Paul Voices launch

St. Pol de Leon Oral History project goes digital

Paul Voices, an oral history project based in Paul near Mousehole is going digital as a response to the recent COVID-19 outbreak and is launching their website on Monday 4 May. The website will have opportunities for the wider community to participate in an intriguing on-line Treasure Trail. The project, funded by Awards for All and Heritage Fund, is community-led and started in 2018. This years activities aimed to disseminate the oral histories collected so far in community get togethers with six seasonal events. Two successful and entertaining events already occurred at Paul Feast 2019 and the other, Paul Story Night took place in January 2020. This next event had intended to bring people together to celebrate May time but the lockdown has created a different opportunity for the group.

During this challenging time we've had to be inventive about how we engage with the absorbing oral histories collected. With thanks to the technical skills of Chris Osborne from the village we have created a website to hold the edited interviews, photos, poems, stories and animation so more people can enjoy them. An exciting outcome is that we got in touch with Mousehole School to see if they wanted to engage with the material especially during this current lock-down period of home schooling. As a result we have developed a Treasure Trail page on the website with a quiz which directly relates to the oral history extracts and some extra fascinating questions about the village and its surrounds which will really test local knowledge. Participants may have to 'phone a friend' or do a bit of research to find the answers. The Treasure Trail is open to all, not just school children and we hope that it will appeal to all ages, especially during this time where we are stuck at home. The website demonstrates a variety of creative responses to the history and oral histories of Paul and we are also inviting the wider community and schoolchildren to make their own creative response to the oral histories and information on the site.
Barbara Santi, director awen productions.
I grew up in Paul in the 70s so I had no idea about how young people socialised in the 30s, 40s and 50s. However this subject came up so often with interviewees and their accounts were so vivid and detailed I really grasped its significance to them. I was inspired by this and wrote two short poems as a response. It would be great if the schoolchildren and wider community were also inspired by the website content to respond with poems, stories or pictures too.
Mel Mitchel, project facilitator and artist

You can take part and listen to the audios at

The quiz will be launched on Monday 4 May. Answers will then be made available on Monday 1 June. If people have any creative responses, stories about Paul wanting to be recorded, photos to be contributed towards the archive please get in touch