20.8.19 St Just in Penwith prepares to host the 2019 Esedhvos Festival of Cornish Culture

Penzance Youth String Orchestra

The hard working local organising committee is busy working with bards of Gorsedh Kernow putting the finishing touches to this year’s Gorsedh Kernow Esedhvos Festival of Cornish Culture, being held in the historic town of St Just in Penwith which lies at the heart of the magnificent Tin Coast mining country.

The Esedhvos Festival starts on Thursday 5th September and the programme includes a LitFest featuring ‘Meet the Authors’ from Gorsedh Kernow’s Holyer an Gof Awards scheme.  Audience members will have a chance to listen to live interviews with prize winning authors and contributors including Katherine Stansfield and Dick Cole. Gorsedh Kernow will also launch several new books at this event including ‘Cornish Bards of St Just’.

That same day locals and visitors will have a chance to view the newly opened exhibition of Adults and Young People’s Awards winner’s work which will be on display alongside the historic Grand Bard’s Chair in the St Just Miners’ Chapel, and during the evening the Gorsedh Kernow Awards presentation evening, compered by bard Bert Biscoe, will be held in St Just Old Town Hall when winners will receive their Awen medals and certificates from the Grand Bard.

The one day Conference on Friday 6th September will be looking to Cornwall’s future, exploring the subject of ‘Global Kernow Today’.

“Cornwall must look to the future and continue to embrace new technology if we are not to be left behind,” said Grand Bard Elizabeth Carne, Melennek “and this year’s conference will once again highlight our distinctive culture and focus on partnerships and links that Cornwall has with cultural, economic and social communities across the world.”

Also in this year’s packed schedule is the traditional Troyl/Ceilidh led by Helen Musser and the Penzance Guizers and the much loved gala concert on the Saturday evening with local performers and entertainers including the Cape Cornwall Singers and Penzance Youth String Orchestra. Later on the Saturday evening there will be a “Come All Ye” Cornish music and song session at the Commercial Hotel in the centre of town, hosted by Matt Blewett.

On the Sunday there is a chance to try your hand at Cornish in the “Blas a Gernewek” taste of Cornish session being held in The Knut, followed by a heritage walk around the town with Doug Luxford or a coastal walk with Ted Mole and finally Evensong in the Cornish language at St Just Parish Church.

The centrepiece of the Esedhvos Festival of Cornish Culture will be the 2pm blue-robed bardic ceremony at the historic Plen an Gwari on Saturday 7th September where 11 of the 12 new bards will be initiated in recognition of their outstanding work in serving Cornwall and her distinctive Celtic identity. Entry is free and there will be plenty of space for the public to come and watch.  Stalls with Cornish themed goods will be open from late morning along Cape Cornwall Street and refreshments will be available all day.

Acknowledging the enormous amount of local help received, the Grand Bard praised the efforts of all the volunteers on the local organising committee.

“We are very grateful for all the help we have received,” said Elizabeth Carne, “everyone is so busy these days but members of the local community understand Cornwall’s unique and distinctive culture and the importance of keeping it going.”

END OF PRESS RELEASE  ********************

Further notes and Esedhvos Festival programme “at a glance”

Gorsedh Kernow exists to promote and 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. 

For full information about the Gorsedh Kernow Esedhvos Festival of Cornish Culture please visit the website  www.gorsedhkernow.org.uk

For more general information about Gorsedh Kernow please contact enquiries@gorsedhkernow.org.uk

Links to other press releases:

12.8.19 Gorsedh Kernow names 12 new Bards for 2019 https://gorsedhkernow.org.uk/wp/?p=785

31.7.19 Gorsedh Kernow congratulates successful Cornish language candidates https://gorsedhkernow.org.uk/wp/?p=781

18.7.19 Gorsedh Kernow Adults Awards 2019 announced https://gorsedhkernow.org.uk/wp/?p=773

11.7.19 Holyer an Gof 2019 Publishers’ Awards winners announced https://gorsedhkernow.org.uk/wp/?p=767

1.7.19 Gorsedh Kernow Young People’s Awards 2019 announced https://gorsedhkernow.org.uk/wp/?p=763

Esedhvos Festival of Cornish Culture, St Just in Penwith

Thursday 5th – Sunday 8th September 2019

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

Thursday 5th September

11am – 3.00pm  Literary Festival, with Holyer an Gof “meet the authors” including Katherine Stansfield, Dick Cole, Lesley Trotter and Sue-Ellery Hill, plus book launches and book fair @ St Just Old Town Hall. Refreshments available. Free entry.

10am – 4pm (and 9 – 10pm after Awards presentation)

Exhibition of Gorsedh Kernow Adults and Young People’s Award winning entries plus the Grand Bard’s Chair @ The St Just Miners’ Chapel. The Grand Bard’s Chair was designed, made and donated in 1982 by bard Leslie Hever Libby, Pengover, of St Ive near Liskeard. The Chair incorporates all the legends, past history, activities and festivals that are so much a part of Cornwall. Free entry.

6.30 for 7.00pm  Presentation to winners of Adults and Young People’s Awards  by Elizabeth Carne, Melennek, Grand Bard of Cornwall @ St Just Old Town Hall. With guest appearances by Richard Trethewey,  Ellie & Matt (Bodmin College), Rieve Atkinson, Des Hannigan and Hanterhir. Evening hosted by Bert Biscoe, Viajor Gans Geryow. Invitation only.

Friday 6th September

9.30am for 10am – 4.00pm  Conference ‘Global Kernow Today’ @ St Just Old Town Hall. With speakers Peter Herring, Laura Paillat, Jamie Toms and Gareth Parry. All welcome. Tickets £5 conference only + £5 for pasty lunch from https://gorsedhkernow.org.uk/events.html   

10am – 4pm

Exhibition of Gorsedh Kernow Adults and Young People’s Award winning entries plus the Grand Bard’s Chair @ The St Just Miners’ Chapel.

7.30pm  Cornish Troyl/Ceilidh with Helen Musser and Penzance Guizers @ St Just Old Town Hall. Bar. Free entry, retiring collection.

Saturday 7th September

11am  Cornish stalls open @ Cape Cornwall Street.

10am – 12 noon

Exhibition of Gorsedh Kernow Adults and Young People’s Award winning entries plus the Grand Bard’s Chair @ The St Just Miners’ Chapel. Free entry.

1.30pm  Procession of bards from Cape Cornwall School to the Plen an Gwari.

2.00pm  Gorsedh Kernow bardic ceremony, led by Grand Bard Elizabeth Carne, Melennek and Emily Earley as Lady of Cornwall @ The Plen an Gwari. Ceremony @ Cape Cornwall School if wet. All welcome. Free entry.

7.00pm  Gala Concert  @ St Just Miners’ Chapel with the Cape Cornwall Singers, Penzance Youth String Orchestra, Keur Heb Hanow and John & Anna Dowling. Compered by Bert Biscoe, Viajor Gans Geryow. Tickets £6 on the door. All welcome.

9pm  ‘Come All Ye’ Cornish music and song session @ The Commercial Hotel, St Just, TR19 7HE. Hosted by Matt Blewett. All welcome. Free entry.

Sunday 8th September

10am – 11.00am  ‘Blas a Gernewek – A Taste of Cornish’ session @ The Knut (behind the Plen an Gwari). Free entry. Can extend to 12 noon if participants wish.

11.00am  Heritage Walk around St Just with Doug Luxford, President of St Just and Pendeen Old Cornwall Society. Meet at The Knut.  Free. OR

11am  Coastal walk from Kenidjack to Botallack with optional pre-booked lunch at the Queens Arms. Walk free, lunch at cost. Contact Ted Mole email: ted@sarahduck.co.uk

3.00pm  Evensong in Cornish @ St Just Parish Church, TR19 7EZ. Collection for church funds. All welcome.

Gorsedh  Kernow Esedhvos  Festival  of Cornish Culture is supported by St Just Town Council, RRL Chartered Accountants and many local organisations and volunteers.

Meur ras! / Many thanks!