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Peering into Bodmin’s past

Updated: Aug 24, 2022

Town gathers at St. Petroc’s Church for Bodmin Old Cornwall Society’s remembrance service

Stephanie Thomas (President, Bodmin Old Cornwall Society) and Cllr Phil Cooper (Mayor of Bodmin)

Revd Paul Holley (team rector, Bodmin Team Ministry) and two members of Newquay Old Cornwall Society

Bagpipes, banners, flags and the Cornish language transported back to 1549 those at a service commemorating the Cornish Prayer Book Rebellion.

Alastair Quinnell and Cllr Mike Barbery (Deputy Mayor of Bodmin)

Mayor and Mayoress (Bodmin)

Phil Gale (Bodmin Town Museum)

King Edward VI decreed that all church services were to be conduction in English. But the Cornish would have none of it and, in 1549, wanting to continue to praise God in a language they were familiar with, gathered in Bodmin to take their stand against the decree.

The youngest member of the congregation, with tartan ribbon and St. Piran’s flag pinned to her t-shirt, is keeping part of Cornish tradition alive by learning Cornish.

Danika and her grandmother Kate

The language is distinctive and sounds incredible when spoken as well as Denise and Ray Chubb speak it. They both read in Cornish during the service and a written translation into English was provided.

Denise Chubb, Karin Easton (President of the Federation of Old Cornwall Societies) and Ray Chubb

Banners from Old Cornish Societies across the Duchy were paraded at the start and end of the service to the sound of bagpipes and the service finished with a rousing rendition of ‘Trelawny’.

Merv Davey

To find out about the song’s origins and other events in Bodmin’s past, click here for a helpful summary, written by Merv Davey and published by Cornwall Life August 2022.

For the livestream of the service, beginning at 10.50, click here.

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