The recent visit to Cornwall made by a delegation of Mexican officials has been hailed a resounding success by the Cornish-Mexican Society and also the team behind Cornish Mining World Heritage.

Over the last week, the group – which included ministers and mayors along with other key figures in the Mexican political establishment – has been touring the county in an effort to strengthen cultural and economic relations and also press forward with the bid to recognise several Mexican sites as World Heritage “Frontiers of Cornish Mining”.

The delegation spent time in Redruth and Camborne, both of which already have friendship or twin agreements with the Mexican towns of Real del Monte and Pachuca, thanks to the efforts of the Cornish-Mexican Society, who arranged the visit. These towns are located in the State of Hidalgo, which became home to a large number of emigrating Cornish miners during the mid-nineteenth century. Their influence can still be seen today in the form of Cornish architecture, engine-houses, Methodist churches and even pasty shops.

On Monday the group visited County Hall where they met with Cornish councillors for an official reception. The Mayor of Pachuca Omar Fayed Meneses was presented with a photo plaque (of Cornish and Mexican Engine Houses side-by-side) by Chair of the Council, Cllr. Doris Ansari. The occasion was a historic one as it was the first time local government officials from Hidalgo had visited Cornwall during a shared history which spans more than 200 years.

Nick Johnson - Cornwall County Council’s Historic Environment Service Manager and County Archaeologist - said the trip was a valuable opportunity to establish and strengthen the existing bonds: “It’s still early days to pursue the concept of a trans-national World Heritage site centred around Cornish mining. But what’s clear is that Mexico and Cornwall have a rich, shared heritage and it’s vital that that is maintained.”

Towards the end of the week, the group toured Camborne and Redruth and visited King Edward Mine, Carn Brea, the Heartlands Project and the University campus at Tremough, before rounding off their stay with a trip to Helston’s Blue Anchor pub - complete with skittles and Morris Dancing (which the Mexicans thoroughly enjoyed getting involved in).

“This was an excellent visit that was extremely positive for all the organizations concerned,” said Richard Williams, from the Cornish-Mexican Society. “They are going back with lots of information and we anticipate working closely together in the future. The Mexicans went away with a very positive impression of Cornwall and Cornish people – they actually said they expected us to be aloof but found everyone to be warm and welcoming.”