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Everything you need to know about Trevithick Day

Everything you need to know about Trevithick Day

Published by Sarah Yeoman at 7:31am 27th April 2019.

Thousands gather in one Cornish town to honour the man who designed the world's first moving steam engine.

Camborne Trevithick Day celebrates the life of engineer Richard Trevithick and is being held on Saturday 27th April.

It will see hundreds of school children, families and members of the community join together.

Among festivities will be a special parade, with working models making their way through the town, as well as entertainment and dancing.

"The first Camborne Trevithick Day took place in 1984 and the community event has quickly become an important part of the Cornish calendar, attracting some 25,000 to 30,000 visitors.  

"It is a day of free entertainment to celebrate Camborne’s links with Richard Trevithick and local industrial heritage.

"There’s a carnival atmosphere in Camborne as its main streets are closed to traffic for the day and steam engines, street stalls, bands and entertainers take over the town.

"Rosewarne car park is transformed into a funfair and many of Camborne’s buildings are home to displays or offer refreshments."

Trevithick Day organisers

Watch some of the highlights from previous years below...

What's happening on the day?

  • Bal Maidens & Miners Dance (children’s dance) 10:15am
  • Trevithick’s Dance (adult dance) 2:15pm
  • Steam Parade 3:15pm 
  • Street entertainment
  • Street displays 
  • Sound stages 
  • Indoor exhibitions 

Everything you need to know about travel and parking.

So who was Trevithick?

Richard Trevithick (1771-1833) - a Short Biography

(original research by Marj Rowland)

Richard Trevithick was born in a cottage a mile or so from Dolcoath Mine, where his father was a mine Captain. His curiosity about the engineering aspects of the mining area that he grew up in started at an early age, and this led to a career during which he pioneered the use of high pressure steam, and increased the efficiency of the engines used to pump water from the lower levels of Cornwall's tin and copper mines.

Trevithick's inventive mind was never still - his ideas ranged from the first successful self-powered road vehicle, and a steam railway engine, to schemes for wreck salvage, land reclamation, mechanical refrigeration, agricultural machinery and for tunnelling under the Thames.

Trevithick's career spanned the dawn of the industrial revolution, a time when Cornwall's engineering prowess was the envy of the world.

Trevithick spent eleven years in South America, working for owners of silver mines.

Richard Trevithick is buried in an unmarked grave at Dartford, Kent, where he was working when he died.

Like many great men and women, Trevithick did not get the recognition he deserved during his lifetime.

Indeed, his worth has only recently been recognised by many history books.

He did not acquire riches either; any wealth that came Trevithick's way soon disappeared as he developed his next idea- one of his last ideas, for a competition for a memorial to the "Reform Bill", was for a thousand feet high cast iron column with an air operated lift to convey passengers up the inside!

Source: www.trevithick-day.org.uk

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