Gorsedh Kernow Bardic Ceremony celebrates Cornwall’s Celtic spirit

Around one hundred blue-robed bards packed into a school hall to take part in the historic ceremony in Hayle

A dramatic ceremony involving more than a hundred blue robed bards took place in a school hall in Cornwall today, Saturday, September 3, celebrating the Celtic spirit of the Duchy. The highlight of Gorsedh Kernow’s four day Esedhvos Festival, held this year in Hayle, the iconic bardic ceremony was forced to be moved indoors at Hayle Academy due to heavy rain.

Now in its 93rd anniversary year, Gorsedh Kernow was established with the aim of celebrating and promoting Cornwall’s distinctive Celtic culture, and today inaugurated the 19 new bards announced last month in recognition of ‘their outstanding work in serving Cornwall and her distinctive Celtic identity.’

Ahead of the festival, Hayle’s Mayor, Anne-Marie Rance, said: “It is an honour and a privilege for Hayle to host Gorsedh Kernow this year. Hayle has strong historic links with the Gorsedh and some of its founders, who also founded the Hayle Old Cornwall Society. They celebrate their centenary next year, so it is fitting that the Gorsedh is being held here.”

Grand Bard Pol Hodge, Mab Stenak Veur commented: “One of the benefits of Gorsedh Kernow moving around Cornwall is the chance to spotlight a different town and area each September, giving us the opportunity to celebrate the rich variety of our culture.”

On Sunday, the final day of the festival, there is a chance for people to try their hand at the Cornish language in the “Blas a Gernewek” taste of Cornish session being held at Penpol School and led by Will Coleman from Golden Tree. A heritage walk around Hayle completes the morning, led by John Pollard Kampyer A’gan Ertach and finally Evensong in the Cornish language will be held at 3pm at Phillack Church.

Cornwall Live