The Legend of St. Piran
Legend has it that St. Piran, the patron saint of Cornwall, landed on the sandy shores of Perranporth after being banished by the Irish king, who was suspicious of his astounding powers, including raising soldiers from the dead after battle.
After battling the stormy seas, he found himself at Perranporth where he decided to build an oratory, which is now preserved in the sand dunes, and his first followers were said to be a badger, a fox and a bear.
The discovery of tin
Also known as the ‘patron saint of the tinners’, St. Piran discovered tin completely by accident after a stone on his fire leaked out a white liquid. This influenced the design of the St. Piran’s flag, now seen flying throughout Cornwall and beyond. A white cross on a black background, representing the white tin coming out of the black rock as well as showing the good overcoming the evil. He is believed to have lived until the grand old age of 200 years, until falling down a well after a tipple one evening.
Traditionally, miners would have the day off as a holiday and they would feast and celebrate the past year. Now, some town councils in the county grant their employees the day off after bank holiday proposals made by the people of the Cornwall.
Modern day St Piran
Fast forward to the 21st century and we’re all still celebrating the ‘Patron saint to the people of Cornwall’ on March 5th every year, some of us getting as ‘drunk as a perraner’!
Where will you be celebrating? The St Piran’s day parade will be taking place in Bodmin at 11am or if you fancy a sing-song make your way to Perranporth for a procession, led by the Falmouth Marine band, to the oratory on the beach. Sing along with the choirs before enjoying a play all about St Piran’s life at Perran Sand Holiday park.
Agas gweles ena!