School children inspired by local landscape stories

Posted on: 18th August 2016 No Comments

If you have never visited Carn Grey, just outside the village of Trethurgy in the Clay Country, then we strongly advise you do! Here, an ancient rock perches on the edge of a disused granite quarry, providing the most amazing 360 degree views of the landscape, which… as all landscapes are… is layered with wonderful stories.

Landscapes provide a valuable way of triggering memories, and it has been a real privilege to hear so many whilst stood on top of Carn Grey Rock. We have spent the last few months recording these memories and editing them into a series of digital stories.

Armed with these digital stories, and our suitcase of course, we recently delivered workshops to children from Carclaze Academy and Luxulyan Primary School. Playing the digital stories in the classroom gave us an engaging and a times humorous starting point for exploring the areas rich heritage. Indeed you can learn a great deal from listening to stories, without even realising it.

To further engrain these stories, children worked together to transform them into white clay scenes. They also enjoyed playing with raw and refined china clay, resulting in some rather white hands!

Playing with China Clay

Playing with China Clay

Following the workshop in the classroom, children were able to take their own visit to Carn Grey rock. Venturing to the top of the rock, children were stunned by the views and had great fun placing the stories they had heard to the locations they encountered. There was where Kath and Marj had their picnic, lets play hard-heads! There was where they extracted granite, lets pretend we are working in a quarry! That’s where Colin was stuck in his digger half way up the sand burra and hit by lightening! That’s Baal pit where an episode of Dr.Who was filmed… so many stories all within this landscape.

Heading even higher to the top of the nearest burra, children created layered footsteps, with white pen on sheets of acetate, making their own footprint of their time up Carn Grey. ‘Grose-Henge’ (as it’s locally known) also made a good spot for our picnic lunch, with large blocks of granite to perch on.

The clay plaque stories and footsteps will become part of the forthcoming exhibition- ‘Landscapes are Layered with Stories- A View from Carn Grey Rock’ at Wheal Martyn Museum from September 10th to October 13th 2016. Read more about this event here.

This work is part of the ‘Landmark Travels- Our past in a suitcase’ project in partnership with the Institute of Cornish Studies and Cornwall Heritage Trust, and funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and Cornwall Heritage Trust.

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