The Demise and Resurgence of the Cornish Language

With only a very small percentage of Cornish men and women speaking Cornish today, whatever, happened to our true Celtic tongue, a language that was once spoken throughout the whole of Cornwall?

Signs of it’s existence is evident everywhere you travel in our beautiful county.  For example, when you come to stay in our family’s luxury holiday cottages in Trelash, the name of the hamlet contains the prefix ‘Tre’ with a Cornish meaning of a settlement or homestead.  Given that the oldest buildings in the hamlet are sited around a farm in Trelash it is most probable that ‘Trelash’ was so called because of the farm (a homestead).

A luxury cottage Cornwall. The Cottage is one of two Visit England 5 star gold luxury cottages Cornwall available from Luxury Cornwall Holiday Cottages. The Cottage is dog friendly cottage and family friendly cottage

Interestingly, the Cornish language is an ancient Celtic tongue with ties to the Welsh and Breton language of Brittany, France. In fact the Celts migrated to Britain from Europe over 3,000 years ago, bringing their language with them. By 1200 years ago 40,000 Cornish people were reported to be speaking Cornish. The Cornish language survived as the main language spoken throughout Cornwall until the Tudor period when Cornwall was taken over by the British Empire. Pressure from the English for all Cornish men and women to speak English, meant that by the mid 1600’s the Cornish language was only spoken in the far reaches of Cornwall, near the Lizard and west of Penwith.

The last recorded person known to speak Cornish fluently was a woman called Dolly Pentreath (1680–1777) who lived in Mousehole. Reputedly her last words spoken were ‘Me ne vidn cewsel Sawznek!’ (‘I don’t want to speak English!’). However, it is believed that quite a few Mousehole residents continued to speak Cornish after Dolly’s death.

The demise of the Cornish language was inevitable, but in 1904 a Celtic scholar by the name of Henry Jenner (1848 – 1934), a cultural activist, wrote and got published a Cornish Language handbook which saw the revival of Cornish as a spoken language.

Since then the number of people learning and using the Cornish language has increased substantially and a significant milestone in its revival was the official recognition of Cornish as a minority language in 2002 under the Council of Europe’s Charter for Regional or Minority Languages.

Incredibly, today, Cornish is one of the fastest growing languages in the world. This has been helped considerably by Cornish being set as an optional curriculum subject in schools; an option that has been taken up by an ever increasing amount of schools. 2010 saw the first bilingual pre-school open in Pool. Many other pre-school, playgroups, primary and secondary schools have followed suit, offering children the opportunity to learn Cornish.

In the past few years the introduction of cable internet has seen a dramatic rise in the number of businesses moving to/setting up in Cornwall. Many of these have recognised the increasing interest we all have in our surroundings and our inner desire to harness a sense of belonging by embracing the use of the Cornish language in their marketing and publicity. For example, Polgoon Vineyard has chosen Cornish branding by naming many of their products in Cornish. National companies such as Weatherspoons have introduced bilingual signage in their Cornish pubs and naming them in Cornish such as the “Try Dowr” (Three Rivers) in Truro and “Chapel an Gansblydhen” (Centenary Chapel) in Bodmin.

In 2009 Cornwall Council introduced a policy of using the Cornish language where possible. Visible results of this policy include bilingual street signage appearing across Cornwall, installed as and when new or replacement signs are needed.

Some useful words and phrases to help you understand your surroundings when you are visiting our beautiful county include:

  • Tre as in Trelash and many more Cornish place names means a settlement or homestead.
  • Pol as in Polzeath, means a pool, pond, lake or well
  • Pen as in Pentire Point means a headland or head
  • Wheal as in Wheal Jane means a mine, whereas Bal as in Baldhu means a mine working.
  • Porth (Port) as in Port Isaac means a bay, port or harbour.
  • Towan as in Porthtowan meaning sand dunes.
  • Perran as in Perranporth is named after St Piran/St Perran, the Patron Saint of Tinners and the national saint of Cornwall, hence the St Piran Flag
  • Lan as in Lanhydrock or Lanteglos means a sacred enclosure such as a church, monastery.
  • Bos/Bod as in Bodmin or Boscastle means a home or dwelling.

Some Cornish phrases you might see on your travels:

a’gas Dynnergh – Welcome to …
Gwrys yn Kernow – Made in Cornwall
Onan hag Oll – One and All
Kernow Bys Vykken – Cornwall forever

So while you enjoy your travels around North Cornwall look closely and you will notice names of villages and hamlets beginning with Tre, Pol and Pen.

“ By Tre, Pol and Pen shall ye know all Cornishmen”

Happy holidays.

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The RBS 6 Nations Rugby Should Really Include Cornwall!

Cornwall 5 times winners RBS 6 Nations Rugby

Cornwall 5 times winners RBS 6 Nations Rugby

Is the RBS 6 Nations Rugby ready for Cornwall!!

A little known fact about Cornwall is that as a county we are rugby mad!  To many locals, Cornwall should really be a nation in its own right….a discussion for another day. But if we were a nation, then our brilliant Rugby Union team could certainly give the other RBS 6 Nations a run for The Cup.

Our first Cornwall rugby union team was formed way back in 1883!  Since then the Cornwall County team has won the Bill Beaumont Cup (County Championship) 5 times. The first in 1908 at the Recreation Ground, Redruth, beating Durham City 17-3.

Since 1984 all County Championship games have been played at Twickenham Stadium, the home of English Rugby.  When Cornwall won the County Championship at here in 1991, 50,000 supporters travelled to watch their team beat Yorkshire 29-20. The Independent newspaper claimed them to be the ‘Best Supporters’ in any sport that year.

Since then Cornwall has won the championship in 1999 (beating Gloucestershire 25-15), in 2015 beating Lancashire 18-13 and again in 2016 with a monumental win over Cheshire, 35-13 bringing the Bill Beaumont Cup back to Cornwall yet again.

Wherever Cornwall play “Trelawney” is sung loud and clear at the side lines encouraging each and every player to perform their very best in their distinctive yellow and black kit, representing the ancient kings of Cornwall.

Cornish rugby has a great history of players playing at international level including Phil Vickery, Trevor Woodman, Brian ‘Stack’ Stevens, Graham Dawe, as well as Andy Reed who has represented Scotland and the Lions, and many others.

So, if we could just extend the RBS 6 Nations Rugby tournament to 7 Nations to include Cornwall, surely we could give England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland, France and Italy a competitive game, not to mention a taste of our unique Cornish support.

More information about our Cornwall Rugby Union team

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Hot New Film Starring David Beckham

Tintagel Castle a local attraction 20 mins from our luxury holiday cottages in Trelash from Luxury Cornwall Holiday Cottages

Tintagel Castle a local attraction 20 mins from our luxury holiday cottages in Trelash

Hot New Film Starring David Beckham: King Arthur: Legend of the Sword.  Yes, I do mean the David Beckham! But you have to wait until 24th March 2017 to spot Mr Beckham in this new, action packed film: King Arthur: Legend of the Sword. The film, which has been directed by Guy Ritchie, features a star cast including Charlie Hunman in the title role alongside Jude Law and David Beckham among others.

With the last of the current and brilliant Cornwall based Poldark series leaving our screens last Sunday, King Arthur fever looks set to take over. The film relives the classic story of the legendary British King’s rise to power. From joining the rebellion and meeting Guinevere to uniting the British people to defeat Vortigern, the dictator who murdered Arthur’s parents and stole his crown.

The legend tells how King Arthur was conceived at Tintagel Castle, an iconic clifftop castle ruin in North Cornwall, just 20mins drive from our luxury holiday cottages in Trelash.

This summer (2106) a project was undertaken to learn more about Tintagel’s past. Trenches were dug in two previously un-excavated terrace areas in the hope of finding out more about how the people of Tintagel lived in the Post-Roman period from 5th to 7th centuries AD.  Throughout the excavation samples of soil, ceramics, glass, iron, bone and molluscs were collected and are now undergoing analysis. Excavations will continue in Summer 2017.

At a new exhibition launched in 2015, you can view for the first time, some of the finds from Tintagel Castle. The exhibition explores how legend and reality have uniquely combined to shape Tintagel through the ages.

Whilst visiting Tintagel Castle, take time to walk down on to the beach where, close to Merlin’s Cave, you will find a discreet carved face representing Merlin, who has been associated with the site since the 12th century.  Another interesting feature is an 8ft bronze sculpture inspired by the legend of King Arthur created by artist Rubin Eynon, Gallos (meaning power in Cornish).

To round off your visit and to re-energise before walking back from the cliff top castle, over the famous footbridge, to Tintagel rest a while and take refreshment in the recently refurbished Beach Café.

Just a note of warning; personally, I have not found the walk out to the castle ruin to be suitable for anyone with walking disabilities or young families with pushchairs.

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19 Local Dog Friendly Beaches

Dog Friendly beaches near this holiday cottage, The Cottage, is a luxury Dog Friendly Holiday Cottage Cornwall from Luxury Cornwall Holiday Cottages keyholder to two Visit England 5 star gold luxury cottages Cornwall

Book our cottages and enjoy all year round access to dog friendly beaches

As the Autumn sets in and October arrives, our wonderful North Cornwall beaches become totally dog friendly. From Easter onwards during the summer months some, not all, Cornish beaches apply dog walking restrictions, which means having to plan ahead when taking your four-legged friends to the beach.

This all changes annually, come 1st October, when you can arrive at any beach and know that your dog is welcome.  To help plan your next holiday to either of our luxury Cornwall holiday cottages in Trelash, North Cornwall I have listed our favourite local dog friendly beaches below.  With a minimum 19 local dog friendly beaches within close proximity to our 5 star gold awarded luxury cottages in Cornwall, and with many of them being dog friendly all year round, The Cottage and Meadowview Cottage are perfect year round holiday cottages.

All year round dog friendly beaches:

Northcott Mouth
Stanbury Mouth
Sandymouth Beach
Summerleaze beach, Bude (leads in summer)
Widemouth Bay (south side, known as Black Rock)
Millook Haven
Trebarwith Strand
Bossiney Cove
Port Isaac
Daymer Bay

Seasonal access (ie between 1st October and Easter Day)

Stanbury Mouth Beach North of Bude
Duckpool North of Bude, a wild yet romantic cove with a westerly facing beach
Crooklets, Bude
Widemouth Bay
Crackington Haven
Port Gaverne
Port Quin
Lundy Bay between Polzeath and Padstow, accessible at low tide
Epphaven Cove near Padstow, accessible at low tide

For full information about our choice of two independent luxury holiday cottages in North Cornwall see www.luxurycornwallholidaycottages.co.uk

 

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Cornwall and Bude British Travel Awards

Luxury cottage Cornwall 5 star GOLD Luxury Cottages Cornwall near Bude Natural Sea Pool from Luxury Cornwall Holiday Cottages

Bude open air swimming pool – a great coastal attraction

Cornwall and Bude were both winners of The British Travel Awards. To us locals it comes as no surprise that our beautiful home county of Cornwall and the seaside town of Bude in North Cornwall, just 20 minutes drive from our luxury holiday cottages, both won awards in the British Travel Awards November 2015.

Best UK Holiday Destination/County was awarded to Cornwall for the seventh year in a row. Bude, which has become an updated, on trend coastal resort, was voted the Best Coastal Resort in the UK, for the first time.

Cornwall has long been popular with holiday makers from within the UK and much further afield. With star attractions like The Eden Project holding on to the Gold trophy for Best UK Leisure Attraction, ahead of Legoland at Windsor and Longleat Safari Park, and many more fabulous family friendly attractions, it is no surprise that Cornwall received Best UK Holiday County yet again.

With its first ever Best Coastal Resort award, at last Bude has the recognition it so rightly deserves. Runners up were Bournemouth and Woolacombe.   Everyone staying at our family run 5-star GOLD holiday cottages, both with 100% Cleanliness records, are perfectly positioned to easily explore the beautiful North Cornwall coast, countryside, award-winning beaches and of course, Bude.  With easy access to the main arterial road through Cornwall, the A30, guests are no more than a one hour drive from Cornwall’s major attraction at The Eden Project.

Neighbouring Devon came in third behind Northumberland, which means that when staying at our family friendly and dog friendly luxury holiday cottages in North Cornwall you can experience the best of both worlds; staying in Cornwall, minutes from Bude and 15 mins from the border into Devon.

“We couldn’t be more delighted with this award,” said Mark Hibbard, tourism officer and a director of Bude Area Tourist Board. “All the vision and local investment that is going into the Bude area – creating new places to eat, places to stay and exciting things to do for visitors to Bude, is clearly appealing to day visitors and holiday visitors alike.

“The fact that this award is voted for by visitors makes it all the more special. We represent many Bude tourism businesses working together to provide a thriving and continually improving visitor destination – we look forward to welcoming even more visitors in 2016.”

The British Travel Awards is the largest awards programme in the UK created to reward the best companies in travel. Categories span all types of holiday experience from transport and accommodation to customer service and the winners are decided by public vote. The 2015 edition of the British Travel Awards attracted 1 million votes from over 250,000 voters confirming its standing as the largest consumer voted awards in any industry, not just travel.

Luxury Cornwall Holiday Cottages can be viewed at www.luxurycornwallholidaycottages.co.uk

 

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Walking Brown Willy the Highest Point in Cornwall

Bodmin Moor: home to Brown Willy and Roughor in North Cornwall close to Luxury Cornwall Holiday Cottages 10 mins from our luxury Cornwall holiday cottages, luxury cottages Cornwall

Bodmin Moor: home to Brown Willy and Roughor in North Cornwall

Only 15 mins drive from our luxury holiday Cottages in North Cornwall is the highest point in Cornwall known as Brown Willy. For centuries people have roamed and lived on the moors eking a living from the land.   Others have benefitted from fabulous views taken at the top of the tor having trod the public right of way to Brown Willy on Bodmin Moor, one of the most iconic and rugged spots in the South West of Britain.

On the face of it Brown Willy does not conjure up romance and poems, however, the name derives from the Cornish words Bronn Wennili, meaning “hill of swallows”.   At the summit it features two manmade cairns offering far reaching views across much of Cornwall. Looking down from the tor, remnants of Medieval field patterns and old settlements are still visible.   There are also pockets of woodland which provide a habitat for woodcock and red, fallow and roe deer.

Earlier this month the present private owners announced their planned departure from Brown Willy to start a new life in New Zealand, necessitating the sale of the tor and the extensive 1,225-acre lot of land and a traditional Cornish granite farmhouse, reminiscent of Ross Poldark’s house in the popular Poldark TV drama, that comes with it. All for £2.8m

Fortunately, for guests staying at the luxury holiday cottages in Trelash, the sale of Brown Willy and its surrounding land will not affect the public right of way to the tor. Owners of The Cottage, Jacqueline Bolt and Meadowview Cottage, Debbie Bolt highly recommended to their guests a tramp over the moors to the tor or, to Brown Willy’s neighbouring tor, Rough Tor.  For some, tracing the trail may be too challenging during hot summer days, however, trekked out of season in the Spring or Autumn the walk can be particularly rewarding with few other walkers and cooler days.

The luxury holiday cottages can be viewed at www.luxurycornwallholidaycottages.co.uk

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luxury beach holiday Cornwall. Beautiful sandy beaches only 17 minutes from our dog friendly and family friendly holiday cottages in North Cornwall from Luxury Cornwall Holiday Cottages

Cornwall Hosts a Top 20 Best British Beach

Cornwall plays host to at least one of the top 20 best beaches featured by World Travel Guide. There has never been a better time for a Great British beach holiday. So grab your bucket and spade, kids, wellies, your four-legged best friend and head to the South West peninsula for a luxury beach holiday Cornwall.

Rated best for surfing, strolling and summer holidaying, Widemouth Bay, near Bude, Cornwall, a long time favourite of local residents, is a striking expanse of rugged North Cornwall coastline. As you approach the bay from either end of Marine Drive, Widemouth Bay and the connecting southerly beach of Black Rock, reach out in front as far as the eye can see.

Lying on the Atlantic coast the water might be a little chilly even on the hottest day, but there has never been a better time to enjoy our British beaches, particularly Widemouth Bay, that has the endorsement of the Marine Conservation Society (MSC).

Once a haven for smugglers, Widemouth Bay now has a far wider appeal. During the summer the sandy beach attracts swimmers, sunbathers and strollers throughout the day and local fishermen, dog walkers (on the south Black Rock beach only until October), joggers and families enjoying an early evening BBQ during late afternoons and balmy evenings. The winter months bring pounding Atlantic surf, luring surfers, hardy outdoors types and locals who never tire of watching the thundering waves crashing onto the beach during high winds and storms.

Widemouth Bay can be found on Marine Drive, Widemouth Bay, Bude EX23 0AW just 10.8 miles (19 mins drive) from our luxury 5 star GOLD awarded cottages by Quality in Tourism for Visit England. Family owned and run, both holiday cottages provide excellent family friendly and dog friendly holiday accommodation of the highest level. Both cottages also enjoy a 100% Cleanliness records by QIT for Visit England, so you can be assured of a high standard of accommodation and customer service on booking your holiday.

Luxury Cornwall Holiday Cottages provides two luxury cottages in North Cornwall for your luxury beach holiday Cornwall.

 

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Visit England 5 star Gold Award

5 star Gold awards from Visit England (Quality in Tourism) for Luxury Cottages Cornwall available through Luxury Cornwall Holiday CottagesGREAT NEWS for those seeking exclusive, #luxury #self-catering #accommodation, in #Cornwall.  On July 22nd 2016 The Cottage received the highest accolade of a 5-STAR GOLD award for accommodation by Visit England (Quality in Tourism) PLUS a 100% CERTIFICATION FOR CLEANLINESS.

This is particularly important for discerning travellers looking for luxury dog-friendly accommodation where you can feel completely comfortable bringing your very young children.

The Cottage is not only a favourite with dog owners, but also with parents with babes-in-arms and a dog who just want to get away for a stress-free break. Up to 3 infants under 3-years old can be comfortably accommodated at no extra charge.

This is the first assessment The Cottage has undergone by Visit England (Quality in Tourism).  II have to say, not knowing what to expect was the worst part.  It turned out that the inspector was really friendly but I was unable to relax until we finally sat down for the all important chat about how The Cottage faired on the Visit England marking system. With great relief, The Cottage really did well, winning 5 stars for the high level of accommodation and customer service provided, with an additional 100% score for cleanliness.  What more could I have hope for?

The Cottage has two regular housekeepers who spend on average 5-hours each cleaning and tidying The Cottage before our next guests are due to arrive. They are very thorough, working to my philosophy that every guest who visits The Cottage feels as if they are the first guests to stay.

A BIG THANK YOU to my wonderful housekeepers for their commitment to delivering a sparkling holiday home that feels special as soon as you step through the door.

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Dog Friendly Holiday

Taking a UK Dog Friendly Holiday?

Britain is undoubtedly dog friendly, and we are renowned for being a crazy dog nation. A notion borne out by the fact we have a staggering doggy population of around 8.5 million dogs living with us in the UK. Many of us want to take our canine best friend(s) on a dog friendly holiday with us.  If you are seeking a luxury holiday home that welcomes both dogs and children, your search could well be over.

Dog Friendly Holiday Cottage in North Cornwall

My holiday cottage, The Cottage, in North Cornwall is dog-friendly, and welcomes dogs on a regular basis over its threshold.   I truly believe everyone who has brought their canine best friend(s) on holiday with them to The Cottage have been very considerate owners. But, with the pressure of loading up a vehicle with all the family’s holiday paraphernalia, it can be easy to forget your dog’s most basic requirements whilst travelling in a confined space for long hours in a hot car. So, please, if you are about to set out on a long motorway journey to your dream holiday destination, please take one or two moments to check your pooch will be comfortable and stress free.

Some Useful Dog Friendly Holiday Travelling Tips include:

  • Do not feed your dog within 2 hours of the journey.
  • Ensure your dog is comfortable with the space he/she will be allotted to travel in within your vehicle. If you have a crate this can be very useful to well define your dog’s space.
  • Make absolutely sure you have water readily available by using an anti-spill water bowl. Most importantly ensure you carry fresh water for refills, just in case you should suffer a motor-way hold-up.
  • Ensure plenty of fresh air is available and make regular stops along your journey for toilet breaks and leg stretching. For you, your family and your dog!
  • Ensure your dog’s ID tag information is up to date and that the tag is secured tightly to its collar.
  • Familiarise yourself with the country-code dog etiquette before you leave home. Chasing sheep and worse still killing sheep can result in your dog being legally shot by a farmer.

Packing list – the Essentials for your Dog Friendly Holiday

  • Seat belt clip for car travel
  • Bowl for water
  • Medication for travel sickness
  • Any other necessary medication
  • Old blanket to cover a sofa at your holiday accommodation
  • Towel(s) for drying your dog after a walk or a visit to the beach
  • Dog food (especially for fussy or sensitive dogs)
  • Bags to clean up after your dog

You can find a Pet-Etiquette guidance page on my website by clicking here:

 

 

 

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Dog Friendly Britain

Dog Friendly beaches in North Cornwall 10 minutes from The Cottage North Cornwall

Dog Friendly Beaches in North Cornwall

Bringing your dog to Dog Friendly Britain?

Rubi my beautiful Hungarian Vizsla enjoying a dog-friendly holiday at The Cottage Trelash, at luxury Cornwall holiday cottages outside The Cottage a luxury cottage Cornwall

Rubi my beautiful Hungarian Vizsla enjoying a dog-friendly holiday at The Cottage Trelash, at luxury Cornwall holiday cottages

It is so much easier now to travel with our dogs. England is a very dog-friendly country and travelling by car throughout Europe with your canine best friend is so simple. I can vouch for this having recently travelled with my Hungarian Vizsla on a long drive through France and Spain before arriving in Southern most part of Portugal. It was an extensive journey made much easier by the fond reception Rubi received wherever we went and she was particularly made very welcome in the dog-friendly hotels we chose.

If you are planning a trip to England, Scotland or Wales with your dog, there are a few items you need to take care of before you leave home for a stress-free and enjoyable journey.

 

Visit Britain’s advice as to what your pet will need before entering Britain from an EU country includes:

  1. A microchip with identification number
  2.  Rabies vaccination
  3. Pet passportobtainable from your vet
  4. Tapeworm treatmentmust be given between 1 and 5 days before travelling to Britain. The treatment is not necessary if you travel from Finland, Ireland, Malta or Norway

Please be aware that additional rules apply if more than five dogs are being brought into Britain or if you are travelling from a non-EU country.

Banned Breeds

Some dogs are strictly not allowed to enter the UK. The ban applies not only to dogs of specific breeds, but also to dogs with similar appearances. Please abide with these ruling to avoid the heavy penalties that you may incur otherwise. If you own one of the following breeds or similar dogs please take note;

  • Pitbull Terrier
  • Japanese Tosa
  • Dogo Argentino
  • Fila Brasileiro

Self-catering Accommodation

It is always wise to try and book your accommodation ahead of your planned journey, ensuring you have somewhere lovely to stay and with the reassurance that the accommodation welcomes dogs.   Britain is a very dog-friendly country but not all self-catering holiday homes are dog-friendly and welcome dogs through their doors, some may restrict certain breeds, so it is always a good idea to check before arriving on the door-step.

At The Cottage, available through the Luxury Cornwall Holiday Cottages website www.luxurycornwallholidaycottages.co.uk or their Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/luxurycottagescornwall/ one or two dogs are very welcome to bring their well behaved human families.

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