Laila Pyne joins Peter Arthur Moon on the writing team for Tarosvadnow

The film involves a great deal of the history of slavery and important black history, which I felt could only be written in partnership with a black writer who understands the context and sensitivities surrounding this dark part of Cornwall’s history.

Laila’s contributions so far have transformed the film in terms of both her experience in delivering performances, and also in terms of accuracy and attributing agency to our black characters. There is no substitute for writing from lived experience.

Her character’s past turns out to be as much as a victim of exploitation as the ghosts that haunt the mines, both the Cornish and African people were treated with casual disregard for any level of compassion.

Cornwall’s connection to slavery may be less tenuous than other parts of Britain, but it is still a shamefull part of our past that has been erased from our history.

You won’t find any information or truth in our local museums or books on Cornish history. We aim to put that right here.

Cornwall did have one of the strongest abolitionist movements though. Methodists in particular were vocal protesters against slavery in the sugar plantations, to the point they refused to take sugar in tea.

The parallels between their pasts are key to the resolution of the film, which uncovers startling levels of cruelty and poverty in Cornwall’s past.

We are incredibly fortunate to have Laila involved so deeply in the genesis of the film. Laila is a genius writer and finds novel ways to express quite difficult subjects.

Peter Arthur Moon, Cornwall May 2023