• June 19, 2015


Insensitive developments in our countries come in for criticism often from the Celtic League but the article below (prepared by AGS Michael Chappell) indicates things are getting out of hand in Cornwall.

The issue also vindicates our earlier criticism of planners in Cornwall.

“A bivallate Iron Age fort, Castle Canyke is Cornwall’s largest such fort and standing close to the ancient Camel-Fowey trans-peninsular routeway, this site is also a prime candidate to have been the “Celli Wig” named in the Mabinogion as Arthur’s home fortress (the place-name Callywith survives close by). It is also the place where Cornish forces mustered under the command of Sir Humphrey Arundell for the start of the Anglo-Cornish War of June-August 1549, and the place from where the first Articles of Demand were sent by Arundell to London.

Last week the Council’s Strategic Planning Committee voted by 17 votes to 2 to give Hawkstone Ltd of Surrey permission to build 750 houses at Bodmin together with a hotel, pub, shops, community building, allotments and public open space almost immediately adjacent to the historic site. Indeed, the original plan was to have built over part of the scheduled monument area.

This was despite only one in four of the houses being ‘affordable’ and even calls for rejection from ‘English’ Heritage!

Commenting on this latest desecration of Cornwall’s ancient landscape, Craig Weatherhill, himself an archaeologist, historian and former planner and member of the Kernow Branch Celtic League said, ‘Not even our heritage is safe from Cornwall Council’s planners and their external developer masters. On 1st June 2015, Andrew Kerr, the outgoing Chief Executive Officer of Cornwall Council (soon to be Chief Executive of Edinburgh City Council) remarked, “We live in a developer-led world…we do not have control over our own developments”. The place has THAT much history….and this is how Cornwall Council wants to treat it!’

Accordingly, Chris Webber, an officer of the Branch Committee of the Kernow Branch Celtic League has written to Cornwall Council’s Archeological Unit seeking assurances and clarification. The text of the letter which has been copied in to the Leader of Cornwall Council, the MP for the area and the Cornwall Councillor for the area is as follows:

‘ Cornwall Archaeological Unit
Fal Building ,
Truro TR1 3AY

17 June, 2015

Dear Sirs and Mesdames

Castle Canyke, Bodmin

I write as a result of concerns expressed by our members right across Cornwall and many others about uncontrolled housing development and in this latest case, development in the vicinity of Castle Canyke, Bodmin.

Noting the words of Andrew Kerr, Chief Executive Officer, Cornwall Council, made on 1st June 2015.”We live in a developer-led world….we do not have control over our own developments” we seek your assurance that the integrity of Castle Canyke is assured. Damage to this very historic site caused by the unsustainable and unserviceable residential development we are now witness to in Cornwall, would be nothing short of criminal.

This communication is being copied to the Leader of Cornwall Council, to the the MP for the Bodmin area, Mr Scott Mann and to the Cornwall Councillor, Cllr Steve Rogerson such is our concern.

Yours etc’



Link to newspaper report.

J B Moffatt (Mr)
Director of Information
Celtic League


(Please note that replies to correspondence received by the League and posted on CL News are usually scanned hard copies. Obviously every effort is made to ensure the scanning process is accurate but sometimes errors do occur.)


The Celtic League has branches in the six Celtic Countries. It works to promote cooperation between these countries and campaigns on a broad range of political, cultural and environmental matters. It highlights human rights abuse, monitors all military activity and focuses on socio-economic issues

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