.

Saturday 2nd September

11am  Cornish stalls open @ Launceston Castle, PL15 7DR.

1.30pm  Procession of bards from Central Methodist Church, Launceston via Church Street and High Street through The Square to Launceston Castle.

2.00pm  Gorsedh Kernow bardic ceremony, led by Grand Bard Merv Davey, Telynyor an Weryn with Miss Sophie Hillman as Lady of Cornwall @ Launceston Castle. Procession of bards returns to Central Methodist Church via Castle North Gate and Castle Street. Ceremony @ St Mary Magdalene Church if wet. All welcome.

7.00pm  Gala Concert  @ Central Methodist Church, Castle Street, Launceston, PL15 8BA. With Jane Nancarrow reading poetry of Charles Causley, Rob Strike and students from Launceston College, Mike O’Connor & Barbara Griggs and Launceston Town Band. Compered by Bert Biscoe, Viajor Gans Geryow. The Central Methodist Church building is the third one to be built on this spot and the crowning stone on the spire was placed on 4th November 1870, when the opening ceremony took place. Tickets £5 from Launceston TIC tel 01566 772321. Advance booking advised.

 8.30pm  ‘Come All Ye’ Cornish music and song session @ The Bell Inn, Tower St, Launceston PL15 8BQ. Hosted by Rob Strike. All welcome. Free entry.

Sunday 3rd September

9.30 – 11.30am  ‘Blas a Gernewek – A Taste of Cornish’ session @ Launceston Town Hall. Refreshments available. Free entry.

11.00am  History Walk around Launceston with bard Rob Tremain, Cryor an Dre Lanstefan,starting @ Launceston Town Hall and finishing @ The Bell Inn. Free.

3.00pm  Choral Evensong in Cornish @ St Mary Magdalene Church, Launceston.  Collection for church funds. All welcome.

Gorsedh  Kernow Esedhvos  Festival  of Cornish Culture is supported by Launceston Town Council, Launceston Central Methodist Church, St Mary Magdalene Church, Launceston Castle, Robinson Reed Layton, the Bell Inn and many local organisations and volunteers. Meur ras! / Many thanks!


About the Gorsedh Kernow Festival of Cornish Culture:

Grand Bard Merv Davey

The  Festival promotes and celebrates Cornwall’s distinctive cultural identity and Celtic heritage.

The Cornish equivalent of the Welsh Eisteddfod and Breton Gorsedd, it is held in Cornwall every year in the days surrounding the annual Gorsedh Kernow bardic ceremony.

The range of events is wide, open to the public and mostly free of charge, taking place in locations close to the current Gorsedh ceremony site.

Festival events usually include a Book Fair, a one-day conference, a ceilidh, a concert, a bi-lingual Sunday Evensong and the opportunity to try out a bit of the Cornish language for yourself. Often there are talks, walks or demonstrations of local interest.

Yeth an Werin

On Gorsedh Saturday itself, the impressive ceremony is augmented by colourful stalls on the Gorsedh Field. Here you may browse among stalls offering Cornish crafts, foods and drink, you can find information on local organisations and societies and also learn about Cornwall’s native language, Kernewek.

The whole experience gives you the opportunity each year to visit one of Cornwall’s beautiful, historic but maybe lesser-known towns and to explore Cornwall’s heritage and culture in a friendly, happy atmosphere of celebration.

  • Do you have any queries or comments?

  • Would you like to take a stall on the Gorsedh Field or at the Book Fair in 2018?

Contact Pat Parkins, the Esedhvos Events Manager, either by email on or by leaving a text message or voicemail on our dedicated Esedhvos phoneline 077 621 69 733 and we will get back to you as soon as possible.




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Y fydh synsys Esedhvos Gorsedh Kernow yn Lannstevan dhyworth dy'Mergher 30ves a vis Est bys dhe dy'Sul 3a a vis Gwynngala. Rag an towlen gwrewgh gweles a-gleth mar pleg.

A-dro dhe Esedhvos Gorsedh Kernow:

An Esedhvos a’s teves bern a-dro dh’agan honanieth wonisogethel ha’gan ertach keltek. 

Haval dhe’n Esedhvos kembrek ha’n Gorsedd bretonek, ev a hwer pub bledhen y’n dedhyow  yn-kerghyn an Orsedh hy honan.

Gans meur a hwarvosow gonisogethel dihaval, an brassa rann anedha heb kost,  rag oll an werin yw an Esedhvos, mayth omlowenhahons yn tyller an Orsedh.

Herwydh usadow, yn Dedhyow an Esedhvos y kevir Fer Lyvrow, Jorna Keskussulyans, Troyll, Gool Ilow, Gwesper Diwyethek ha Myttin Lowender Kernewek.  Y hwyrvydh martesen ynwedh arethow, keskerdhow po diskwedhyansow a-dro dhe vateryow a’n ranndir.

Dy’Sadorn  an Orsedh, y fydh stallow afinys oll a-dro dhe Bark an Solempnita hag y hyllir gwandra ow mires orth kreftow, boos ha diwes kernewek, kavos kedhlow yn kever kowethasow teythyek, ha praktisya  agas Kernewek gans tus orth stall agan yeth!
Ottomma kedhlow rag an Esedhvos 2016 esa yn Lannahevren.

Der an prevyans ma pub bledhen, yth aswonir milwell trevow kernewek teg hag istorek hag omlowenhe yn prysweyth kernewek gwir.

  • Eus govynn po kampol dhywgh?

  • Eus hwans dhywgh kemeres stall po war Bark an Orsedh po orth an Fer Lyvrow 2018?

Gwrewgh kestava Pat Parkins, Dyghtyer Hwarvosow an Esedhvos:
po der ebost orth po ow kasa messach tekst poken lev  yn klappkodh an Esedhvos 077 621 69 733 ha ni a vynn gorthybi skaffa gyllyn.



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