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Chairman's blog

30 September

After a hectic but enjoyable summer I have found the time to update my blog and apologies to those who have found that the news has been lacking.

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I am delighted to inform you that we have chosen ‘Children as Carers’ as the Chairman’s charity.

Many things that we take for granted and see as perfectly normal are through necessity totally alien to many children.  Children who think it quite normal to be caring for an adult or live in a household where their wishes have to come second.  Hundreds of children acting as unpaid carers here in Cornwall go about daily routines that save us all a great deal of money and anguish.

These children are all too often making sacrifices that will impact on their ability to enjoy their childhood in a normal way or even worse their caring roles are impacting on their education, health and future prospects.

With this in mind we have decided to try and alleviate, in some way, some of the hardship endured by these young carers.  With the money raised we can enable them to participate in ‘out of school activities’.  Enjoy a short break or indulge in a hobby that is at present out of reach, for example by purchasing a musical instrument.

Maybe ideas will come from them once they are aware that help is at hand and there are people who really do want to improve the quality of their lives.  To just know that you are not alone and that there are people out there who care about you really can make a difference.

I sincerely do hope that you will all get behind this brilliant cause and support the Chairman’s Charity.

You may contact me by e-mail:  johnwood@cornwall.gov.uk

 

Last Wednesday evening I attended a ‘must see’ theatrical performance at Heligan Gardens near Mevagissey.  Read on and don’t be put off, it was not outside and open to the elements, it was not in a draughty marquee, it was in a custom built temporary structure which was warm, well insulated and very comfortable.

That said I wouldn’t have minded if I had been uncomfortable and cold.  The performance was so gripping and of such a high standard that we were soon captivated by all that was going on.

Maybe the title of the performance is a little off putting ‘Dead Dog in a Suitcase’ but don’t be.  The play is of such significance to all who really do care about now and the future be it theirs or their children’s and beyond.

Do research the Kneehigh theatre group if you don’t know them.

Their ethical and caring ethos combined with a joyful challenging anarchy makes everyone who witnesses their performance stop and reflect if only for a moment.

The director Mike Shepherd, who once taught in Mevagissey before starting Kneehigh in 1980, comes from a background of art and drama.  His father taught drama in Poltair, St Austell.  Cornwall is very much a part of Mike - he is passionate about our young people and how important it is for them all to be given hope and the opportunity to live in and be a part of the Duchy.

The cast was amazing with such a talented, skilled and versatile group of performers but I am not going to single out any individual.  Their ability to perform in a variety of disciplines and with such energy and enthusiasm must have been very inspirational to the volunteers and thanks must go to them for their hard work.

Kneehigh are so keen to inspire and encourage young people that they continue to give away free tickets where applicable.  If in some way, no matter how small, you can help them to sustain and nurture theatre at a local level in Cornwall then do, because with Kneehigh we are all winners.

You may contact me by e-mail:  johnwood@cornwall.gov.uk

August was a very busy month despite many people being on holiday - sadly the weather for the most part was not very encouraging. However when it really mattered we had some fine spells so all was well.

The highlight of the month was most definitely the Tall Ships Event in Falmouth.

To say that is was a truly splendid occasion would be an understatement.  It was an event that went way beyond a sailing race for historic Tall Ships. It was an opportunity for the town to once again demonstrate that it really does know how to put on a festival of culture, art, music, performing arts and so much more.

The sun shone but a few clouds added to the backdrop which helped to make photographs of the tall ships far more interesting. A light breeze added to the setting and made a perfect Sunday for the parade of sail and the start of the race.

I would like to add my thanks and congratulations to all concerned with making the four days such a resounding success. I do understand that two years of preparation and too many people to thank here were involved. However I must make a special vote of thanks to the 300 volunteers who gave freely of their time and energy ensuring that the event was well staffed.

Cornwall as a whole benefits from these showcase events which are a terrific boost to our economy. They also give the local residents the opportunity to savour and enjoy just what is so special about living in this wonderful Duchy.

You may contact me by e-mail:  johnwood@cornwall.gov.uk

Chairman

Room 3E:01,
County Hall
Treyew Road
Truro
TR1 3AY