‘The Story of St Piran’, a new bilingual storybook on the Patron Saint of Tinners, has received tremendous support across Cornwall and beyond.

Written in English alongside a Cornish translation, the book brings to life the intriguing tale behind Cornwall’s most famous day, for children and adults alike.

This year St Piran’s Day (March 5) coincided with World Book Day. To celebrate both events, the book – published by Kowethas An Yeth Kernewek (The Cornish Language Fellowship) – was sent to primary schools all over Cornwall.

“We have been delighted by how well this book has been received,” said Emma Jenkin, on behalf of the publishers.

“Kowethas visited a number of schools to deliver assemblies and workshops based on the book. It has been a pleasure to see more than 1,000 keen and attentive children, aged four to 11, enjoy the story, and the Cornish language.”

Kowethas aims to advance the education of the public in the Cornish language through promoting and encouraging its use. This is done through diverse publications in Cornish, including a monthly magazine, books and learning materials.

‘The Story of St Piran’, is also available to purchase and achieved hundreds of sales in its first week, with a number of copies being sent as far as Australia and America.

Cornwall Council’s ‘Real Heroes Read Books’ campaign based a special St Piran’s Day ‘Bedtime Story’ on the book, which was broadcast via Facebook on the evening of March 5. Books were also given as prizes to the winners of the Nos Pyran Quiz at the London Trelawny Shout in Covent Garden.

‘The Story of St Piran’ was written by Tom Gainey and illustrated by his cousin Ryan Cardew, both from Redruth – and has been published in memory of Tom’s father, Stephen Gainey.

Stephen was a Cornish Bard and had been a partner at RRL chartered accountants, based in Truro, since 1996. Following sudden illness, Stephen died in December 2018 at the age of 57.

In June of last year his colleagues teamed up with his family to complete a 12-mile sponsored walk from Portreath to Devoran. They raised £2,000 for Kowethas, a charity close to Stephen’s heart, which enabled the publishing of this book and for copies to be provided to schools.

“We have been overwhelmed by everyone’s support and interest in the book,” said Tom. “It’s been especially brilliant to see so many schools work it into their World Book Day and St Piran’s Day celebrations.

“My dad always made sure that St Piran’s Day was well-celebrated in our house. The flags were always flying, and the story was known off by heart.

“It’s a special feeling to know that, in his memory, the Cornish language and the story of St Piran can become increasingly more accessible to a younger audience, and perhaps those of an older generation who want to learn more.”

The Story of St Piran is available to purchase for £4.99. Further details can be found at www.cornish-language.org or on Facebook at: @Kowethas