festival 2016


We had a great time at the first WHITEGOLD pop up festival this year with hundreds of people visiting the events, getting their hands messy and learning more about the heritage and future of clay in St Austell. Here are just a few pictures of what went on…


Whitegold Pop- Festival 2016

1st October 2016 – 10-00 to 16-00, White River Place, St Austell, PL25 5AZ

Exhibition: WHITEGOLD – Contemporary Cornish Ceramics

10:00 to 16-00, Cornwall College Exhibition Space, White River Place. Free.

Clay is what has made St Austell great – see a selection of the best individual ceramic makers in Cornwall today who take their inspiration from the landscape and its clay to create fantastic tableware, sculptures and much more.

Exhibition – Curated by Karl Owen and Lisa Mortensen from Cornwall College Art Department – exhibitors include Jenny Beavan, Paul Jackson, Karl Owen, Sarah Cooling, Vicky Aimers, Fjike Middledor, Vanessa Penrose, Amy Cooper, Wendy Wilbraham, Jane Smith, Amie Scott, Vicky Aimers, Chris Prindl, Daisy Corfield, Geo Palmer, Rhiannan Van Muysen, Lou Thorn and Karl Owen.

Film – on show throughout the day will be a brand new film made for WHITEGOLD by Oli Udley and the University of Plymouth, of ceramicists Jenny Beavan and Paul Jackson talking about their work and inspiration.

Public art – your chance to see exciting new designs for White River Place by Cornwall College lecturer Karl Owen and students who are working on unique public art mosaics for the square.

Wheal Martyn Museum – Staff and volunteers from Wheal Martyn, the only museum dedicated to the china clay industry in the world, will be on hand to talk about opportunities to get involved in a variety of activities and answer questions about the history of Cornwall’s china clay industry.

IMERYS Minerals – Imerys personnel will be on hand to talk about the modern china clay industry and how IMERYS meets the demands of the ever-changing market place for industrial minerals from its operation in Mid Cornwall.


Launch: Clay Town Vision with Tim Smit and James Staughton

12-00 to 12-30, Cornwall College Exhibition Space, White River Place. Free.

Tim Smit from the Eden Project and James Staughton from St Austell Brewery will introduce an exciting new Clay Town vision for St Austell, creating a distinctive image of the town that will celebrate its unique culture, bring hope and aspiration to the people of the town and footfall for its businesses, an ambitious cultural vision built on the foundation of St Austell – clay.


Workshop: White River in china clay with Jenny Beavan

10.00 to 16-00, the old Eden Café, White River Place. Free.

Throughout the day you can help Jenny and the makers from Eden to imagine a new ‘White River’ for the town of St Austell in fired porcelain and molochite. Create interesting objects like leaves and seeds in porcelain and china to float down the river – from source to sea. At the White river’s estuary cup and saucers in porcelain will make a huge show of the first-class porcelain, the legacy of St. Austell used all over the world.

Jenny Beavan Water

Jenny Beavan Water


Workshop: Eucryphia in clay with Paul Jackson

10-00 to 16-00, the old Eden Café, White River Place. Free.

Celebrate the unique St Austell Eucryphia trees of Holy Trinity churchyard in this workshop with Cornish potter Paul Jackson. Paul will be inviting the public to help make and place clay flowers on trees as symbols and messages about of future regeneration in St Austell – a fun hand-on event for all ages. Free.

Eucryphia Cordifolia from St Austell's churchyard

Eucryphia Cordifolia from St Austell’s churchyard


Pop up urban garden: the Eden Project guerrilla gardeners

10.00 to 16-00, White River Place. Free.

The best towns are made of more than concrete and stone, the guerrilla (not gorilla) gardeners from Eden will demonstrate how St Austell could be transformed into a greener more enjoyable place to live, work and visit with this pop up garden.


Food and Drink: Beer tasting with St Austell Brewery

10.00 to 16-00, the old Eden Café, White River Place. Free.

St Austell Brewery will have a pop-up bar at which beers will be available to taste throughout the day. The St Austell Brewery dates back to 1851 when the china clay industry was at its height (and the workers in the pits were thirsty).


Food and Drink: Cornwall College Street Food

10.00 to 16-00, White River Place. As priced.

Cornwall College’s fresh young chefs will  create a pop-up café with hot / cold drinks and cakes as well as a contemporary barbecue. Sample some original Cornish street food and support local talent !


The WHITEGOLD project is a partnership of Cornwall College, The Eden Project, Plymouth University and Wheal Martyn museum. It is generously funded by Arts Council England and sponsored by St Austell Brewery, with support in kind from White River Place. It is an initiative of Tim Smit at the Eden Project and James Staughton from St Austell Brewery with the St Austell Bay Economic Forum and Cornwall Council.


Arts Council England