Current Affairs



Cornish Constitutional Convention.

Following the successful launch and response of the Mebyon Kernow petition for a Cornish Assembly. The Convention has been formed with the support of three Cornish Lib/Dem MP's and the Conservation PPC for the Falmouth & Camborne Constituency. To carry forward the fight for a Cornish Assembly. We suffer constant reminders that a South west of England Assembly including Cornwall will not give Cornwall a sustainable economy or eleviate the poverty that Europe acknowledged in granting Objective one.

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Council of Europe Framework Convention

for the Protection of National Minorities

Cornwall is still striving for the ethnic Cornish to be recognised under the above Convention, ratified by Robin Cook on behalf of the UK Government in January 1998. This would make available funding for cultural and language education in Cornwall. As previously reported, the Whitehall Government refuses this recognition to the ethnic Cornish. It bases its case on the use of the Race Relations Act 1976, which mainly deals with minorities persecuted because of their color and traditions. They refuse to see the Cornish as anything other than English, whilst acknowledging the Scots, Irish and the Welsh as National Minorities "as they were previously independent Nations".

Despite many submissions from Cornish Organisations, they have dismissed all our arguments, relying on the fact that the Council for Racial Equality (a government quango) has refused to take up any case on behalf of the Cornish.

Fortunately, a right of appeal exists to the Council of Europe (not the same as the EU), a report has been prepared with grateful thanks to the assistance of Joseph Rowntree Reform Trust, and sent to the Council of Europe in Strasbourg.

This report has been submitted to the Council of Europe, and we are hoping to be able to report their findings later this month August 2000.

The report is available from -Burt Biscoe, 3 Lower Rosewin Row, Truro, Kernow. Tel (+44) 1872 242293.

You can help by writing to Mr.Antti Korkeakivi, Minorities Unit, Directorate of Human Rights, Council of Europe, F-7075Strasbourge Cedex, France. Supporting the Cornish Case.


Dilemma Regarding

the Tin Industry

Tin has been mined in Cornwall on and off throughout the centuries. two years ago the last mine in Cornwall (South Crofty ) closed. As always economics play a crucial part; to extract the minerals from Cornish Mines as they become deeper requires the vast cost of pumping water from the workings, combined with finding new reserves, making the new ground workable for extraction. With the current price of Tin this becomes less realistic.

There are proposals to develop the Mine site and adjoining land with a high tech industry park, shopping mall and leisure facilities .

It is impossible not to look at this emotionally, and hard to be practical. The most painful thing would be the final removal of Crofty's Head Gear. We need to be sure that there is no hope for Cornish Mining before this happens.

At the time of closure mining techniques were well out of date, including reducing the size of rock underground with manual labour passing through a grizzly. Pumping was financed with expensive electricity via the National Grid. The mill is 10 to 12 miles away at Wheal Jane, and the life of the tailings dam at this site is rapidly coming to a close. There is no smelter in Cornwall, resulting in further transport costs.

We have been told talks are taking place with a business that believes there is sufficient ore above the county adit, to enable some viable extraction. We are being told by The Regional Development Agency there is no hope, we feel they have a hidden agenda. We in Cornwall would like to know the truth.

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Farming & Fishing

The only other traditional industries left in Cornwall after the loss of tin mining. Farming has been hit heavily by the BSE crisis, and is struggling to restore faith in its product, and fishing continues to suffer due to quotas and poor negotiations on behalf of the British Government with Europe regarding Fishing Grounds and access thereto.

Cornwall has a small amount of large farms and may need to market quality goods if possible with a Cornish "kitemark". Lessons might be obtained from our Breton Cousins, for example in forming more co-operatives . We could think towards a providing a rail head and warehousing to assist transportation.

Our fisherman need exclusive fishing rights to at least 3 miles from the Cornish coast, and sensible negotiated quotas.

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Control of Services Removed from Cornwall

Control of the Cornwall's Probation Service is to be combined with Devon to join Ambulance, Magistrates Courts and Police.

This is in line with Government policy throughout Britain using modern techniques such as call centers for communication.

However they ignore the fact that Cornwall is a peninsula, with sea on three sides and only joined to England (Devon) by aprox 11 miles of land. Where in other areas assistance can be called in a crisis from adjacent counties, this is not the case with Cornwall. Penzance is approx 73 miles (2hr traveling time) from the border with Devon. Place names are different and we actually have places with the same name miles apart. Local knowledge in Cornwall can be crucial - as has been shown with a larger than normal failure rate of emergency services to arrive within target times where they are required.

Deputations and arguments are being ignored by the intransigent Home Office. It only leaves the Fire Service to follow the same fate to see all of Cornwall's Emergency services controlled from the other side of the Tamar.

The Fire Service has now come under question we will fight to maintain this service in Cornwall and restore control of our other Emergency Services.


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Breaking the Chains.

By John Angarrack.

This book is available from Quill Distributors, 45 Higher Bore Street Bodmin, Kernow. GB PL31 1JS.

£10.00+£2.00 p&P. Overseas £16.00. Make cheques payable to John Angarrack.

In a review published in Cornwall First (The voice of Cornish Solidarity) Alan Prisk states "Breaking the Chains is a well-researched book with comprehensive reference and index sections. As you read this book you have no choice but to question every bit of history you have ever been taught.

The book is long, arguably over-long, a little repetitive, full of grammatical errors. But written from the heart by a very angry Cornishman. Take this opportunity to buy and read this book, get angry if that's the way it takes you, start asking the questions, If there are enough of us we'll change things. Whether native Cornish, of Cornish Blood , or that you are SOS KERNOW, Cornwall's Friend, join us to Break the Chains."

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Cornish Solidarity.

Cornish Solidarity was formed as a pressure group after the closure of South Crofty, the last Hard Rock Mine in Cornwall.

It is open to anybody ,as it is not connected to a political party. It produces "Cornwall First", a news letter every two months and this is free to members.

Having grown in the last two years, it fights on a broad basis for Cornish Issues.

Further information from:- Cornish Solidarity-70, Albany Road, Redruth. TR15 2HY. Tel: (+44) 1209 213016.

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