The pasty and mining have always been entwined in Cornish history – the ultimate robust, filling and transportable meal for hard working, hard rock miners. Both have their traditions and folklore; was there a sweet and a savoury end? Did the miners hold the crimp with their dirty, dusty, hands and then discard it – maybe as a ‘gift’ to the Knockers – the sprites that were said to live at the bottom of the mines?
Therefore, it’s wonderful that the Main Supporter of Cornish Pasty Week 2020 is the Cornish Mining World Heritage Site – the largest industrial World Heritage Site in the UK, with over 20,000 hectares spread across Cornwall and west Devon.
The heats of the World’s Fastest Crimper contest will take place on 24th February at Heartlands in Pool; one of the jewels in the Cornish Mining Heritage crown, and a key centre for the organisation. What could be more iconic – crimping Cornish pasties in the shadow of a Cornish engine house and winding gear?
In 2006 selected mining landscapes across Cornwall and West Devon were inscribed as UNESCO World Heritage Site, placing Cornish mining heritage on a par with international treasures like the Taj Mahal and the Great Wall of China. The Cornish Mining World Heritage Site offers myriad experiences to explore our world changing mining culture.
Cornwall and west Devon’s mining landscape, shaped during a period of intense industrial activity, is testimony to one of the greatest periods of economic, technological and social development Britain has ever known. From 1700 to 1914, the metal mining industry played a vital role in transforming our way of life. It provided essential raw materials to feed the Industrial Revolution in Britain and pioneered technological developments that helped shape the society we live in today.
The goal of the World Heritage Site Office is to promote, protect and conserve the site for the future. They also work in partnership with a number of fantastic attractions including, Geevor Mine, Heartlands, The National Trust and King Edward Mine to provide educational resources to ensure future generations are aware of the legacy of Cornish mining.
In the last year The Cornish Mining World Heritage Site has continued to support cultural events and they currently have a mining version of the ‘Cornish Caretakers’ touring primary schools in Cornwall and West Devon, teaching them about their Mining Heritage.
Their Official Guide to the Cornwall and West Devon Mining Landscape World Heritage Site, which provides an overview of all 10 areas of the World Heritage Site and generates funds to support their work conserving and protecting the site, won a Holyer an Gof Publisher’s award this year and is available across Cornwall.