Tuesday 27 March 2018

Heroes of Hayle: WW1 stories from home and the Western Front

We're delighted to have just received a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund to take work forward in Hayle, Cornwall.

Heroes of Hayle: World War One stories from home and the Western Front will look at various aspects of life in the town during 1914-18. Acclaimed local author Jenny Alexander will be leading three full-day poetry workshops in September and October - to create work that can be read at Remembrance Day services in November.

Before that, we'll be running a series of talks and visits during the spring and summer.

On the agenda:

- a visit to the ruins of the National Explosives Factory on Hayle Towans

- a talk by local historian Chris Berry on the war graves in Phillack Church

- a talk by WW1 expert Ken Johns on the 251st Tunnelling Company formed in Hayle.

Please do get in touch if you would like to learn more. Anyone is very welcome to take part in all - or just one part - of this project. You don't have to be an experienced poet at all. Beginners are very welcome - and you will be surprised at what you will write under Jenny Alexander's expert guidance.

Monday 26 March 2018

Flower pickers at work....

It's been a cold and wet winter and I don't envy the flower pickers in west Cornwall at all. Dozens of working, mainly from overseas, have been out in the fields for weeks in this weather.
It's struck me that - ten years on from the start of I Packed This Myself, our Bridging Arts project working with migrant workers - we still don't really know very much about their lives. 
They live in a parallel universe  - perhaps out of choice, but we don't really know.
Perhaps we should update all the resources that we produced for I Packed This Myself. The blog that we kept at the time makes interesting reading - click here for a link.

Brilliant fundraiser for Camborne Youth Band

A fantastic auction last Saturday night at the St Michael's Mount Inn, Barriper, Cornwall, in aid of Camborne Youth Band. Ralph and Tina Williams, whose son Corey is in the band, assembled a real treasure trove of items to bid for - and raised £1,200, a really great result.
It was such a fun evening for everyone, and put the Youth Band firmly on course to raise funds to travel to the Menin Gate, Belgium, this August Bank Holiday.
Click here for more about that.

Thursday 22 March 2018


Corey Williams playing his great great grandfather's bugle brought back from WW1
Power tools, jewellery, kitchen items, restaurant vouchers, fishing/yacht trip, family days out …. Just a few of the fantastic items to bid for this Saturday 24 March at an auction in Barripper, Cornwall, in aid of Camborne Youth Band.

The auction is being organised by Tina Williams, who is leading a fundraising drive to take the Youth Band to the Menin Gate, Belgium, where tens of thousands of fallen soldiers are honoured by a daily ceremony. The Band has been invited to play on August Bank Holiday weekend, a huge honour. Bridging Arts is working with the Band to make the trip happen.

Tina’s son, Corey, is in the Youth Band – and is the great great grandson of Fred Negus, a Cornish miner who went out to the Western Front in 1914 with other men from Dolcoath Mine. The Williams family still has Fred’s bugle and Corey will play it in France during the visit.

“This really is history coming alive,” says Tina. “We need to get the Band out there and raise as much money as we possibly can to make sure that everyone can afford to go.”

If you can't make the auction, you can check out items online by clicking this link. The auction will be at St Michael’s Mount Inn, Barripper on Saturday 24 March, starting at 7pm with playing by the Band. All are welcome. Pasties will be on sale and everyone will have the chance to join in a singalong.

Tina has a fundraising page (https://www.gofundme.com/menin-gate-fundraiser-cyb-jcb) for anyone who can’t make it but wants to make a donation.

For more information, call Ralph Williams on 07737 210871 or email tridds@gmail.com

Saturday 17 March 2018

Freezing conditions but Camborne Youth Band play on

It was (literally) freezing today at Camborne Rugby ground - snow started to fall half way through the match against Ding Crusaders. But Camborne Youth Band played before and during the match - raising money for their August trip to the Menin Gate. There was a collection at half time....
It's a great honour for them to be invited - and a well deserved accolade, as even this short clip shows... And what commitment to play in these conditions when clearly their fingers were so, so cold.....
The icing on the cake - Camborne won the rugby! Go Camborne!

Friday 9 March 2018

A surprise request for BBC Radio Cornwall's Laurence Reed ....

BBC Radio Cornwall's Laurence Reed had a surprise request yesterday from Ralph Williams of Barriper, father of Corey who plays in Camborne Youth Band.
Camborne Youth Band has been invited to play at the Last Post ceremony at the Menin Gate in Belgium on August Bank Holiday weekend - and Ralph is hard at work fundraising to get the players there. The target is £8,000 and the Band is holding an auction on 24 March at Barriper near Camborne to raise funds.

Listen to the end to hear how - just at the sign off - Laurence is stopped in his tracks ....

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