One thing that always fascinates me is the names that farmers give their fields. Often passed down through generations and outlined in old deeds, these names provide incites into the past use of fields. Sometimes the history of a field is passed along with the name… sometimes it is lost, leaving mysterious names, often in Cornish. New names are also created as the landscape changes such as ‘top turn in’ (where the road literally turns into the top of the farm) or pole field (where electric poles have been put up). Names are used daily, allowing farmers to coordinate where their livestock is moved and where crops are planted etc. Either old or new, field names are full of intrigue.
When planning our schools workshops we knew we HAD to do something with field names. Planning for this I was lucky enough to meet Pendeen farmer Arthur Matthews. Arthur and his wife spent the morning going through their field names with me and helping me find them all on maps. Arthur even had al the old deeds with the older field names on such as Beagle Orchard filed and the Tubareeth (which he didn’t know the origin of).
Here is the story we made from this:
Using this as a starting point we then worked with all 90 children at Pendeen school. The children all embraced the idea of field names and together we created a large acetate map of the local fields (including Arthur’s fields). Each child had their own field that they had to name, decorate and place on the map.
Photos (from top to bottom):
Children were guided through a simple meditation to help them name and envisage their field.
Children working on their fields using paints.
Authur Matthews came to see what the children had done.
Arthur with some of the local lunch club, enjoying seeing the children at work.
A year 6 pupil finding where her field fits. Nearly finished!
The completed map ( which will look very impressive!) along with other local work will be on display at our final event at the Centre of Pendeen in September this year.