First Kernow is offering free bus passes to the 100-plus Grenfell Tower survivors and firefighters booked to visit Cornwall this year on holidays offered by the Cornwall Hugs Grenfell initiative.

Alex Carter, managing director of First Kernow, handed over the family bus passes to Cornwall Hugs Grenfell founder, Esmé Page, in Falmouth where she was meeting with the university to finalise plans for the group holiday later this month.

The 40 or so Grenfell Tower survivors now booked on the Falmouth holiday will also receive Mussel cards from Fal River enabling them to enjoy the freedom of the river, in addition to unlimited travel on Cornwall’s local buses.

"This is a First class gift in every way and comes at just the right moment," said Esmé. "Most Grenfell survivors don’t have a car so this really opens up the county to them. Our first guests are already in Cornwall and will be using their passes this week. I’m imagining the children on an open top bus with the wind in their hair, enjoying a family day out and making new memories in all our Cornish beauty spots. It’s what the project’s all about and First Kernow’s gift is a key part in making the vision a reality."

Alex added: "When we heard about Cornwall Hugs Grenfell we immediately wanted to help. The work of Esmé and the team at Cornwall Hugs Grenfell is incredibly admirable and it’s fantastic to see the Cornwall community come together to welcome the survivors to our county with open arms.

"What they have been through is unimaginably distressing, but we hope that the generosity from everyone across Cornwall can make a difference. There’s so much to see and do in Cornwall, it’s our pleasure to help them get around, make the most of their time here and create great memories that will last a lifetime."

So far Cornwall Hugs Grenfell has booked holidays for 20 firefighter and Grenfell Tower families in properties donated by individual owners in Cornwall. In the last ten days the project also booked a further nine families onto its set departure group holiday which takes place at the end of August on Falmouth University campus, thanks to Falmouth University and the University of Exeter. More than 100 guests will visit Cornwall through the project this year and the number is rising daily.

"We’ve had a great response on the ground in Kensington," said Esmé. "There are new sign-ups every day and the Grenfell residents tell us they are so relieved to know they can get away for a change of scenery and some rest. We need more availability to meet demand so would welcome all new accommodation pledges via our website."

Cornwall Hugs Grenfell is calling for restaurants, cafés, attractions and local cab companies to join the 20-plus other businesses who have pledged vouchers for the guests. Organisations can pledge support through the ‘business offers’ button at or by emailing

Accommodation providers should pledge using the Accommodation Pledges button. Individual gifts can be made via the Just Giving page, Cornwall Hugs Grenfell Phase 2.