We have done much to teach ourselves, with our own resident expertise, what is around and under us, the better to know it, care for it, and enable our neighbours, peers and visitors to do the same. And the most crucial lesson – we taught ourselves to look after each other.
a sense of common purpose
Working together on a big complicated programme with lots of different people, meeting needs of visitors and community members and businesses, from one woman bands to a big organisation like the National Trust, brings a lot of learning. Throw in a global crisis, the sort that actually completely shuts down the very businesses and communities the programme is working with, is like PhD level of learning. So we did. And that continues. We have learned much. We continue to learn, and to be honest, that bit never changes. When it comes to resilience, and change, and collaboration, if you’re doing it right, you’re learning good stuff every day. It’s about listening as much as doing.
We started off face to face, like everyone did. And we got as far as fabulous sessions on heritage, minings, flora and fauna, sustainable business practice, sustainable transport, and our vistor charter … and of course we got Keith, our resident Tin Coast illustrator, to draw *everything* we discussed, as an aide memoire, a catalyst for thought, an expression of what we love and why.
And then everything changed. Our last face to face session was in a local art gallery, learning about our geology. So we learned to continue learning, online.
So much to learn from our own miners: men and women who worked this land, left this land to take their expertise to other continents, came back and set up businesses here. Geevor Mine is a community asset run by staff and volunteers involved in multiple ways in that extraordinary time in our place’s history; and with stories to share beyond compare. And we asked them to share them.
You can hear more about those stories here, too.
We brought in practising green businesses from the West of Cornwall who have been working on their sustainable practice for years, and keen to share – and treasure troves of advice were handed round and built into the collective imagination and enthusiasm for keeping this place healthy, thriving and beautiful.
There’s more to the ground we walk on than almost anyone realises; more geology than the imagination can contain; more archeology than anywhere in the UK. Much to learn; much to revel in. Much to know, to pass onto our visitors so they can love this place, too.
And when it comes to wildlife: land, sea, and air teems with life. Working with local experts, and guides, our communities and businesses learned what is under our noses, over our heads and beneath our feet, so our businesses and lives and communities, can protect it, and our words, and actions, can encourage our visitors to do the same.