March 5th is a date which for many Cornish residents will be accompanied in the calendar by a harsh pen marking, firmly circling the date and cementing St Piran’s Day in the yearly plan.
Saint Piran’s Day is a long standing Cornish tradition and one which will be celebrated by thousands across the county. The event celebrates all things Cornish and marks the life of Saint Piran, patron saint of tin miners, believed to have discovered the precious metal.
While there is some debate as to the origin of the saint, many believe that Saint Piran, or ‘Perran’ as he is also known, was a bishop who travelled to Cornwall from Ireland in the early 6th-century. Legend says that he was exiled from the isle by those envious of his healing abilities, leading him to be tied to a milestone and thrown into the sea. Despite this, he managed to sail to Cornwall, landing on a small beach near Newquay, which was subsequently named Perran Beach. Upon his arrival, he began preaching to the local population and sharing his secrets of tin extraction with local miners; thus launching the tin-mining industry in Cornwall.
St Piran’s Day runs deep as a tradition in Cornwall, the county’s flag even representing the saint’s precious discovery.
Communities across the county hold events celebrating Cornwall, Cornish life and Cornish heritage and this year is no different, with towns and villages all over our area hoping to host the festivities.