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Tosta is a collaboration project between cultural agents in several minority language communities of Europe’s Atlantic coast, which will also serve as one of the travelling embassies of Donostia / San Sebastian 2016 European Capital of Culture. The project combines the promotion of artistic creation, the celebration of linguistic and cultural diversity and the balanced management of local languages in an international project. The sending out of a ‘cultural cargo’ in the shape of sea containers will be the excuse for mapping out an itinerary that will stop at the participating communities, where a 2-3 day festival will be held to highlight linguistic and cultural diversity in Europe and spread the values of San Sebastian 2016. The word ‘tosta’ means the bench in a boat, and is a word that is present, with small variations, in many minority languages along the European Atlantic coast.
The SERLET project aims to: a) support and promote 7 Regional Languages from 4 Member states (FR, EL, ES, IT) as facilitators for cultural fusioning and mutual intercultural understanding, b) enlarge the cultural attractiveness of 7 European regions through an easy and friendly access to the apprenticeship of their languages, c) Europeanize regional languages and culture, d) contribute at enhancing the recognition of the cultural diversities in Europe, e) provide links among educational institutions and world of labor (specifically tourism section), f) provide innovative material -through modern technology- for smartphones, tablets and interactive website.
'Kernow Matters To Us' (KMTU) utterly condemns the United Kingdom Government for failing to return £150,000 of Cornwall raised taxation in order to support the Cornish language.
It is possible that this move may be in contravention of the spirit of the Charter for Regional and Minority Languages in 2003 and the recognition of the Cornish people as a national minority in April 2014 and their incorporation into the Framework Convention for National Minorities.
This small amount which represents very little in terms of expenditure of taxation should be compared against the cost of each six hour RAF Tornado mission at around £210,000, adding to that cost is the use of four Paveway bombs at £22,000 each and two Brimstone missiles at £105,000 each. If all weapons are fired on an average mission the cost of each RAF mission is therefore £508,000*
Monitoring social media, our members have already noted that the move has outraged many in Cornwall with some threatening to withhold tax and other payments in protest.
Within minutes of the announcement, Dr Jon Mills had established a petition calling for the Westminster Government to reverse their decision. This petition may be found here: https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/128474
It is well known that the Conservatives have little time for Cornwall other than to view it as a holiday resort and second homes venue with an extractive economy. This latest news is just confirmation of that and the widespread condemnation of the decision from all sectors of the community in Cornwall is evidence enough that a huge mistake has been made and that Cornwall continues to lose out under direct Westminster rule.
KMTU which is growing in terms of members at an enormous rate since its stand over Tintagel Castle and the actions and proposed actions of English Heritage there, is further considering a course of action over Westminster's dubious and anti Cornish shortsighted decision.
The full Cornwall Council media release follows:
Cornwall Council condemns Government decision to cut funding for Cornish language
21 April 2016
Cornwall Council has condemned the Government’s decision to cut all its funding for the Cornish language with immediate effect.
The Government has provided up to £150,000 a year to support the Cornish language since it was recognised under the Charter for Regional and Minority Languages in 2003. This grant has been used to support the development of the language, including funding a range of educational activities. At the end of last year the Council was asked by the Government to submit a bid for funding for the current financial year. This bid was supported by MPs, George Eustice and Sarah Newton, as well as Cornish Members of the House of Lords, Cornwall Chamber of Commerce, and the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly LEP.
The Council has now received a formal letter from the Department of Communities and Local Government stating that it was not providing any further funding to support the development of the Cornish language – despite the recognition of the Cornish people as a national minority in April 2014.
Criticising the decision of the Government Julian German, the Council’s Cabinet Member for Economy and Culture, said “The Cornish language is a great source of pride for Cornwall and is part of what makes Cornwall and the Cornish unique. Over the last five years use of the language has increased and this is reflected in street names, signage and on mainstream and social media. Just as importantly, it supports our local and visitor economy as the increase in the use of the language in marketing and tourism has proved.“
“The Government’s decision not to support Cornish with any funding whatsoever goes against the international agreements they have signed up to and that makes no sense at all. Cornwall has received funding from Government for a number of years and all we asked for was to continue at this level of funding.”
“The Prime Minister makes a point of telling us how much he loves Cornwall and the Devolution Deal highlights the Government’s recognition of our unique culture and heritage. However, when it comes to backing those statements up, the Government just doesn’t deliver for Cornwall.”
The decision has also angered Malcolm Bell, Head of Visit Cornwall, who said “The Cornish language is an essential part of the Cornwall brand”.
Cornwall Council will be working with the Cornish language, community and representative organisations such as the Gorseth to discuss how to protect and develop the Cornish language in the future.
Julian German, the Cabinet Member for Economy and Culture, Malcolm Bell, Head of Visit Cornwall and Toby Parkin, President of the Cornwall Chamber of Commerce, are happy to do interviews on this.
· Julian German can be contacted on 07737 183690
· Malcolm Bell can be contacted on 07800 649178
· Toby Parkin can be contacted at 07977 933664
The petition raised by Dr Mills is here: https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/128474
(*) TruePublica.org.uk 8th December 2015 Cost of Britain bombing of Syria
Oll an gwella / All the best
Elected Members of the KMTU Steering Group
Within Britain, the Irish, Welsh, Scottish and Cornish know a love of land which the English, so often, do not experience. Why so? In part, because the first acts of empire were internal, making Ireland, Scotland, Wales and Cornwall into colonies. But in the long run, it is the English who have become ‘internal refugees’ in terms of culture and home-land-love.
We might well criticise what the money has been spent on and who decided how it should be spent (a national assembly for Cornwall democratically elected by the people should have had control in my view), but there is no denying that EU funding has helped Cornwall face the massive underfunding we suffer at the hands of Westminster.
This is a great initiative! Well done to those involved. Now, how about an interactive map for the whole of Cornwall, not forgetting the Duchy of course - probably one of the biggest tax-dodgers of them all.
This kind of populist rhetoric has everything to get the heads nodding at the bar in the local pub, but does it stand up to closer scrutiny?
How very disheartening to see Labour members putting up one language community against another; trying to create unnecessary competition between two minority groups. So much for promoting community cohesion and solidarity! Instead of dividing the Cornish community wouldn't it be much better to celebrate the funding Cornish gets (that Cornwall gets) from central government - funding that we wouldn't otherwise obtain - and then go on to create as large a consensus as possible to demand support for BSL? I think I can safely say the vast majority of MK members would support the teaching of BSL.
In reality Cornwall has been desperately under funded by Westminster for decades. No doubt our overlords in London, irrespective of political alignment, are only too happy to see Cornish people at each others throats in this way - fighting for scraps from the masters table - instead of standing together to demand a better deal.
So lets finish with: Not Cornish or BSL, but rather Cornish and BSL!
As you are aware there is an upcoming Referendum proposed by the Government, to decide on our membership of the European Union.
Mebyon Kernow will be holding a Spring Conference on Saturday 2nd April, and one of the key items for discussion will be MK’s official position on the referendum vote.
The National Executive is presently working on a proposal for the Conference and we are keen the hear the views of party members as we produce this document.
Firstly it would be good to remind ourselves of the section of our Manifesto which directly refers to the European Union.
It is our belief that nations and regions throughout the World should work together, but that does not mean we are not critical of how the European Union is presently constituted.
The Europe of today is one of centralisation, limited democratic control, big business and bureaucracy, and MK – along with many other progressive groups in the European Free Alliance - is campaigning for the increased democratisation of the EU, greater transparency and increased Cornish representation.
Mebyon Kernow believes that sovereignty resides with the people, and that responsibility for decision-making should be retained at the most local level possible. Our compelling task is to build a decentralised Europe on this basic principle, which means we must limit the centralisation of powers both to Europe and to the current state capitals such as London and Paris.
We must create a new Europe that is relevant to the needs of ordinary people.
Since Cornwall was recognised as a European region, it has secured significant and much-needed investment through structural funds, including Objective One and Convergence, but over the last five years the cost of EU membership to the UK taxpayer as a whole has quadrupled, which needs to be addressed as part of future reforms.
As mentioned in the Manifesto we are members of the European Free Alliance, which comprises 45 progressive, nationalist, regionalist and autonomist parties. It is a pro-European party, which endorses the European Union values, namely the principles of liberty, democracy, respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms and the rule of law. Through membership of this grouping both Mebyon Kernow and the People of Cornwall have a stronger and louder representation with Europe, which would be lost should the UK leave the European Union.
In summary, Mebyon Kernow is fundamentally a pro-European Party and considers that membership of the EU provides us with a stronger platform to argue for the rights of Cornwall and its people. But importantly, we must continue to argue that the EU does need radical reform – as set out in the above manifesto segment.
Please take the time to make your feelings and thoughts known to the NEC and Leadership Team.
Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Electoral reform: Party leaders call for pact to achieve alternative voting system after next election | UK Politics | News | The Independent
Now I'm guessing that our 'friends' in Plaid and the SNP forgot about Mebyon Kernow again. MK really needs to make some noise about this if we don't want to hear Plaid and the SNP calling for people to vote Green, LibDem or Labour in the Duchy.
Cornwall Young Left Coalition is a a bi-partisan network of people aged under 30 who identify as left-wing created to ensure that left issues are represented effectively and coherently in Cornwall.
We hope for this group to be a central hub for left-wing activity in Cornwall in order to effectively tackle tory policies which are destroying the county.
Our age group is most able to contribute to activism and hopefully we can apply all our many talents and skills to the cause.
Facebook page here: Cornwall Young Left Coalition.
Give Cornish language and culture the equal status, recognition, respect and prominence in public service broadcasting that it deserves.
We believe the Cornish should have equal status with the other indigenous languages and cultures of Britain.
We want BBC Kernow | Cornwall to sit in it's rightful place alongside BBC Cymru and BBC Alba on the iPlayer.
We want BBC Kernow | Cornwall to sit in it's rightful place alongside BBC Cymru and BBC Alba on the iPlayer.
We want appropriate commissioning and editorial processes to be established within the remit of the BBC Royal Charter from 2017 to develop and grow Cornish language and cultural programming.
Why is this important?
Every culture should have their own voice represented in the world's media, particularly in public service broadcasting.
In 2003 the Cornish language (Kernewek) received official recognition under the European Charter for the Protection of Regional or Minority Languages.
In 2014 the Cornish were granted protected national minority status under the Council of Europe Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities.
This means the Cornish have the same recognition as the Welsh, Scots and Northern Irish.
See: Cornwall Council's BBC Charter Review Consultation Response from the Members Working Group on Cornish Minority Status here / Gwel an Konsel Kernow Keskussulyans Daswel Chartour an Kortyb Gorthyp dhyworth Bagas Oberi an Eseli war Savla Minoryta Kernewek omma
Tweet #BBCKernow #yourBBC
Please sign this petition to pledge your support for the establishment of BBC Kernow.
How it will be delivered
This petition will be delivered in person to Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport.
Sign the petition here: BBC KERNOW
I like this from our partners in Yorkshire First. Could we rustle up something similar for Cornwall? Although, I must say, I'd be tempted to replace the UK parliament with a Cornish one and stop there.
A war-forged dynastic imperial state, which exists only as the remnant of a once-mighty empire, will tend towards a closed, oligarchic and increasingly paranoid form of government, and will pursue policies that favour the maintenance of existing hierarchies of wealth and privilege; being founded in conquest and in the subjugation of the peasantry, it will be bellicose towards others and remorseless in the harrying of its own poor citizens. On the other hand, a nation-state that is born of peace and compact, is founded upon common-right and justice, and is constituted on civic, democratic, principles, will usually pursue policies that promote the common good.
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