‘Cornish Tommies’ project awarded National Lottery funding

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National Lottery funding for Creative Kernow’s Project “From War to Peace – Young Cornish Students Research A Cornish Tommy’s Return” to mark First World War Centenary.

We are thrilled to share that Creative Kernow has received a National Lottery grant of £9,000 for our new C Fylm project entitled ‘From War to Peace – Young Cornish Students Research A Cornish Tommy’s Return’. This project’s primary task will be to produce a short film and digital resources about Cornwall in and after the First World War. Awarded through the Heritage Lottery Fund’s First World War ‘Then and Now’ programme, the project will focus on presenting a true story of a Cornish mining family caught up in the war.

To celebrate the Centenary of Armistice Day, we have commissioned a young student team and school and college children to get involved in telling and learning about these stories. The project will enable local people throughout Cornwall to come together to preserve the memories and heritage of Cornish families who lived through the First World War.

Volunteers in partner organisations across Cornwall will research the story using photographs, film, newspaper clippings, documents, letters and photos of keepsakes, as well as neighbours memories passed down to help them build a clear picture of what an 18 year old recruit’s life and his return home was really like. The story will be captured in a short film (working title “Cornish Tommies”) produced by a production team composed of Falmouth University Undergraduate students. They will recruit a further 30 school and college student volunteers from Bodmin College, Truro & Penwith College. The film will be screening in village halls, community centres, schools and universities.

Commenting on the award, Tim Smithies Project Director of C Fylm said:

“We’re delighted that we’ve received this support thanks to National Lottery players. We are looking forward to engaging a wide variety of local people in learning about the lives of Cornish people in the First World War and its aftermath, and how their lives connect so closely  to our  lives today for example in the  musical and cultural events we still enjoy.”

If you would like to volunteer to take part or learn new skills in film production at workshops please contact tim@carntocove.org.uk with WW1 in the subject line.

With help from professionals, archivists, curators, and experts, the information gathered will be filmed and resources will be shared online. The film and the online presence will allow the public to discuss, contribute, share and research information about the life in training, on the front, in reserve and in hospital and in the peace that followed.

As Armistice Day approaches there will be opportunities for the public and school children to see the short film produced as part of a World War 1 series of short and feature screenings across Cornwall in community venues in all the mining districts of Cornwall from 10th October onwards – look out for information at www.cfylm.co.uk

Nerys Watts, Head of HLF South West, said:

“The impact of the First World War was far reaching, touching and shaping every corner of the UK and beyond. Thanks to National Lottery players, communities like those involved in ‘A Cornish Tommy’s Return’ are exploring the continuing legacy of this conflict and enabling people of all ages to broaden their understanding of how it has shaped our modern world.”

To join the conversation on social media please use #CornishTommies and keep an eye out on the C Fylm website for further updates!