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Former regional journalist to be made a Bard

A celebrated former regional press journalist who retired earlier this year is to be made a Bard at a special ceremony next month.

Colin Gregory, left, has been chosen to join the ranks of the Gorsedd, a non-political, non-religious organisation which exists to promote the traditions of Cornwall and whose members wear blue robes.

He will be honoured for services to Cornwall through the media after working in the local press for almost half a century, retiring from the Truro-based West Briton in March.

Colin will be initiated into the Gorsedd, along with 15 other Cornish residents, by Grand Bard Mick Paynter during an annual event which takes place at St Ives on 4 September.

He joined the Cornish and Devon Post in 1962 and went on to work for the Western Morning News and BBC Radio Cornwall, spending his last eight years in the industry with the West Briton.

During his career, he was the only journalist to accompany the Queen down Geevor Mine before its closure in 1991 and he also interviewed every Prime Minister since Harold Wilson, including Margaret Thatcher on four occasions.

The Gorsedd event next month will include a procession of around 300 Bards, followed by a public ceremony, which is conducted mainly in Cornish.

It includes a traditional call for peace, a flower dance and ‘joining of the sword,’ along with prize-giving and awards.