you want a fully independent Cornwall?
against the south west assembly
should our county be run? Have
your say on self-government, a south west assembly, Westminster
and the EU.
How can we preserve our unique culture and move forward in the 21st
you support the aims of Mebyon Kernow for a legislative Cornish
Assembly for self-government within the UK?
do you think greater independence could put off investment from
the rest of the UK?
we be better off as part of a south west assembly or would we
end up being governed by Bristol and Exeter?
you feel Cornish, British or both?
*latest mail from the top
here to have your say now
I hold to my belief that it is possible to identify with
being both Cornish & English as the history of the nation
we now live in is so closely woven together that in a modern
context I don’t think it’s that easy to distinguish
the definitions any more and can lead to very long philosophical
debates. I usually get round it by referring to myself as
British although maybe I’m now European.
I worry that such a distinction invariably leads to isolationism
that will not help Cornwalls future. It causes a 'them and
us' situation with people having to choose camps rather
than celebrate our shared history and create a better future
for Cornwall that is able to become a viable and prosperous
part of the UK and Europe.
As far as I am aware the current state of the governments
proposal on devolution is very encouraging for us and far
from trying to legislate Cornwall out of existence. The
white paper, which did not address the Cornish Question,
but laid out the framework for consultation on devolution,
has given us a real opportunity for change. The response
by the Cornish electorate through the petition has showed
overwhelming and unprecedented support for a government
consultation process and along with the constitutional report
from Mark Sandham at UCL has started to make the government
take the ‘Cornish Question’ seriously.
– With reference to the Cornish language you will
find that the Bryothonic (British) tongue was spoken across
most of Britain before the arrival of the Romans and survived
with many Latinisations by them. It was the Saxons who used
the word wealas (most likely meaning foreigners) to refer
to any inhabitants who were not like them. From which is
derived the name of Wales and the Wall of Cornwall. After
Wessex’s victory at Deorham around 577 the Britons
of the West Country were cut off from those of Wales and
as such the languages evolved separately into Modern Welsh
& Cornish. The bryothonic languages would have survived
in pockets spoken throughout the West Country until being
superseded by the Saxon tongue as Wessex expanded. Both
what you call West Country Brythonic and Cornish are separate
languages derived from a Common root. Like any language
it continuously evolves and once speakers are cut of from
each other the language will diverge into separate languages.
The Cornish that was spoken in say the 10th Century would
be very different to that of the 17th Century, which does
lead to confusion in finding an accurate modern pronunciation
as it is based on the interpretations of texts and manuscripts
from different periods. I do not know of any surviving texts
or manuscripts from any other Bryothonic tongue so as such
would assume it would be very difficult to resurrect this
Adrian - As it happens, a group of us have been working on
the idea of getting some factual material into print. I'll
ask somebody to get in touch with you. Oh, and I wouldn't
worry too much about old Steve - he's obviously upset about
something quite beyond our control, and nothing we say is
going to calm him down.
Phil - what you say about categories of housing is, of course,
quite right. Without a strong public sector, the hopes of
ordinary people for a decent home are going to remain as no
more than hopes. The point about the Duke of Cornwall is NOT
a personal one. He continually neglects his duties, and abuses
his privileges - granted to him solely in respect of his duties
- for personal gain. John Angarrack's books give a very clear
rundown on this and related issues, with a wealth of evidence.
Pete - you're quite right that it won't be enough to address
one issue. All I meant was that I'd like to hear people's
views on what housing policies our Assembly should put into
action. What do people think we ought to do about, say, education,
or transport? As to the point about dual loyalty, I'm not
convinced that this is viable ! any more, especially when
our powerful neighbour is bent on legislating Cornwall out
Mark - best of luck to you and your friends in your search
for identity and self-determination. We will support you every
step of your way. But as for consenting to our own abolition
- if the significance growing wave of resistance is not yet
clear, let me spell it out: WE.DON'T.WANT.IT!
This is rubbish. There are celtic words from Devon to somerset
to dorset. In fact that was one of the reasons none of these
places aquired the english -shire on their name. What is now
called west country Brythonic (cornish to you) originated
in what is now devon, and the will of the ex-wessex king supports
this (not sure how look it up on the book with the name west
Cornish is the same (except a few mispronounciations caused
by the revival) that was spoken across what the romans called
the waelsh (welsh - but not the same as those in wales lol)
lands of south west britain. The cornish didn't invent the
language nor do they hold rights to it. It is commonly thought
here that brythonic (our name for cornish) will be taught
in Devon, Dorset and Somerset as part of our heritage. DNA
tests have also proven that most devon and somerset families
are briton not saxon in origin. Lastly more schools teach
cornish in devon than in cornwall. Get used to it please.
Why can't the four counties create a region? As long as its
the western area and not bristol. Cheers, mark.
Tim ... yes, we should get together to publish some useful
ammo. I'm sure the Executive Committee of the Cornish Constitutional
Convention might welcome that sort of practical support.
But we should check they haven't already published it (eg
through their website) before reinventing that sort of wheel!
As for the housing policies you've suggested, those sort
of measures might make a lot of sense. They are partly the
responsibility, currently, of District Councils, and would
remain so under either the Government's proposals for a
Regional Assembly (whatever its boundaries) or the Convention's
more powerful Senedh Kernow. I like the idea of the Stannary
Parliament altering the Duchy's land rights and priveliges,
but I suspect it might also be necessary to change primary
legislation in the UK Parliament, with or without devolution
of power to a Senedh Kernow. Tell us more, Tim ... how would
the Stannary process work?
Watts, Flushing, Falmouth
Steve, I'm glad my response to you evidently hit home! But
if only you were as intelligently responsive as the BBC!!!!
After repeated 'insults' from me (as you call them) what
were in fact reasoned criticisms of the introductory wording
to this part of the BBC Cornwall website have been listened
to by the editorial team ... hence the new wording. I am
very grateful to the BBC staff involved for considering
my suggestions (and no doubt those of others). The new wording
is a big improvement, but has so far not noticeably raised
the level of debate here ... perhaps it will, in time.
your selective quotation of my previous postings out of
context serves to reverse their meaning. That is a fascist
journalistic technique, in my humble opinion, Steve, and
I would be grateful if you would desist! I too disapprove
of racism, as a matter of fact, whether that be anti-Cornish
racism by people from England or anywhere else, or, indeed,
anti-English racism by Cornish or any other individuals.
As I have said before, in my experience of living in or
near Cornwall over many years at different periods of my
almost 50 years of life so far, I have observed many more
examples of the former than of the latter. This is mainly
due, perhaps, to the relative numbers of racists compared
to total population on each side of the Tamar (the proportion
is probably very similar, but you don't get many Cornish
skinheads compared to the English variety, and likewise
respective memberships of the British National Party are
probably very different in terms of absolute numbers).
I accept that you do not believe you are being racist, but
you are evidently oblivious to the racist offence your own
previous postings could have caused to the millions of people
of Cornish ethnicity around the world (however few may have
read your words or mine!). As for poor old Lord Howe, of
course his speech was his own, even if carefully timed together
with 'the grandees' (that's a good old piece of seventeenth
century English political jargon, isn't it Steve, like the
word 'agitator', 'quaker' and 'ranter' ... both you and
I seem all too capable of fitting that last category!).
Or maybe you didn't actually hear what Howe said at the
time back in 1990 or whenever it was, or observe his body
language on the floor of the Commons? His words came from
the heart, and that is why they were so deadly to Thatcher's
political survival. We all owe a huge debt to that particular
dead sheep (Geoffrey Howe) I would say!!!
for English citizenship, Steve, there is no such thing in
law. Identity and ethnicity are different from legal citizenship,
of course. I was indeed born in Somerset of a Welsh mother
and an Australian father, and that makes me a British citizen
but not necessarily English. I stopped identifying myself
with the English under the elective dictator Thatcher, when
during those eleven long years, part of which I spent in
Scotland, she convinced me I was not one of 'THEM' (i.e.
I was not one of those she infamously claimed as 'One of
us'). Oh, and by the way, my wife is German, and my first
wife was the British-born daughter of a Berlin Jew ... my
two daughters had an Anzac great grandfather in one trench
at Passchendaele and a great grand uncle in a Pomeranian
grenadier regiment in the opposite trench. Half of that
Berliner's family were gassed in the death camps a couple
of decades later, just as my grandfather's trench gassing
is the only reason I was born in the UK at all. So I have
some direct family experience of what happens when racism
is applied in practice by a few more than a tiny handful
I would certainly not claim to be Cornish other than by
adoption, and that is a matter for the Cornish-born themselves
to judge, not you, Steve!!!
Watts, Flushing, Falmouth
Tim, I agree about ending the tax breaks on second homes.
In the Caradon area, at least in my village, they already
have a scheme whereby any new housing development has to
include a certain number of low-cost starter homes. Housing
Trusts like Midas and the Guinness Trust provide a percentage
of lower priced homes. What we really need is for the council
to be able to build houses for council house tenants again.
At the moment there are government restrictions preventing
enough council houses being built. Your third point I agree
with, but what does the fourth point achieve? I’m missing
the point there somewhere, what has the Duke done that annoys
homes certainly contribute to the housing problem in an
area like Cornwall, but so do people coming into Cornwall
from wealthier areas who are willing to pay higher prices
for the property. If local councils were able to build houses
intended for locals to buy, and they were able to keep prices
down, it may ease the situation. However, realistically
that would be difficult to manage. I remember several years
back Caradon District Council bought a load of land in Cawsand,
which was intended to go to locals at a cheap rate so that
they could build their own houses on it. Most of the land
was sold to outsiders and now there are huge multi-bedroomed
holiday homes there. It did not help the housing problem
one bit. It would have been better if the Council had built
there own houses on the land.
main problem with the lack of housing is that there are
not enough Studio apartments or single bedroom houses built.
Again in my village, there are some council flats that are
used for older residents that consist of a decent size double
bedroom and a smaller single bedroom (box room). This type
of housing would be ideal for young couples and, in a building
that takes up the area of two normal, semi-detached, three-bedroom
houses you can get four such flats.
At the moment the emphasis is on building high value, large
properties which make high profits. This needs to change
and we have to start building low cost housing again.
Phil, T Cornishman in Oman
- I don't think tackling just one issue, i.e. housing will
have the required affect in regenerating Cornwall as a viable
region. While it would be of benefit in alleviating the
current housing problem it would not be of any long-term
benefit unless used as part of a wider policy to regenerate
the economy and fortunes of Cornwall.
That is where I think the idea of a responsible devolved
decision making assembly as put forward by this discussion
board would be of benefit to the region. Instead of coming
up with individualist polices from the numerous bodies based
around the country a legislative assembly with the power
to invest the objective one funding and gain a fairer share
of UK funding resources would be more effective in once
again making Cornwall a viable and prosperous region within
am completely behind the idea of a devolved government and
would hate to see this opportunity squandered by confusing
the need for regeneration and change with a separatist agenda.
As for the idea of the majority of Cornishmen not being
able to identify with both Cornwall & England I would cast
your mind back to the world cup. Anyone go to the pub or
wonder why the St Piran flags were red & white during June?
I'd like to hear your views on a few ideas about housing.
How about these? (1) End to tax-break on second homes. (2)
No planning permission for new developments unless at least
50% of accommodation is in affordable units attainable for
local average income. (3) Accommodation left vacant for more
than a year to be brought within local authority control (NOT
ownership) to fulfil local housing needs. (4) The Duke of
Cornwall's exemption from planning control's to be abolished
by the Stannary Parliament.
Dead sheep scrapes barrel in insult fest’. Oxymoron raises
ugly head in gobbledegook fiasco. ‘Adrian speak’ judges ask
"Just what is an elective dictatorship?" They also question
Watts’ reasoning - as in the same breath he supports free
speech, then tells the boy from up North just what to do with
his opinions….. Lexicographers express concern that the words
‘ignorant’ and ‘imperialist’ are in danger of becoming clichés
after excessive use by man who failed to get new dictionary
Garrett, weary through readers failing to grasp nuances in
postings thinks about throwing towel in and going back to
watching paint dry, but through eleventh hour encouragement
from an unexpected source (thanks Tim), vows to carry on.
Garrett also avoids stooping to third form, ‘sucks yahboo’
Adrian insult (‘but you are too dim to recognise it!) by not
‘electrically’ linking it with adversary’s surname……. I appear
to have joined a not so exclusive insults club.
Below are detailed some unfortunates (by no means all!) that
have also been at the wrong end of the tour de force that
is Adrian Watts. I précis a few random dips into the ‘World
of Watts’ - Pearly King ("Pearly King of London shows his
ignorance"), the BBC ("BBC Cornwall are either being lazy
or stupid"), almost the ENTIRE English Nation ("outsiders
from across the Tamar are domineering, intolerant arrogant
Englishpersons in a long tradition of cultural and political
imperialism in their attitudes to Cornwall and the Cornish!")
……….. Oh, and some ‘deluded’ Cornish people ("it is not possible
to be both Cornish and English - Cornish and British certainly,
(and European, as well as just plain human) but not Cornish
(A few Cornishmen and women argue the opposite, but they appear
to be a small confused minority!"). All bracketed extracts
taken from Mr Watts’ postings on this site. Your objectivity
is dead and buried under the puffed up sense of over importance
you wear like a badge of honour. You remind me of the man
who has given up smoking, or just discovered religion. I love
the way you accuse me of being "offensive and abusive from
a Cornish perspective" Adrian, if you would like to add up
all the people YOU have offended as detailed above it comes
to over 50 million (plus a dear old Aunty!).
I will tell you ONCE MORE regarding my reply to the Sandman,
read and absorb! I was supporting Bob Burn’s right to an opinion,
whereas Sandman was TRIVIALISING Bob’s contribution. Not for
any other reasons other than where he was born and where he
is now living. I WAS NOT being racist to Sandman (the Neanderthal
– like bar room tirade I can take, but NEVER EVER accuse me
of being a racist). I was merely defending another contributor’s
(BB’s) right to post on the site and highlighting Sandman’s
own exclusionist tendencies.
HE was preaching exclusivity through geography and birthright
– where HE was born and where HE is living. It really isn’t
rocket science, or mutton dressed as lamb - maybe you missed
the subtlety in the dimness? And as for Sir Geoff’ – you don’t
think it was he that initiated the speech that toppled Thatcher’s
leadership do you? It was fed to him by the back room grandees.
The chamber was packed to the gunnels, everyone knew what
was coming – it had been leaked by the men in grey suits.
The sheep did as he was told! Finally, were you born in Somerset?
If you were, you‘re English! So why are you the ONLY Englishperson
that isn’t domineering, intolerant and arrogant? Because,
as you said yourself, you clearly think the rest of us are
(a bit of ethnic typecasting there I think).
Or is it, if you go west across the Tamar to live, you cease
to be domineering, etc etc (and cease to be English as well?).
Do the two go together? Not very logical is it Adrian? Or
are you an Englishman in denial – because it just doesn’t
fit the ethnic matrix? Very last note Ade, believe it or not,
I DO find your description "domineering etc, etc", highly
offensive and abusive – and dare I say it, just about as ignorant
as it gets.
Steve Garrett, Lancs
Phil T. - Thanks for the stats. I'll be able to save them
up for what my mum calls a carefully-rehearsed spontaneous
Adrian - Don't you think it's about time people interested
in these matters got together and published the facts in easily-accessible
formats? Victor - your strictures about the building in Edinburgh
apply to ALL elected bodies. Taken to its logical conclusion,
your argument would require the abolition of representative
government altogether! While I agree with you that we should
take pride in the achievements of our forebears, we also have
a duty to our descendants to give THEM something to be proud
The present order of things has demonstrated time and again
that those in charge will do their damnedest to prevent our
doing this. I hope very much that you'll check out Phil T's
facts, which have taken a lot of effort to gather. We all
owe Phil a debt of thanks for these, and if we dismiss them
without examining them then we'll end up like the professor
of astronomy who refused to look at Galileo's telescope. I
was last in your town about eighteen months ago. Launceston
is a place of which I am very fond, and I love the work of
Charles Causley, one of the greatest living Cornishmen.
Tourism is the only industry in Cornwall which is substantially
increasing on a regular basis. Some people feel that tourism
is not the way forward for a steady economic growth in Cornwall.
However, projects such as the Eden Project and the National
Maritime Museum have created hundreds of jobs in the area.
Would it be better to exploit our forestry and agriculture
instead of tourism or is that not realistic?
Phil, T Cornishman in Oman
Victor, a few years ago people in Wales and Scotland were
considered idiotic and romanticists. However, today they
have their own devolved assemblies and governments. As stated
many times before, Cornwall contributes much more to the
British coffers in taxes than it receives back, so it should
not be a burden on the British economy. Anyway, what if
would only mean that we get back some of the money that
past British governments have plundered from us. So, fair’s
fair. I agree with you though, that defacing road signs
does not add anything to the beautification of our county.
for the “idiotic notion of Cornish independence” we will
all have to just wait and see. The time is rapidly approaching
when people are going to have to listen, because the voice
is gradually getting louder and louder. Ridicule it if you
will, but the Cornish will only take so much abuse before
Cornishman in Oman
Phil T is a mine of valuable hard facts as ever. It is very
sad that civil servants in the Deputy Prime Minister's office
insist on ignoring such evidence, and that they believe
they know best ... and that, according to them, 'Cornwall
is too small' to be a region in its own right for the purposes
of electing its own assembly with new powers devolved from
Westminster (under current Government proposals). You, Phil,
and others have adduced plentiful evidence to the contrary.
It is sadder still that Candy Atherton MP, the only Labour
member in an otherwise all Lib Dem set of MPs for Cornish
constituencies, agrees with those civil servants (none of
whom, I believe, are Cornish, or know Cornwall very well
if at all). Mind you, as Andrew George MP has pointed out,
Ms Atherton is the Government's representative in Cornwall,
whereas the four other MPs with seats West of the Tamar
are Cornwall's representatives to the Government!
Those of us in the Falmouth/Camborne Constituency, whichever
way we voted last time and before, need to bear this in
mind at the next general election.
Watts, Flushing, Falmouth
There is a lot to be said for being proud of your heritage.
There is, however, very little merit in greater devolution
for Cornwall, just to feed the egos of a few self-serving
Cornish politicians and a few Cornish people with an inferiority
complex. Cornish taxpayers like me would be asked to foot
the bill when members of a Cornish assembly decided to surround
themselves with the trappings of devolved power. The farce
over the Scottish Parliament building is a case in point.
From an estimated cost of £40 million, the final costruction
bill will be £400 million. Now, I'm not suggesting a Cornish
assembly would cost anything like that, but the trend of
devolved bodies is always to spend our money in the name
of 'greater representation'. Well, no thanks. I'll stick
to being represented as I am. And spare me the cod-statistics
showing how Cornwall could support itself without outside
'interference'. Common sense will prevail and the idiotic
notion of Cornish ! independence will remain a pipe dream.
As for the morons vandalising the tourist signs in Cornwall,
if you want to make your beloved County look like a slum-ghetto,
Tim, the following link will put you onto the Luxembourg
government statistics site, which I think is the most relevant
to Cornwall’s interests considering the similarities to
our situations:- http://statec.gouvernement.lu/html_en/statistiques/
The following are some extracts from that site:- Employment
“There has been very strong growth in internal employment,
which includes the borderers from the adjacent countries,
but excludes the officials and agents of the international
institutions established in Luxembourg. Between 1985 and
1994, 46300 new jobs were registered (+28.8%). The Luxembourg
labour market is characterised by the major role played
by foreigners who now form more than 50% of the labour force
working within the territory of the Grand Duchy. In 1994,
nearly 25% of Luxembourg's internal labour force were frontier
workers, of whom about 5% from Germany, 12% from France
and 8% from Belgium, foreign residents represented 28% and
only 47% were residents of Luxembourg nationality. Over
the past twenty years, nearly the entire increase in internal
employment has been met by the increase in the number of
foreign workers, immigrants or borderers. It is they who
have enabled the additional demand for labour to be satisfied
over the past ten years, while the number of nationals available
to the labour market has remained more or less stable. There
are two categories: residents and frontier workers. The
latter play a vital role in the vigorous growth of employment.
From 16 100 in 1985, their number swelled to 51 300 in 1994,
i.e. a leap of 218%.
The number of unemployed registered with the Employment
Office, which is traditionally low, rose worryingly in 1994
and 1995, with the number of people affected exceeding the
5000 mark. At nearly 3%, the unemployment rate has reached
an exceptionally high level for Luxembourg.
The demographic trend in the past 25 years may be broken
down into several periods: 1970-1975: Although deaths exceeded
births in number, the population grew considerably on account
of a massive influx of foreigners. 1976-1985: With births
and deaths practically equal in number and low net immigration,
the population only increased slightly. 1986-1995: A rise
in the birth rate, a fall in the mortality rate and a hefty
increase in arrivals from abroad resulted in a resumption
in population growth which is gathering pace (during the
period 1990-1995, the total annual growth rate is around
development of the system of social protection
In Luxembourg, as in most countries, the social security
system was built in several stages. It has been extended
with regard to both the socio-professional categories and
the risk groups covered. The relatively long time taken
for the integration of the self-employed professions should
however be noted. The most recent major innovation was the
Law of 26 July 1986 introducing the minimum wage, a mechanism
to guarantee resources. It consists of a supplementary benefit
paid up to a threshold of resources determined according
to the composition of the household. This benefit is awarded
irrespective of the causes of the situation of need.
For the time being, current revenue exceeds expenditure.
The significance of social security revenue and expenditure
in relation to GDP has increased continually over the years.
Today, the deductions from GDP reach a proportion in the
vicinity of 30%. Public contributions play a growing role
in financing the system. At present, they account for 40%
of the resources, with employees' and employers' contributions
forming just over half. The functional distribution of the
social security benefits shows the dominance of the pension
scheme, which accounts for only just under 50% of the entire
benefits. With about quarter of the total, health insurance
comes second. Comparing the public contributions to the
ordinary expenditure under the government budget, the steady
growth in the place taken by social security in public finance
becomes obvious. Nearly half the ordinary budget is absorbed
by social security.” The above are direct quotations from
the Luxembourg site and as you see, they are not too bad.
I particularly like the sentence “At nearly 3%, the unemployment
rate has reached an exceptionally high level for Luxembourg”.
There are plenty more facts on this site which make interesting
T, Cornishman in Oman
I believe that the equivalent web-site to this on BBC Devon
has shown that the majority of respondents would prefer
greater devolution to a Devonian assembly above all others.
A significant minority propose a Cornwall/Devon (Kernow/Dewnans)
assembly, and certainly my view is that this is preferable
to the current 7 county mega-region. Davyth may be interested
to know that there are suggestions that the Celtic language
of Devon was somewhat seperate and distinct from that of
Cornwall - for whatever reason. I can refer you to a booklet
publication by Jospeh Biddulph - titled "An Introduction
to Westcountry Brythonic (Old Devonian)" which can be ordered
from the author in Kembry/Cymru. It is based on the Celtic
language of Devon at the beginning of the 10th Century.
Paul Turner, Adelaide, Oz
Steve Garrett, I have read the EDP mandate and you are correct.
I can agree with a great deal of what they are saying. Most
of their mandate is what is included in the Mebyon Kernow
mandate and it is what MK wants for Cornwall.
are one or two things that I could not agree to though,
for instance the drug policy. Also, the sentence “We favour………greater
autonomy for Cornwall” is not convincing enough for me.
There is no guarantee that it would be enthusiastically
pursued and, why should Cornwall expect better treatment
from a government, whose origins are from the country that
has refused to assist us for decades in the past. Cornwall
would still be the poor relation on the fringes of the nation.
Other than that, it all sounds wonderfully utopian. I wonder
how all these ideas will be paid for and whether the EU
would agree to having their powers reduced. I am not a socialist
but most of these views are socialist. I think Cornwall
has more of a chance of devolution than England has of having
their own parliament. So I will continue to support a Cornish
Assembly because, for me, it represents a more realistic
and favourable approach than the EDP. I continue to feel
that Cornish affairs would be better handled by people who
reside in Cornwall. However, all that said, I thank you
for offering us the opportunity to consider other alternatives.
This is the kind of information most of us are looking for.
Phil T, Cornishman in Oman
My apologies for having got the wrong end of the stick. From
the numerous postings you made I formed the impression that
you at first wanted to annex us to Devon, but then that you
had changed your mind and wanted Devon to be autonomous. Im
reaching this conclusion I relied on your entire contribution
to this correspondence, and not solely on the one that followed
As I have already said, I do not expect you to take my word
for anything. The sources referred to in Paul Laity's and
my 'The Reason Why' will give you a full account of the juridical
context in which the Stannators and their supporters are working.
Briefly, the point is that Cornish sovereignty has never been
extinguished, and that this is sustainable in English and
International Law as well as in Cornish Law (of which what
Professor Pennington calls 'Stannary Law') is only a part.
Consequently, there were no lawful grounds for the body calling
itself 'English Heritage' to purport to exerci! se any control
over the real property to which you refer. Jim, Your willingness
to suffer for the freedom of your land is a very, er, moving
example. Which Guildhall did you have in mind? In hoamge to
your manly example, I must turn up with my little Box Brownie
to record the historic occasion for, um, posteriry.
Adrian, Your patience is commendable, but the kindest thing
would be to just let him exercise his right to freedom of
speech - unimpeded!
I would propose a Kernow/Cornwall & Dewnans/Devon region with
the capital based in Launceston as a possible solution. The
town at present is vertually equidistant from West Cornwall
to East Devon and is also near Plymouth and Barnstaple. This
would no doubt help the Cornish economy and that of West and
North Devon which have deprived areas. Plymouth would not
be forgotton as its the largest urban area on the Peninsular
and Keresk/Exeter would not suffer as it would remain the
transport hub for the peninsular. And more importantly Kernow
would receive high powered, high paid jobs! The Romans called
the Cornwall & Devon province Dumnonia. PS I would like to
see Bilingual (Cornish/English) signs throughout Cornwall
and Devon as soon as possible.
átha Cliath/Dublin ex (Dewnans/Devon)
If you would care to look back through the postings, you would
see that my rather long posting about the Stannaries was in
direct response to Phil T's request for information (from
me among others) concerning the Stannaries and Stannary Law.
It was not meant as a means of promoting Devon's case for
its own regional assembly. I included the word 'Devon' only
where it was used in the Charters, i.e. the excerpts I quoted
were not 'doctored' in any way. I stated that Sandman knew
virtually nothing about the history and laws of the Stannaries,
based on the content of his vitriolic attack on me. If he
had been aware of the content of the Stannary Charters, he
would not have made the preposterous pronouncements about
Devon, which he included in his post. The point I was trying
to make about the 'Stannary Three' (perhaps ambiguously),
was to question what this had to do with Stannary Law, as
it relates to those engaged in the tin extraction industry.
I co! uld not see the connection between tin extraction and
ancient monuments. Perhaps you could enlighten me on this.
Bob Burns, Barton-upon-Humber
I do agree, Steve, but I wish you'd mind your own business
and let us run our own affairs, and stop wasting time and
space on this site with your own brand of English superiority
complex and imperialist anti-Cornish rantings! Free speech
is fine, but most of your postings are simply offensive and
abusive from a Cornish perspective, because of the audacity
of your ignorance.
You say you are asserting a right to free speech, but you
have ignored Sandman's Immunity Certificate point which is
central to the rights of Cornish people not only to free speech,
but to self determination under all international human rights
law. Your criticisms of Sandman on grounds of birthright and
geography are racist too, but you are too dim to recognise
it! How's that for a dead sheep? (And Howe did alright in
the end, didn't he ... after all his final major Commons speech
in 1990 was the coup de grace which destroyed Thatcher's elective
dictatorship, wasn't it?)
Adrian Watts, Flushing, Falmouth
Phil T, I thought that you may be interested in the following
information. As you may know, I would like an English Parliament,
as I believe that this would free up resources that could
be concentrated within.
Focus on our Country’s problems will cure some of the many
ills that beset it and calm some of the turmoil that is brewing
nationwide. I am a disillusioned voter, the English Democratic
Party is an organisation that I suppose I now have most in
common with. Their main focus is essentially to get an English
Parliament, the party is wholly democratic and is situated
across the conventional political spectrum. Within its manifesto
is a pledge for a looser relationship with Europe – something
I warm to.
Also within the document is a commitment of autonomy for Cornwall
– and they are also against regional assemblies. If you look
at the manifesto, there are remarkable similarities between
EDP aims and a lot of the frustrations that contributors to
this site are stating day after day. As far as I am aware,
this party intends to put up as many candidates as they can
for the next election. Maybe this would be your most realistic
route for change in Cornwall? Anyway, have a read, you may
empathise with it more than you are willing to admit. If you
are interested, the web address is http://www.englishdemocrats.org.uk
steve garrett, Lancashire
The BBC is not responsible
for the content of external websites
Phil - another VERY useful collection of information. Can
you dig up more detailed figures in respect of housing, education,
and health provision? Bob - I can see you've been researching
very hard on this subject, and have a lot of useful expertise.
So have the Stannary Three, and you do yourself no credit
by gratuitous ad hominem slurs on them. Much of what you say
is, however, already familiar to us, but it's also plain that
you're not aware of the full juridical context.
As I've already explained, I don't expect you to take my word
for anything. I can see that you feel very strongly about
the identity of Devon but, with respect, we are not the people
who you need to convince on this issue. First you will need
to mobilize your own people, and then persuade Westminster
and Whitehall to listen to you. Meanwhile, much as appreciate
your sincerity I must observe that constant haranguing from
across the Tamar is only going to confirm our conclusion that
we need self-government! Adrian - Thanks for your kind words.
We'll just have to keep chipping away at that Whitehall/Westminster
determination to erase us with facts, facts, facts. Mary -
Thanks for your good wishes - we need the support of all decent
I was not born in Cornwall but I love the County with a
passion, and I would dearly like to see a Cornish Assembly
to run this beautiful land, asI think the County would be
run by people who would care for all people and only have
all our best interests at heart.
Mary, St Agnes
Shock, horror! No mercy shown as Watts goes in for the kill!
Lancastrian Scouser gets just desserts in devastatingly witty
‘Poor old Steve’ gambit. Garrett, groggy on the ropes, desperately
hangs on as Watts’ rains body shot after stunning body shot….
Adrian, now I know how Dennis Healey felt after he had been
given a thoroughly good moribund ovine examination by Sir
Geoffrey Howe. Like Dennis, I am not too impressed, depressed
or worried – after all, how much savaging can a toothless
dead sheep do? I DO think however that you have a real superiority
complex. You accuse me of "more likely failing to grasp" –
like I am some sort of feeble minded dimwit. Just who do you
think you are? In effect, Sandman was preaching exclusivity
through geography and birthright. I was merely highlighting
the importance of free speech – from whoever and wherever
it comes from. It’s THAT important, even more so than
Sandman’s PIIC information. I trust you agree..
Steve Garrett, Lancashire
Thanks Bob for, probably the most informative posting on this
site yet. It certainly enlightens me concerning the Stannary
Laws and I'm sure other people are now much more aware of
the situation. This is the kind of information that most of
Phil T, Cornishman in Oman
Bledhenn Nëwydh Dha! Thanks for the statistics, Phil T - VERY
useful! Could you dig up some gen on what the fiscal and financial
systems are extracting? I believe there was an article on
a magazine with a title like 'Business World' a while ago.
Interesting stuff on the state of play of one of the Stannary
issues, Sandman. Keep us informed! Bob - you can take it as
read that, determined as we are to continue being good neighbours
to you, we fully support your right to self-determination.
This can only benefit everybody. Please keep us updated on
your people's campaign for self-determination. Merlin - why
not come and spend a holiday amongst us? You'll find we're
not nearly as threatening as you'd thought. Try to avoid the
summer, though - we're almost as crowded as Venice! If you
come in Spring or Autumn, people will have more time to talk
with you. (Avoid winter, too, unless you're VERY interested
Sandman, Rysrudth, you are obviously much more informed about
the Stannary rights than I am. To be honest, I only became
interested in the Cornish Assembly debate after reading so
many biased and anti remarks on this website. If I read your
posting correctly you indicated there that there was a successful
attempt to prevent these ancient Stannary Laws being viewed
in public under the watchful eye of the press. Was that correct?
If so, my previous posting suggested that maybe there are
some basic human rights being violated here. Is that also
correct? Wouldn't it be possible to take the case to the European
Court of Human Rights for a ruling as to whether or not the
Stannary Laws are legal and binding? As I said, I am not really
that well informed concerning these laws so maybe someone
can explain to me, and I'm sure there are many more like me,
the basic facts.
PhilT, Cornishman in Oman
Well well, no sooner do we start getting into serious discussions
concerning the issue of devolution in the South West and the
implications for Cornwall, when yet another ill-informed extreme
Nationalist crawls out of the woodwork to trivialise the debate
yet again. Who am I referring to, why Sandman (Rysrudth) of
Why do I refer to him as ill-informed, because he obviously
knows very little about the history of the Stannaries. He
also implies that anyone not actually living in Cornwall has
no right to discuss these matters here. Sorry Tim (in Caerdydd)
and Phil T (in Oman). Sandman states that Cornwall has a unique
place in British Constitutional Law because of the Stannary
He is obviously unaware of the fact that the Royal Charters
of 1198, 1201, 1305 and 1466 refer to the administration of
the Stannaries of Cornwall and Devon. Yes, that is right Sandman,
"and Devon". Even the Bill of Rights of 1688 includes the
provision:- "Provided always that nothing in this Act shall
alter determine or make void the Charters granted to the Tinners
of Devon and Cornwall by any of the Kings and Queens of this
realme or any of the liberties, privileges or franchises of
the said tinners or to alter determine or make void the laws,
customs or constitutions of the Stannaries of Devon or Cornwall
or any of them".
Therefore I suggest that before Sandman attempts to get egg
all over his face again, he should educate himself in the
topic he wishes to discuss before opening his mouth and placing
his foot in it. Sandman then attempts to demonstrate the 'unique'
powers of the Cornish Stannaries, by referring to the case
of the three men who confiscated English Heritage signs.
Firstly, this case was probably regarded by the authorities
as being as trivial as a case of three naughty boys dropping
a firework in Mrs Pengelly’s dustbin. If Sandman wants
to know about a real case in which the Stannaries demonstrated
their power, he should do some research on the case of Richard
Strode MP, who in 1512, unsuccessfully tried to introduce
a Bill in the Westminster Parliament to prevent tinners from
exercising their ancient rights (as specified in the Stannary
Charters) to extract tin and other metals from areas close
to rivers, because of the pollution this caused in the river
Strode was brought in front of the Stannary Courts at the
four Stannary Towns and fined £40 at each. As he refused to
pay, he was incarcerated in the Stannary Prison, where he
remained for three week! s, and was then only released on
the condition that he paid a sum of £100 to the Stannary Court.
Why is this case little know about in Cornwall, and never
referred to by Cornish extremists? Answer, because it happened
in Devon, and the Stannary Courts concerned were at the four
Devon Stannary Towns of Tavistock, Plympton, Chagford and
Ashburton, and the Stannary Prison was at Lydford.
As for the rights and wrongs in the case of the confiscated
English Heritage signs, it very much depends on the definition
of the word 'English'. If it refers to the original derivation,
meaning 'of the Angles' (a Germanic tribe who arrived in Britain
at about the same time as the Saxons), then there is probably
a case for protesting about the signs. However, if the more
modern definition is used, referring to the descendents of
all the peoples who came to inhabit England, i.e. Britons
(Celts), Angles, Saxons, Jutes, Danes, Norwegians, Normans
and even the pre-Celtic Bronze Age people (who constructed
many of the monuments), etc., then the monuments are the heritage
of at least some of them.
Incidentally, nowhere South of the Thames do the descendents
of the Anglo-Saxons form the majority of the current population,
so these people at least can certainly claim that the ancient
monuments are their heritage. To conclude, Sandman's Constitution
and Charters are not unique to Cornwall, as they apply also
to Devon (sorry to destroy your illusions, Sandman), and Cornwall
is not even unique in having had its own language. I would
refer Sandman to the excellent little book "A Handbook of
West Country Brythonic (Old Devonian)" by Joseph Biddulph
(who is a well known Welsh linguistics expert). I believe
that Cumbria also had its own Brythonic Language until the
Middle Ages. Oh, and by the way Sandman, Devon has no wish
to take over Cornwall, so why all the fuss?
Bob Burns, Barton-upon-Humber
Well, well, well, it doesn't take long does it? The natural
comedians are coming out in force all right. I'm obviously
referring to the Sandman, cleverly taking regular contributor
Bob Burns' moniker, stretching his forename to Bobbie, changing
the 'B' to an 'R' to make 'Robbie' and getting ….. that's
right Robbie Burns - do you geddit? As in the lowland Scottish
poet - BRILLIANT! (Bob, you must be truly humbled by Sandman's
mastery of quick wit and ready repartee).
I've said it before, without people like Bob posting onto
this site it will become a meaningless self - congratulatory,
back - slapping 'yes' shop. What he says is always based on
fact rather than Sandman - like rhetoric …….. and even if
you don't agree surely you can appreciate the contribution.
Really Sandman, true Cornishmen shouldn't throw stones, it
will affect the tourist trade (you do still want us don't
you - but the question is do you think we still want to come?).
The entire basis of your posting is based on what you consider
as Bob's ineligibility to comment due to his ethnicity and
where he is now living. It's dangerous stuff Sandy baby, there
have been people on this site before, moaning about 'outsiders'
querying the lovefest that this forum would otherwise degenerate
into. I, as an Englishman (without quotes!), a licence fee
payer and a tourist believe it is my right to comment as I
see fit, within the site rules. If Cornwall is so fab' why,
(amongst other exiles) is Phil T in Oman, Tim Saunders in
Cardiff and John Bennetts in London? …… Oh that's right, they
were forced out? People like me - (born and brought up in
Liverpool) and 95% of my former classmates left because ….
Well can you guess why, Sandman and Phil T?
That's right, there were no jobs. (Special note to Phil T
- this is for your facts and figures file Phil, Liverpool
now has 9 of the 20 poorest post code areas within the WHOLE
of the UK). Who knows Sandman, maybe Bob was also forced out
of Devon to get work elsewhere, either way, it's probably
none of your business and certainly doesn't diminish his right
to comment. I now live in Lancashire, a special place, (although
not TOTALLY special) with its own language, culture, treaties,
charters, pointy bits sticking into the sea etc.
Bob comes from Devon (also a special place) and lives in Barton
upon Humber (another special place) - and Sandman, if you
think that Barton is at the edge of the 'Anglo Empire' ie
almost in Scotland, you need a new Geoggers book matey. And
as for the Stannary 3, the ancient monuments that they have
laid claim to have nothing to do with the Cornish people.
But hey, who wants a history lesson to queer the hidden agenda?
But maybe you do need a new history book.
Steve Garrett, Lancashire
Well, he's near enough to the furthest reaches of the "Anglo
Empire" to be (to all intents and purposes) of no use whatsoever
to the Cornish question as it will have absolutely no effect
on him so I would say we'll call him Robbie Burns!!
To him and all other parties to this site I would say that
yes we have the history, yes we have a separate culture, a
separate language, a sparate "ethnic identity" on the census
form (What a shame the Devonians don't !) in fact we have
everything that Robbie is envious of!! The main thing that
we in Kernow have that no other part of "England" has is a
unique place within British Constitutional Law as supported
by the court case against "English Heritage" by the Stannary
For those who are not aware, three Stannators confiscated
a number of EH signs from Cornish sites. The action was taken
after protracted communication with EH proved to no avail
with such communications from EH refusing to even meet to
discuss the issue. Each confiscation was filmed and put in
the public domain on their website, EH were informed of the
actions as were the police. Eventually, after being shoved
around many magistrates courts throughout Cornwall, the three
appeared at Truro Crown Court charged with theft and conspiracy
to commit criminal damage. Each faced up to 10 years in jail.
One Judge (Rucker) was dismissed for bias. One set of defense
team mysteriously had to retire and eventually the Crown Prosecution
Service sought and obtained a Public Interest Immunity Certificate
which prevented the prosecution from disclosing vital documented
evidence to the defence and barring the defense from using
Acts of Parliament and current constitutional law and statutes
to prove that they were within their rights to remove the
"foreign" signs from Cornish (pre English) sites.
Due to the PIIC, the prosecution offered no evidence and the
three Stannators were cleared of all charges and left the
court without a stain on their character. One really has to
ask why was a Public Interest immunity certificate issued
for a common charge of theft and conspiracy to commit criminal
damage? A PIIC is usually used for the security of the state.
I very much doubt that if Robbie up there in the North of
England decided to do something similar,told the police about
it and put all his actions into the public domain, that he
would be found not guilty for starters let alone have a PIIC
slapped on him!
The reason why the CPS slapped one on the three Stannators
was that there was so much corroborated evidence dealing with
Acts of Parliament and Statutes relating to the Duchy of Cornwall,
the Duke himself and the still extant Stannary Charters that
they had no choice. They could not have the information brought
out in open court. As to the conspiracy charge, as EH had
been informed of all the actions from day one and the police
and yet did nothing about it 17 times, does that not make
Cornwall IS totally special, we have a constitution, a language,
a unique set of treaties and charters that simply do not exist
in any other part of Britain (Especially Devon...sorry Bob)
So, lets have no more of your whining on about how wonderful
the county you left behind is . As you have chosen to live
where you have, take responsibility for YOUR area and let
us get on with taking responsibility for our own for as sure
as eggs is eggs, IT'LL NEVER BE YOURS !!
I thought some of you might be interested in some comparisons:
Areas of some countries:
Cornwall - approx. 3550 sq. km
Hong Kong - approx. 2990 sq. km
Bahrain - approx. 620 sq. km
Luxembourg - approx. 2600 sq. km
Singapore - approx. 620 sq. km
Monaco - approx. 2 sq. km
Malta - approx. 316 sq. km
of some countries:
Cornwall - 501 000
Monaco - 32 000
Malta - 400 000
Bahrain - 595 000
Brunei - 315 000
Iceland - 276 000
Luxembourg - 422 000
Qatar - 579 000
are many more like this out there in the real world. With
these facts in mind it is obvious that physical area or
population size does not necessarily need to be a hindrance
PhilT Cornishman in Oman
'Merlin', Worcester has obviously not been reading previous
postings or if he has then he cannot understand English. Cornwall
actually pays more than £350 million into the treasury through
taxes then it receives back. Unfortunately there are many
'English' who are as misinformed about Cornwall as 'Merlin'
and that is why we have a problem.
PhilT Cornishman in Oman
I totally agree - Cornwall should at the minimum be recognised
as a constituent country of the United Kingdom, and as a
consequence have its own National Assembly.
also believe that the most constructive thing to do if the
South West Regional Assembly is forced upon us, is to deny
its legitamacy in Cornwall. This could be achieved by all
Cornish voters and Politicians refusing to participate in
the S. W. Assembly.
other Points - (1) Gary - I don't think Cornwall should
harbour the desire to build an Empire, which would be the
consequence of incorporating Plymouth. The TAMAR is the
geographical and cultural border.
- I am not a Christian, and I understand your concern -
but please do not be unrealistic - the cross is used in
many European Countries flags. And the St Piran's Cross
flag is universally recognised by other Celtic countries..
If Cornwall gets independence, I'll show my @rse on the Guildhall
steps. Needless to say, neither event is likely or desirable.
Actually Paul T I was referring to the Stannary rights that
Cornwall is entitled to and not the issue concerning Prince
Charles. The Duke thing is a separate issue I think, and can
be resolved after there is some form of devolution. I also
think that the Cornish Assembly issue should be argued using
the economic reasons and democratic opinions first with the
historical links being used as back up. We stand more chance
of some form of success if this were so. As for independence,
realistically, I think that there is not much hope of that
in the near future but I think that it is possible for Cornwall
to achieve an Assembly.
T, Cornishman in Oman
Do you feel Cornish or British or both? Since the bulk of
the population of Cornwall is English and the whole phantasmagoria
of 'Kernow'-drivel is the mind-game of a few thousand pathetic
fantasists, I find the question deceitful and irrelevant.
Your ommision of 'English' as an option is telling and illustrates
your Unionist agenda. We will have an English Parliament for
the people of England. And if my view of Cornwall is wrong
and it is to be considered a separate nation, then consider
this: What right do the people of 'Kernow' have to any share
of England's resources? If you really are 'Cornish', then
presumably you will enthusiastically forgo the subsidies provided
by English taxpayers.
I assume from Phil T's comments that he means that IF Charles
is head of State in Cornwall if he is in Cornwall, because
he is the Duke of Cornwall, then somehow 'wrong has been done',
and hence the European court can be called into play. However,
doesn't the fact that Charles hardly ever strays into Cornwall
(or for that matter Wales, being the PoW) weaken this argument.
Surely looking to 'English' royalty (of German descent) for
a lineage somehow weaken the logic of this train of thought?
Surely if independence is what you seek it has to go beyond
the benediction of the 'invading forces'???
Paul T, Adelaide, Australia
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