The Cornwall Branch of the Celtic League is getting reports from concerned property and land owners between Four Lanes, Redruth and Helston in Cornwall.
Many residents of the area have received official notices from the Duchy of Cornwall and the Land Registry informing of applications by the Duchy to register mines and minerals.
The reason for this correspondence from both the Duchy and Land Registry is given as a change in the law.
The applicant’s details are fully given as ‘His Royal Highness Charles Philip Arthur George Duke of Cornwall and Rothesay Earl of Chester and Carrick Baron Renfrew Lord of the Isles and Great Steward of Scotland in right of his Duchy of Cornwall’.
The application made gives notice to register mines and minerals – whole, powers of working and was lodged by the Duchy of Cornwall of The Old Rectory, Newton St. Loe, Bath BA2 9BU.
All those in receipt of the notice bearing the registration number CL 302203 which is dated 6 March 2014 gives each recipient until 12 noon on the 27 March 2014 to either object or consent to the application and if choosing to object to set out legal details for so doing.
The notice from the Duchy of Cornwall ends by adding that the ‘application is solely to protect those rights, and does not indicate that the Duchy has any present intention to work the minerals’.
Local landowners, some of whom grow crops and keep cattle and other livestock on the land have expressed their concern at this notice describing themselves as feeling both bullied and confused.
Nicholas Williams of Four Lanes told CCN he’d now had two letters, the first of which gave him just ten days to take on the full might of the Duchy in their mining claim.
He explained: “It was a very bullying letter, and I was very intimidated by it. I don’t have the time or the money to fight the claim.”
Some are worried that the implication of a ‘whole powers of working’ implies a right of way to gain access to any prospective workings in order to mine minerals.
They say the notice does not rule out any future intention to work the minerals.
There is also a concern that property values may be adversely affected.
The Cornwall Branch of the Celtic League has forwarded a copy of one of the six page notices to a lawyer with an in-depth knowledge of the secretive workings of the Duchy of Cornwall with a request for any advice which may be freely available.
We strongly recommend that anyone in receipt of such a notice consults with their own solicitor or legal representative as soon as possible before signing the papers.
This is particularly important as events and statutes dating from 1337, 1844 and 1846 are referenced in the notice.