Porthcurno Telegraph Museum mobilises community to capture Olympic Torch Relay

By Donna Smiley | 10 May 2012
a balck and white photo of three men walking towards the camera beneath the Olympic rings symbol
Fijian boxer Hector Hatch, who competed in the 1956 summer Olympics in Melbourne, Australia, worked as a statistical clerk for Cable & Wireless, who owned and operated the world’s largest telegraph cable station at Porthcurno
Cornwall might be nearly 300 miles from London, but it has long held connections with the Olympic games.

In the early 20th century, undersea telegraph cables originating from the town played a vital role in carrying Olympic stories around the world.

Now the Porthcurno Telegraph Museum is getting in on the Olympic action again, creating a community-led project inspired by the Torch Relay for the forthcoming London 2012 games.

The project, called Torchbearers, has been awarded a prestigious Olympic Inspire mark, recognising it as an innovative project inspired by the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

The people of Porthcuro are invited to contribute by sending in their photographs of the Torch relay as it passes through their communities. The best photographs will go on to feature in the community exhibition, Torchbearers, in late July.

The exhibition, which will be created by young locals, will also bring together stories from the Olympics past and present.

A quick delve into Porthcurno’s archive has already revealed that Olympic athlete of 1956, Fijian boxer Hector Hatch, worked as a statistical clerk for Cable & Wireless, who owned and operated the world’s largest telegraph cable station at Porthcurno.

Learning & Interpretation Manager Larissa Paver explained how the exhibition would capture “a once-in-a-lifetime spectacle”.

“It’s a chance for anyone, whatever their age or technical ability, to have their photographs featured in a museum exhibition which will be seen by thousands of people," she said.

The Museum is seeking photos taken of the torch relay as it passes through Sennen, Newlyn, Penzance and Marazion on Saturday May 19.

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