'Legend Swamping Cornish History'

News From Kernow Matters To Us

The BBC One Show of 19th February, 2016 with coverage of Tintagel Castle - the full story!



(BBC iPlayer 2:16 onwards refers: http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b070j6rd/the-one-show-19022016)

Tintagel Castle is administered by 'English' Heritage (EH) for Duke Charles, Duke of Cornwall.

Its history predates that of the arrival of the English to these islands and the creation of England.

Kernow Matters to Us (KMTU) members were horrified to be informed that a 2.5 metre tall statue of King Arthur is to be erected and bolted to the castle, that a King Arthur's 'compass' (?) is to be built in the castle, that a Tristan and Iseult 'theme' attraction is to be installed, that a flyover bridge to be set across the site and that this whole programme of 'improvements' has commenced with a carving of of face meant to represent Merlin in the castle cliff.

The object of this all is to draw more fee paying tourists to the site, large parts of which remain excavated and in a fragile state.

At a time when English Heritage have asked visitors to be more careful at Stonehenge, this action at Tintagel has been denounced as desecration. Would this be allowed at Stonehenge, or at Dover Castle? What about something engraved in the white cliffs of Dover?

The word of this tax payer funded vandalism spread swiftly across the media and even drew international interest.

Many recall what has happened at Land's End, Cornwall, itself once a beautiful spot, now a tacky tourist attraction with plastic 'tunnels through time' and 'daleks'.

The Cornwall Archaeological Unit issued an impact assessment wherein 19 out of 28 points in the summary report negative consequences of this 'Disneyfication' of Cornish heritage at the hands of 'English Heritage.

This report was over ruled by the money grabbing quango and all the concerns of the archaeological and historical community cast to one side.

KMTU was contacted by the BBC and hurriedly three volunteer KMTU campaigners went to meet the six strong BBC team and EH team at Tintagel.

The BBC team had come to Cornwall from London the day before and were accommodated at the Camelot Castle Hotel.

The KMTU team spent two hours liaising with the BBC and EH and it was decided that Craig Weatherhill, a much respected Cornish archaeologist, historian, author, speaker of Cornish and Bard, engage in discussion with a representative from EH.

An hour of filming resulted in a few minutes being broadcast and even that being heavily edited with the questions and answers being cleverly manipulated.

300 years of documented indigenous Royal Cornish Kings cast to one side. Facts trampled in the need to generate more tourist pounds.

Three KMTU volunteers gave up their day, drove 160 miles at their own expense in order to make a stand. All three are to be congratulated and in particular Craig.

KMTU members met last year with senior representatives of EH and made it clear that we will not stand idly by and watch our heritage destroyed.

EH left that meeting astonished at their total lack of knowledge of Cornish history.

KMTU has once again written to EH to ask for another meeting. It is also under consideration to directly approach the Duke to ask him and his agents if they are really aware or even care about the history and heritage of one of the oldest groups of people in Britain, the Cornish.

The BBC and EH may chortle and laugh. We are deadly serious! Again we ask, how would they feel if this was occurring at Stonehenge, Dover Castle, the Cliffs of Dover or elsewhere?

BBC iPlayer here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b070j6rd/the-one-show-19022016

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