From This is Cornwall:
THE Grand Bard, Maureen Fuller, had a special message – "Start googling and find out your heritage" – for the people of Cornwall on St Piran's Day.
The grand bard took part in the procession over the dunes at Perranporth on the Sunday and on Wednesday, the saint's day, she took part in processions at Truro and Launceston.
Deputy Grand Bard Merv Davey played the pipes and also visited Bodmin.
In a message delivered to an enthusiastic crowd of around 1,000 of all ages gathered outside Truro Cathedral at the end of the annual procession on Wednesday Mrs Fuller made an impassioned plea for Cornish schoolchildren to learn about the national history of their homeland.
"History informs us all," said Mrs Fuller. "It shapes us and makes us who we are."
Making specific reference to a special year for Cornwall, the grand bard welcomed the long-awaited start of new excavations to uncover remains of the iconic St Piran's Oratory from the sand dunes near Perranporth.
She also welcomed the proposed development of new teaching materials, linked to the national curriculum, explaining the story of St Piran.
Surrounded by St Piran flags with their distinctive white cross on a black background, and the banners of Gorsedh Kernow and other Cornish cultural organisations, the grand bard encouraged a new spirit of learning through the experiences of those who were much more than just relics of the past.
She mentioned the great engineer Richard Trevithick, astronomer John Couch Adams of Laneast, near Launceston, chemist Humphry Davy, of Penzance, car designer Donald Healey, of Perranporth, who won the Monte Carlo Rally, and the 1908 Cornish rugby team which represented Great Britain in the Olympics of that year.
"It's so easy to find out about famous Cornish people and why they were so important in the development of our great culture and heritage, so my message to you all is please get on the internet and start googling," she said.
Amid shouts of "Kernow Bys Vykken," meaning "Cornwall for ever," Maureen Fuller concluded her message by wishing everyone a happy St Pirantide.
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