There can be no doubt that in
Britain today, the Cornish people’s territory and status are being
altered/downgraded without their knowledge or approval. This covert process,
moving inexorably towards the final assimilation of the Cornish population, can
only be achieved by the following conditions being accepted, encouraged and
rewarded by the state: (1) A selectively applied breakdown of moral and ethical
standards leading to institutionalised administrative dishonesty and
governmental law-breaking, (2) Comprehensive historical revisionism and the
misapplication of due cultural funding coupled with the wholesale
misappropriation of Cornish cultural heritage, built environment and
intellectual property. At the vanguard of this process is an
educationally-driven policy of forced assimilation supported by
across-the-board political acquiescence and high level judicial complicity.
However, no directive to this effect will be found.
After centuries of working to an
imperialist agenda, the Westminster elite are fully adept at carrying out
politically sensitive, but necessarily unwritten, colonial policy. Therefore
absence of a written directive does not mean that any particular policy is not
being applied. For like a Black Hole in space, these integrated policies and
working practices are shown to be in existence not by any written directive,
but by the results they produce. Therefore let the reader be under no illusion.
The UK Government’s 21st century response to the centuries old
‘Cornish Question’ is to covertly instigate, and firmly apply, a comprehensive
programme of de-Cornishification.
When a state becomes locked into
an imperial mindset, a number of interlinking and complimentary initiatives are
required to achieve the overall objective. For example, there is the need to
render the victim territory politically impotent, to starve the separate and
competing culture of funding, to place tight control on what information is
available to children in school, to render the native population statistically
invisible, to stigmatise human rights activity as ‘dangerous’, to exclude the
native population from the safeguards available via the application of
international legal treaties and then to banish them to a legal no-mans-land if
they complain. On top of this, in order to maintain the constitutional
deception and status disentitlement, there is the absolute requirement to
create and disseminate a new history of the people and territory they inhabit -
one that states, suggests or implies by omission that the territory being
subsumed has been an integral part of the expanding and consolidating state
since time immemorial.
All these aspects of imperialism
compliment the other. For example, suppression of Cornish history prevents the
growth of awareness necessary to develop the critical mass required to reverse
covert territorial absorption and the associated status disenfranchisement of
the population. In this case, manifestations of Cornish history are viewed as a
dire threat to: (1) the states political objective and, (2) the duke’s covertly
exercised powers, rights and interests. Hence the Duchy and UK administrations
uniting in common cause.
Their shared objective means that
the over-riding priority for both parties is to exclude Cornish history not
only from schools, but also from the common pool of knowledge. In other words,
by teaching our children historical falsehoods, long-term public opinion is
artificially manipulated. By such means, the Duchy/UK governments pursue their
shared objectives in an uncritical, wholly sympathetic, political and
Therefore those who view such
policies and practices as morally, politically or legally objectionable should
do what they can to ensure that Cornish history is not only properly
articulated, but also disseminated into schools. Only by this means will
democracy flourish, the will of the people prevail and Cornwall find a more
productive balance between centralisation and autonomy.
History is an unusual
discipline, at its core is hard fact that you cannot get away from and have to
learn to master.
State Guidelines for the teaching
of history (1)
This website references many hard facts that the
government agency charged with compiling the structure and content of the
national curriculum refuses to incorporate into the curriculum.
pupils find evidence, weigh it up and reach their own conclusions. To do this
they need to be able to research, sift through evidence, and argue for their
point of view.
Grandiose claims of the state education
When it comes to the important
Cornish dimension in British history, pupils are prevented from finding the
evidence, weighing it up and reaching their own conclusions.
Currently, for each school
subject, the mandatory curriculum sets out what pupils should be taught. The
Qualifications and Curriculum Authority compiles this mandatory curriculum,
otherwise known as the national curriculum, but when asked why it makes no
reference to the Celts of Britain, the historic Cornish ethnic dimension or
Cornwall’s apparent change in status from constituent nation of Britain to
county of England, its officers firstly refuse to engage in dialogue on Cornish
history, and then offload responsibility onto the Secretary of State for
Curriculum is not QCA’s curriculum. It is the curriculum that is determined by
the Secretary of State for Education on behalf of the government. The National
Curriculum sets out a range of contexts through which knowledge, skills and
understanding should be taught. It is the responsibility of each school to
shape its own curriculum in line with statutory requirements. This means it
would be inappropriate for me to answer your questions.
Jerome Freeman, Principle Subject Officer:
When the Cornish complain to
government about the English National Curriculum indoctrinating Cornish
children with the history of another people in order to assimilate and coerce
them into adopting an English ethnic identity, ideological outlook and
political perspective, government evades responsibility by stating that it is
for schools to choose how they organise their school curriculum.
Cornish history, geography and language can be studied at school. The
National Curriculum sets out what pupils should be taught in Programmes of
Study which provide individual schools with the basis to plan lessons that suit
the needs of their pupils. Teachers can decide how these subjects are taught
and which aspects of a subject pupils will study in depth.
Stephen Twigg MP,
Secretary of State for Schools.(4)
Unsurprisingly, when Cornish
parents complain to schools about the absence of Cornish language, history and
culture at school, the response is that the schools must conform to the
National Curriculum is prescribed and it must be followed in all schools. As
governors it is our obligation to ensure that Nine Maidens CP School complies
with its statutory obligations under the law. The governors find no substance
in any of the allegations set out in your letter in respect of curriculum
teaching at the school. We are satisfied that the curriculum is taught in a
correct fair and balanced way. If you feel you have a problem with the National
Curriculum generally you are quite entitled to remove your child from the
maintained sector and send her to a non-maintained school which is not required
to follow the National Curriculum to the same extent.(5)
The parents removed their
children from the school. However, their anguish was subsequently echoed in a
front page Western Morning News feature headlined: Listen to voice of youth.
Alongside a picture of a 15-year-old Cornish schoolgirl was her plea to the
authorities: Young people want to be able to learn Cornish history, language
and culture at school.(6) Shortly after, the Cornwall Youth Forum’s ‘Young Peoples Manifesto’ stated: We
want the option to study Cornish history, culture, language and heritage at
schools, colleges and other places of learning.(7) Given the not so hidden agenda, all such
requests fall on deaf ears.
When a nine-year-old at Cardrew
Junior School stated in a geography lesson that Cornwall was not simply a
county, but also a Duchy and nation, she was ordered out of the room. The
teacher, a Mrs Ghent, later showed the young girl an atlas to ‘prove’ Cornwall
was simply a county of England. When the youngster said that an atlas printed
in England was bound to say that, she was disciplined further and made to write
a letter of apology.(8)
The Local Education Authority shall forbid the promotion
of partisan political views in the teaching of any subject. Political
indoctrination is forbidden. The LEA shall take steps to ensure that where
political issues are brought to the attention of pupils, pupils obtain a
balanced presentation of opposing views.
Sections 406 and 407, Education Act 1996.
States shall respect
the right of a child to preserve his or her identity. Where a child is
illegally deprived of some or all elements of his or her identity, States will
provide appropriate assistance and protection with a view to re-establishing
speedily his or her identity.
United Nation Convention on the Rights of
Although now having reached a
stage of high intensity, this anti-Cornish policy is not something new. Born at
Truthwall in November 1928, Peter Thomas was the grandson of a miner. Educated
first at the village school at Carnyorth, and later at the Penzance County
School. Writing in 1967 he recalled his schooldays:
When I went to Penzance to school in 1939,
we had strong Cornish accents, but they were beaten out of us - and when I say
beaten I mean beaten! The result was most of us have become cautious, reserved
Schools in Cornwall are not just
passive places of learning; they constitute the front line of a discreet
political and ideological battlefield where the weapon of choice is the English
National Curriculum – an unfettered instrument of inculcation and coercion
dressed up as being part of a fair, objective and law-abiding state education
Yet in any conflict zone there
are always those who are selected for special dispensation. The aims of
Cornwall Council’s former ‘Cornwall Traveller Education Support Service’
[CTESS] included: promoting knowledge and understanding of Traveller
communities in all schools, raising awareness of the diversity of
Traveller cultures, implementing teaching and curriculum development. CTESS documentation states: Traveller children may need cultural support in
school because teachers may have little information on Traveller culture and
Speaking at the 2005 annual
conference organised by CTESS held at the Penventon Hotel, Redruth, Ginny
Harrison-White,(10) Co-ordinator of the
have been in this country for over 500 years and have a long standing and
wonderful culture. We must ensure that they have the opportunity to be
included in everything, their individual needs are taken into account and
acknowledged and their culture is understood and celebrated by all. We want
every school in Cornwall to address Traveller issues as part of a whole school
strategy. This will involve engaging with parents and developing an
appropriate curriculum that affirms and celebrates all cultures.
CTESS’s Under Nineteen Initiative
for Traveller Education [UNITE] says:
Some causes for non-attendance at
Secondary school: Complete failure to teach a curriculum which reflects
Traveller culture, history and lifestyle. Traveller children see little that
relates to their own lives, language and culture and celebrate the feasts,
festivals, languages and cultures of many others – huge marginalisation.
In 2005 UNITE organised a
landscape gardening project at Poltair Community School and Sport College in St
Austell. A CTESS Powerpoint Presentation says:
has a significant number of Traveller young people on its register. In the last
Ofsted report [March 2004] twenty-three Traveller young people were on its
At the recent Manchester University launch of a Gypsy language DVD, Ginny
Harrison-White, Head of Cornwall Council’s new Equality and Diversity Service,
gave a speech:
Gypsy, Roma and Traveller pupils are too
often 'out of sight and out of mind. It is important that schools and children
are aware of the history, culture and language of children from these
As well as employing full time
CTESS staff, an additional programme allows for a number of Cultural Diversity
Support Officers to be based in Cornish schools. The term ‘Traveller’ embraces
Gypsies, Roma and Irish Travellers.
The 2007 PLASC [schools census]
return for Cornwall identified 143 Traveller children enrolled in Cornish
schools. The same PLASC return identified 19,450 Cornish children enrolled in
Cornish schools i.e. for every one Traveller pupil identified there were one
hundred and thirty-five Cornish pupils identified.(11)
Cornwall Council inform that the
Cornwall Traveller Education Support Service, now called the Equality and
Diversity Service, budget for 2007-8 is £220,000. The budget for Sense of Place
in the same year is £30,000.(12) Sense of Place is a placatory ‘local studies’ programme
reaching a tiny section of the school population for an hour or two over a
pupil’s entire 13-year school lifespan. It is dressed up by the state as being
a response to calls to teach Cornish subjects in school but is really a means
by which the state buys-off some discontent whilst maintaining its intensive
We have yet to hear Cornwall
Council’s Head of Equality and Diversity express disquiet over the vast disparity
in specialised educational provision and resource allocation between the two,
equally deserving, cultural minorities. We have also searched in vain for Ginny
Harrison-White’s speech about: How important it is that schools and children
are aware of the history, culture and language of the Cornish.
Is it any wonder that the state
authorities stand accused of attending to the educational needs of others, in
particularly the English, whilst overlooking the educational needs of the
In its defence, government points
to inclusion of the Cornish language in the Charter for Regional and Minority
Languages [ECRML] and the Sense of Place project already mentioned.
Under pressure, the government
allocated £80,000 per year for three years of direct central government funding
to the Cornish language. However, in that same period the Ulster-Scots Language
is being allocated £1,000,000 per year of direct government funding. And this
comes after government acknowledged
in its 1st European Charter for Regional and Minority Languages
compliance report that: There are no current demands from within the school
system for Ulster-Scots to be taught as a language. And while the
ECRML Level II Cornish language remains in the slow lane, the Ulster-Scots
language is to be made a ECRML Level III language.
When considered alongside other
state cultural funding, the funding for the Cornish language is minimal. For
example, it was recently announced that the South West Regional Development
Agency spent £1,300,000 on ‘works of art’.(13) Birmingham Royal Ballet Company has an
annual state subsidy of £7,500,000. (14) London’s up-market Royal Opera House has just undergone a
state-funded £214,000,000 refit.(15)
There was latitude to grant the
historic Cornish language much more funding if the government so wished it, for
Londoners receive double the cultural funding of people in Cornwall.(16)
Seven years have passed since
government ratified the ECRML and the Cornish language is as far away as ever
from entering schools. Experience tells us that even if it does find its way
into the education system, it will have mere symbolic presence
On 26 March 2003, Cornwall Council called an impromptu meeting of all
interested parties to discuss the way forward following the Cornish language
being accepted for ECRML recognition. The minutes of the meeting reveal CC
Director of Education taking the view that: The
curriculum was already overcrowded and the teaching of Cornish will require
creativity of thinking beyond the strictures of the national curriculum. The Portfolio Holder for Education at the time was Doris Ansari.
The minutes of the Cornish Language Advisory Group meeting of 14 October
2004 provide a further insight into official reaction to the Cornish language
achieving Charter status. Here we find not the upbeat and positive reaction of
state authorities to the Charter as implied by government in the narrative of
its second ECRML periodic report, but an entirely different reaction. The
minutes reveal that with regard to teaching the language in schools as part of
the curriculum, the Cornwall Council ‘Lifelong Learning’ Policy Development and
Scrutiny Committee expressed concern that: additional
pressures were not placed on teaching staff, who already had a clearly defined
National Curriculum to deliver to all students. The Committee therefore
decided that the language might be allowed to: become an extra curricular
subject in schools. This was nothing more than the pre-Charter position of
It is perplexing that the education authorities in Cornwall appear unable
to accommodate two languages in schools [English and Cornish], but London LEAs
can cope with 307 different languages in schools. (17) It was recently reported
that even a small UK city like Portsmouth can cater for the needs of pupils
speaking 57 languages in its schools.(18)
It is perhaps no coincidence
that at the time this recommendation was made, the Executive Member for
‘Lifelong Learning’ was Doris Ansari, for this is the same person who said that
it would be “dangerous” to acknowledge that Cornish and English pupils had
different educational needs.(19) Moreover, under her
political stewardship, the Chief Officer of the Cornwall Local Educational
Authority was permitted to covertly prevent pupils from registering their
identity as Cornish at school on the basis that it would be “potentially
dangerous” to do so.(20) Ansari’s Assistant
Director of Education went one further, telling a parent who complained that it
would be “unhelpful and unhealthy” for pupils to be able to record their
identity as Cornish.(21)
When mounting pressure forced a
response on this issue, Cllr Ansari asserted that whilst it was fine to collect
data on other ethnic groups, it would be “irrelevant”, “wasteful”, “serve no
practical purpose” and be “a waste of public resources” to collect and monitor
data on the Cornish.(22) These incidents reflect a consistent, but
usually covertly applied, approach to recognising and meeting the needs of
Cornish pupils within the education system.
This appears to be the view of the government’s Office for National
Statistics [ONS], for this body insists on repeating the same formula for the
2011 Census as it did for the 2001 Census. On that occasion, the ONS used a flawed
data collection method that undercounted numbers of Cornish people by a factor
of four. The government then used these knowingly false figures in a High Court
hearing to help undermine a case involving Cornish people claiming cultural
We have seen how the government deals with Cornish
history and language, but how does it react to Cornish culture? In 2000
Cornwall was made a European Union Objective 1 development zone. In July of
that year the European Commission ratified Cornwall’s Single Programming
Document [SPD]. The SPD was a legally binding document between the Commission
and the UK Government. The document highlighted five Objective 1 Priorities.
Priority 5 dealt with ‘Regional Distinctiveness’. As the region in question was
Cornwall, this translated to Cornish Distinctiveness
For the purposes of obtaining
Objective 1 status, the SPD accepted that Cornwall is: distinct from the
rest of the UK with a: historic cultural heritage different from the
rest of the UK. The UK’s SPD told the Commission that it viewed: erosion
of Cornish distinctiveness as a threat and pledged to enhance Cornwall’s: Celtic
affinities, Celtic Heritage, Cornish language and distinct identity.
Priority 5 was broken down into
four Measures [5.1, 5.2 etc]. The 5.1 pledge suggested that £20,000,000 was to
be injected into marketing, promoting and enhancing Cornish arts, culture and
heritage. On the face of it, over the six-year life of the Objective 1
programme, Cornish culture was to experience an unprecedented renaissance. On
this basis, the European Commission signed the document off.(24)
However, government ensured that
Cornwall was the only Objective I programme to be administered outside of the
region itself. The body with the most influence over Cornwall’s EU money was
the externally situated SW Regional Development Agency [RDA]. Shortly after securing the funds, its lead
It is a moot
point I think as to whether a Cornish culture and identity is helping to foster
a regional governance in the sense that the RDA might wish it or whether it is
actually fostering a separate identity as many in Cornwall would wish…..The
whole issue has been given a further twist with Objective 1 where the EU
recognises Cornwall as a separate region within Europe and that is in a sense
flat opposed to the RDA’s position …… it doesn’t particularly help the building
of a regional identity from Cornwall up to Gloucestershire and across to Dorset
to have the European Union recognising Cornwall as a separate region.(25)
The Government Office for the
South West, through the RDA, promptly established the Culture South West quango
that in turn produced a cultural strategy for Cornwall that completely ignored
Cornish culture.(26) Instead of securing economic benefits from Cornwall’s: Celtic affinities,
Celtic Heritage, Cornish language and distinct identity, much of Cornwall’s
Priority 5.1 funding ended up lining the pockets of endless bureaucrats, swanky
consultancy firms and wealthy tourism bosses.
The following Priority 5.1 grants are taken from the Objective One
- £484,000 awarded
to DACOM (Devon and Cornwall Overseas Marketing) Company to jointly promote the two counties as a
destination to the overseas travel trade and overseas visitors.
- £92,500 awarded to North Cornwall
District Council to provide additional tourism marketing for all of North
awarded to Cornwall Tourism Forum & Destination Marketing to create a high profile advertising
campaign in the national press to encourage visitors who might not
previously have considered Cornwall as destination for holidays or off
peak short breaks.
- £62,000 awarded
to King Harry Maritime Trail to promote mid-Cornwall as an 'off-peak' tourism destination [which
the Western Morning news described at the tile as: a new plan to lure tourists to cosy
hotels, top visitor attractions, gardens and cycle hire.]
- £70,000 awarded
to Destination Southwest to develop and extend the number of cruise liner visits to ports
within the South West.
- £1,523,000 awarded to Cornwall Gardens Development Project to raise
the national profile of gardens in Cornwall.
Only at the very last stages of the programme in 2006 were
the Objective I Partnership ordered by a begrudging government to direct some
Priority 5.1 funding to the Cornish language. The funding amounted to less than
one fifth of that which was awarded to raise the profile of Cornwall’s
multi-millionaire owned garden based tourist traps.
With little sign of Priority 5.1
being spent as per the SPD, the European Court of Auditors began receiving
complaints about the way Priority 5 was being handled. Shortly after the ECA
acknowledged these complaints, the Objective 1 Partnership commissioned
consultants to come up with a plan to promote Cornish heritage. Kinghurst
Consultancy suggested creating a body called Heritage Kernow. That body was
duly funded and launched with gusto - only to be killed-off at birth by
government cultural enforcer English Heritage.(27)
The Heritage Lottery Fund is
managed in a similar way. When an application by the Cornish Gorsedh to stage
an exhibition of its history was up for consideration at a HLF ‘Awards for All’
meeting, the Chairman said: We don’t want to make Cornwall anymore
independent than it already is do we? I can say that cant I? Nobody here is Cornish
right? It happened again when the Cornish Wrestling Association sought a
small HLF grant. This time funding was turned down on the pretext that Cornish
wrestling: was not officially regulated.(28)
It can easily be shown that the
government, and its various sub-departments, quango’s and other agencies, often trade
on Cornish attributes without acknowledging, promoting or funding those
attributes. These educational and cultural arms of the central authority then
build an administrative framework and funding ethos that functions to actively
promote policies and drive forward practices that have little or nothing to do
with Cornish culture. In other words, Cornish culture exists not because of
government but in spite of it.
These are mere examples of why we
do not need to discover any written policy directive to understand that the
joint de facto policy of the UK and Duchy Governments is to destroy the Cornish
identity and thereby expunge Cornishness as a human condition.
the National Curriculum for England: Key Stage 1-3. Jointly published by
the Department for Education and Employment and the Qualifications and
Curriculum Authority. HMSO 1999 p.15.
As above, p.14.
Letter of 9th February 2000. Freeman also copied his letter to QCA
Chief Executive Nick Tate.
Letter to Matthew Taylor MP, 1 July 2003.
Letter from Colin Gillingham, Chairman of Governors, Nine Maidens School,
Redruth, Cornwall to parents who complained about their children being
prevented from learning Cornish language, history and culture at school. 26th February 2002
February 4th 2003
CYF: A Young Peoples Manifesto for Cornwall 2002
Letter to me from Mr and Mrs Osborne [parents]. 20th April 2002.
Cornish Magazine Dec 1967 Vol 10, Number 8 p.189
All CTESS information from CC website, UNITE 2005 Powerpoint Presentation,
November 2003 CTESS job application form, Manchester University Faculty of
Humanities May 2007 Bulletin
Freedom of Information Act request. Response from Council dated 12th Feb 2008
Freedom of Information Act request. Response from Council dated 6th March 2008.
Western Morning News. Nov 10th 2005.
Arts Council England awards notification 2007/8.
Carrillion Construction website.
Western Morning News February 16th 2002.
17. January 2000 study by Dr. Philip Baker, London
School of Oriental and African Studies
Press report 22nd September 2005
19. Letter dated 14th August
2001. See p111, Scat t’Larrups.
20. Letter from Jonathan Harris. See p.
124, Scat t‘Larrups.
21. Letter from Helen Williams. See
p107, Scat t’Larrups.
22. Press release to Western Morning
news. See p.111, Scat t’Larrups.
23. See Scat t’Larrups? p.96-97.
See Our Future is History, p.225.
CSW, “In Search of Chunky Dunsters…..A Cultural Strategy for the South West.”
See pages 246/7, Our Future is History.
Direct quote from HLF member. See Our Future is History p.241.