The Poly

24 Church St, Falmouth : 01326 319461
The Royal Cornwall Polytechnic Society

What's On Calendar

Have a look at the calendar text here to see what's coming up.

Poly Stories

Do you remember the Howard Spring era? Were you there in the early days of Miracle Theatre, Near-ta Theatre, or when Falmouth Arts Centre screened its first film in the 1990s? Or do you simply have treasured memories of Poly nights out, or want to share what The Poly means to you? The Poly would love to hear from you.

Welcome to our new heritage project - ‘Poly Stories’. We have been developing this community project over the summer alongside our Community Pottery Project – both have been generously enabled by Arts Council and National Lottery funding.

The goal of ‘Poly Stories’ is to invite all residents of Falmouth and beyond, young and old, to submit their memories of The Poly from the end of World War II to the present day. We’re also keen to collect copies of photos or documents that could be added to The Poly’s own archive. The stories collected will be curated and showcased in an online exhibition which will open later this year.

The Covid-19 closure gave us pause to reflect on our long history - The Poly has been a Falmouth institution for 187 years! Founded in 1833, the Cornwall Polytechnic Society was the inspiration of Anna Maria and Caroline Fox. They were the teenage daughters of Robert Were Fox of G.C. Fox & Co, a firm of prominent local shipping agents. The firm was also joint owner of the Perran Foundry, whose workmen constantly brought models and inventions for inspection, and new ideas for improving the working of the foundry. With Robert Were Fox’s encouragement, the society was formed ‘to promote the useful and fine arts, to encourage industry, and to elicit the ingenuity of a community distinguished for its mechanical skill’.

Although it sounds archaic now, this goal still resonates: our priorities today are to encourage and support artistic, creative and technological endeavour and innovation, and contribute to the economic well-being of our town and region by developing The Poly as a premier venue for entertainment, inspiration and education across the arts, sciences and local history. Poly Stories is part of that goal to grow and showcase our collections and archives to support historical research.

From its 19th century focus on technical and industrial innovation, through its shift of focus to the arts in the 1950s, to its rescue from closure in 2010 by the ‘Save Our Poly’ campaign, The Poly has certainly not always had the smoothest journey! But it remains here, in its grade II* listed building in the centre of town, as a centre for the technological, artistic and cultural life of Falmouth and the surrounding area. It is the lived experience of The Poly’s contribution that this project hopes to capture.

We hope you will help us build a richer picture of the history of The Poly, built on the memories of its visitors and supporters. Our goal is that this collaborative project will gives us all the chance to remember and capture our shared history for future generations.

HOW TO JOIN IN

You can share your stories via our online form, via info@thepoly.org, or on our social media - full details are in the side banner. 

Your stories can come in any form. We’d love memories of special performances or events, longer written pieces, video diaries, audio recordings and photos, and copies of any memorabilia, artefacts or images you might have collected over the years. You can focus on what The Poly means to you, or you can contribute your experience of different eras and events to our wider historical understanding of the social and cultural developments that The Poly has been at the heart of. We can provide audio and film recording, amongst other options, for longer contributions – just get in touch with what you’d like to share!

We’ll be digging into our archive and talking to longstanding Poly contributors to share stimulus material over the coming weeks and months to prompt memories and encourage contributions. 

 

 

 

Lou Sanders (Work in Progress)

Lou Sanders (Taskmaster, Travelman, QI) does about 50 minutes of new material and maybe fills time by talking to you...

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Intermediate Course: Pottery Throwing

Our head potter Karl will teach you the basics of pottery throwing, starting with throwing basic cylinders and then...

Find out more

Intermediate Course: Pottery Throwing

Our head potter Karl will teach you the basics of pottery throwing, starting with throwing basic cylinders and then...

Find out more
Contact us:

T: 01326 319461
E: info@thepoly.org

Address:

The Poly, 24 Church Street, Falmouth, TR11 3EG

Social Media:

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© The Poly - The Poly is the trading name of the Royal Cornwall Polytechnic Society Limited, a company limited by guarantee and incorporated in England and Wales with company registration number 03909555 and registered charity number 1081199, with its registered office at 24 Church Street, Falmouth TR11 3EG