NEWS FROM THE CELTIC LEAGUE
Following on from a highly successful ‘round table’ meeting held in Redruth, Kernow during Thursday 20 November, 2014 bringing together Alex Page, English Heritage Historic Properties Director West, Dr Jeremy Ashbee, English Heritage Head Historic Properties Curator, Sophie White, English Heritage Territory Marketing Manager, Cllr Mike Chappell, Convener of the Cornwall Branch of the Celtic League who chaired the meeting, Craig Weatherhill, member of Save Penwith Moors, Bard of Gorseth Kernow, Cornish place names consultant, archaeologist, historian and author, Dr Merv Davey, Deputy Grand Bard of Gorseth Kernow, historian and author, Cheryl Straffon, Chair of Cornish Ancient Sites Protection Network and author, Matt Blewett, Secretary of the Cornish Branch Celtic League, archaeologist and historian and Tony Leamon, Assistant General Secretary of the Celtic League and treasurer of the Cornwall Branch, a follow up letter has been received back from Alex Page.
The letter was sent to Cllr. Mike Chappell, Convener of the Kernow Branch Celtic League who chaired the meeting and is as follows:
“Thank you once again for meeting with us last week. It was a very useful and constructive meeting and we look forward to reconvening next year. We will be discussing your comments and feedback with colleagues over the next few weeks.
It’s worth noting that most of our local and national marketing has very long lead times and all of this winter and most of next year’s material is either already printed or signed-off (our Christmas adverts and our members handbook for instance). I’m sure you’ll appreciate this but I think it’s worthy of note.
I will be in touch as soon as possible in the New Year to discuss future marketing and next year’s meeting.
Historic Properties Director West
27 Nov 2014”
The meeting addressed in detail the many issues and concerns raised particularly in respect of Cornwall ’s pre England and pre English history.
It was acknowledged that there had been misunderstandings down the years and delegates informed that some of English Heritage’s marketing and signage had caused sufficient offence to provoke some Cornish people into taking direct action of varying sorts.
Moving on, the meeting considered a more Cornish interpretation of history to take account of Cornwall ’s uniqueness in this respect as well as cultural differences.
Of particular note was the amount of resources and talent already in Cornwall which it was agreed would add greatly to English Heritage’s events agenda
It was determined that regular contact be maintained in order to take account of Cornish views and sensibilities with the same or very similar group meeting on an annual basis possibly in advance of the coming year’s events and activities at sites administered by English Heritage to discuss matters related to Cornwall.
Meanwhile, a resource document is to be prepared and submitted to English Heritage to assist them with staging events and marketing in the Duchy.
The Kernow Branch Celtic League is now set to engage with the Rt. Hon. Sajid Javid MP, Secretary of State at the Department for Culture, Media and Sport to discuss strategic arrangements regarding the future handling of Cornwall ’s pre English heritage.
Kernow Branch Convener, Cllr. Mike Chappell said:
‘We are extremely grateful to Alex Page and his team from English Heritage and feel cautiously optimistic regarding a more Cornish interpretation of English Heritage administered Cornish sites in the Duchy. The fact that we now have a firm arrangement in place for future consultation and indeed, the prospect of an annual meeting is another positive step forward. We are now set to open up communication with the Secretary of State over strategic issues concerning this matter, currently the Rt. Hon. Sajid Javid MP. I would also like to thank sincerely our partners at Save Penwith Moors, the Cornish Ancient Sites Protection Network and Gorseth Kernow in joining us in a true spirit of ‘one and all’. We intend to approach a very few others in respect of future consultations but, as unanimously agreed at our recent meeting by all those present, a small number of delegates is an extremely efficient way of attending to the business in hand. The Kernow Branch and our partners represent thousands of people and having facilitated this gathering, we are well able to Chair future meetings.’
28 November, 2014
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