The far west has long attracted artists, best know were the Newlyn and St Ives Schools pulling names like my favourite Barbara Hepworth, along with Ben Nicholson, Stanhope Forbes and more.
Authors too have been drawn to the coastline – Winston Graham may not rank on the shelves of British literature, but from his home in Perranporth he penned the Poldark series that has twice put Cornwall back on the map following its TV screenings. Patrick Gale chose the far west and several of his novels reflect our surroundings here.
I thought of Patrick when I came across Trevilley Exchange Library – I suspect he’d approve. The library is a sweet small shed on the footpath to Nanjizal and houses a hundred or so books with an open invitation to borrow something to read, and perhaps deposit books you’ve finished with.
I’ll be making a contribution from The Cornish Way library’s overflow very soon – I just need a new stamp pad so that I can do some subtle but shameless self promotion by leaving our brand on each.
It would be interesting to claim that it’s Britain’s smallest library, but I know that wouldn’t be true. I once wrote about a similar set up in a telephone box in Limpley Stoke, near Bath.
My suggested starter novel for reading Patrick Gale – Notes from an Exhibition.