A Good Read with Gorsedh Kernow

Imagine being in a room with some of the best new books about Cornwall just waiting for you to pick them up and start reading. A reader’s dream, especially if you love anything with a Cornish theme, and you don’t have to buy them all first.

Thanks to Gorsedh Kernow’s annual Holyer an Gof publishers’ awards this is exactly what happens each year when a panel of over 40 readers, drawn mainly from the Gorsedh’s College of Bards and others with particular expertise, meet together at Kresen Kernow, Redruth to make their selection from an impressive choice of new publications ranging from a new interpretation of an ancient text through to the latest novel to hit the bookshelves.

Awards Holyer an Gof

“With such a rich cultural and artistic tradition in Cornwall, there is never a shortage of material waiting to be published,” said Holyer an Gof co-organiser Rael Harvey, a Cornish language Bard with a passion for books and reading.

“Each year the number of books submitted by publishers in Cornwall and beyond increases from the previous year,” she said “and readers are working their way through this years’ entries of over 100 Each year over 70 books are submitted by publishers from Cornwall and beyond, read and evaluated by a panel of Readers (drawn mainly from Bards of the Cornish Gorsedh and others with particular expertise), and the winning entries are announced at a Presentation Evening held at Waterstones Bookshop in Truro. volumes.”

Readers for Holyer an Gof

“Building on the success of the awards is vital,” said Mrs Harvey, “and this year, with the help of Cornwall Council and our wonderful sponsor Waterstones in Truro, we are organising our first ever Holyer an Gof Book Fair, to be held on Sunday 29th June at Cornwall Council Offices in Truro.”
“We can promise you some of the best Cornwall has to offer, whether it’s a popular novel set in the local area or that little gem of a book that you just can’t find anywhere else.”

The Holyer an Gof Book Fair will be open from 10am to 4pm, all are welcome, parking is free and there is no charge for admission.

Gorsedh Kernow – Maintaining the Celtic Spirit of Cornwall
Press release for immediate use issued Monday 9th June 2014 by
Delia Brotherton, Gorsedh Kernow Communications Officer.

End of press release


For further information about the Gorsedh Kernow Holyer an Gof Publishers’ Awards please contact Rael Harvey, tel 01209 719321
or email enquiries@holyerangofawards.org.uk

For general information about Gorsedh Kernow please contact Delia Brotherton, Gorsedh Kernow Communications Officer, tel 01736 799305
or email tirhatavas@hotmail.co.uk

Photographs taken by Gareth Parry:

Above: “Former Grand Bard Vanessa Beeman with winners of the 2013 Holyer an Gof Trophy – l to r Vanessa Beeman, Anne Knight (rep the publisher Federation of Old Cornwall Societies) and Andrew Langdon, author of the winning publication ‘Wade-Bridge: notes on the history of the fifteenth century bridge’ “

Below:  “Reader reviewers for Holyer an Gof make their selection from some of the entries for 2014.”


There will be new and secondhand books for sale at the inaugural Holyer an Gof Book Fair, with representation from, among others, Waterstones in Truro, Gorsedh Kernow, Mabecron Press, Noonvares, Kowethas an Yeth, Spyrys a Gernow, Agan Tavas and The St Ives Archive Centre.

The Holyer an Gof Publishers’ Awards are promoted annually by Gorsedh Kernow for publications relating to Cornwall or the Cornish Language and were launched in 1996 in memory of Redruth Publisher and Bard of the Cornish Gorsedh, Leonard Truran, whose bardic name was Holyer an Gof – Follower of The Smith.

The awards were established and organised by members of Gorsedh Kernow to raise the standard and profile of publishing in Cornwall.

Winning entries in each one of 12 categories are announced and prizes awarded at a special Presentation evening at Waterstones in Truro, with each category winner receiving a certificate from Gorsedh Kernow. Some catgories also receive a £50 donation to the Cornish charity of their choice.

The Holyer an Gof Trophy, presented by the late Joan Truran, is perpetual and awarded for the most outstanding entry in the competition.