4.9.16 Keep Kernow Whole says the Grand Bard of Cornwall

Grand Bard Merv Davey, Telynor an Weryn, receives the "Fruits of the Earth" from Lady of Cornwall Bethany Lyne of St Keverne.
Grand Bard Merv Davey, Telynor an Weryn, receives the “Fruits of the Earth” from Lady of Cornwall Bethany Lyne of St Keverne.

“This is the parish that holds the spirit of Cornwall” said Grand Bard Merv Davey, Telynor an Weryn, in his address to fellow bards, visiting dignitaries and members of the public at Gorsedh Kernow’s annual bardic ceremony, held this year in a rain soaked St Keverne.

“It was from this parish some 500 years ago that Michael Joseph the Smith led the Cornish host to London in protest at the destruction of our way of life. Throughout the centuries the people of Cornwall have asserted their distinct identity and heritage.”

Thanking members of the local organising committee for all their hard work over many months and the Chairman of St Keverne Parish Council David Lambrick for such a warm welcome, Mr Davey stood alongside delegates from the Welsh and Breton Gorseddau and reminded the crowds who had managed to squeeze into St Keverne church of the importance of retaining the border between Cornwall and the rest of Britain.

“The spirit of Michael Joseph and St Keverne are seen in our success with the recognition of the Cornish Language, our National Minority Status and the Devolution Deal for Cornwall Council” said the Grand Bard, “but the time has come now to campaign to keep our land whole.”

Dancers in procession through St Keverne Church during the bardic ceremony.
Dancers in procession through St Keverne Church during the bardic ceremony.

Urging his audience to recognise Cornwall as a place apart with its own political history and cultural heritage the Grand Bard  insisted that to place parts of Cornwall into Devon for the purpose of Parliamentary Constituencies would be a serious denial of history.  He feared for the success of any Devolution Deal and called on Cornwall’s MPs to support Gorsedh Kernow’s call to ‘Keep Cornwall Whole.’

“Any recommendation that parts of Cornwall are placed within Devon constituencies would be a disaster for Cornish democracy, heritage, culture and our national identity.”

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Further notes for Editors

Gorsedh Kernow exists to maintain the national Celtic Spirit of Cornwall and to give expression to such spirit, to encourage the study of Cornish history and literature, the Cornish language, to foster Cornish art, music, dance and sport and to link with other Celtic countries.

Gorsedh Kernow was established in 1928 with the aim of celebrating and promoting Cornwall’s distinctive Celtic culture and the village of St Keverne, home to Cornwall’s celebrated statue of Cornish martyrs, St Keverne blacksmith Michael an Gof and Bodmin lawyer Thomas Flamank, provided the setting for this year’s Gorsedh Kernow Esedhvos Festival.

The annual procession of bards and installation of the 19 new initiates took place on Saturday 3rd September at the ceremony in St Keverne Church (torrential rain forced a change of venue) as part of the Esedhvos Festival. The procession was led by Grand Bard of Cornwall Merv Davey, Telynor an Weryn, accompanied by the Chairman of St Keverne Parish Council David Lambrick and local St Keverne girl Bethany Lyne as the “Lady of Cornwall.”

For further information about the Gorsedh Kernow Esedhvos Festival including the Bardic Ceremony please contact Delia Brotherton, Myrghwyn Melynor, Communications Officer, Gorsedh Kernow,  email communications@gorsedhkernow.org.uk