Monday, December 31, 2007

Happy New Year

We at The Museum of Witchcraft would like to wish all our visitors & supporters a very happy New Year. May 2008 be as magical as you wish it to be!

Please note the photo has nothing to do with New Year, I just like it!!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

New Bridge

Well, after all the controversy regarding the replacement of the bridge outside the museum, the new bridge was finally lowered in to place yesterday Dec 18th. During the flood we had 14 cars wedged underneath the old bridge. The blockage contributed to quite a bit of the damage done to properties and increased risk to life so it was decided to replace it with a wider variety which will be less likely to be blocked by debris in case of another flood. Hannah took some photos of the momentous event.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Harbour Works photos

As promised here are a few photos of the ongoing works int he Harbour. The largest crane in the world (slight exaggeration) is readying itself for the bridge replacement on Tuesday. The Gateway building (read toilet block) at the entrance to the car park is on track to be finished around mid January I believe. The river itself is being widened & lowered outside the Things store & Valency lawn. All may look a little different next time you come along to Boscastle.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Boscastle Diggings

Having returned from a 3 week stint in Australia, I have found Boscastle to be awash with even more diggers, cranes & builders than before I left. The main road through the village was closed but thankfully (as of yesterday) it has reopended & traffic can make its way through, sometimes wth the help of traffic lights. Huge pipes are being laid along the museum side of the river & I believe the bridge outside the museum will be replaced on Tuesday. A massive crane is insitu readying itself for the task. I have taken some photos & will put them on shortly. The weather has been freezing but sunny, a far cry from last weekend which apparently saw some of the worst winds & storms Boscastle residents had seen for years. Some say there were 30 foot waves breaking in the harbour. Happily I flew in the day after all this happened & have had fab sunshine since my return. As I mentioned, I will pop a few photos of the works on so you can see what a tad of a mess Boscastle looks at the moment. Hopefullly it will all be worthwhile!!


Here is a photo of Mavis who sadly died on Nov 28 2007. Mavis loved nothing more than sitting on Graham's lap while he brushed her fur. She was, perhaps, the fussiest eater in the world but was extremely friendly & purred at the drop of a hat. She was much too glamorous to chase birds or mice & to our amusement, the resident robin would often strut its stuff inches from Mavis' disinterested glare. She definitely made the most of all of her nine lives, bouncing back from several operations & illnesses with kittenesque fervour. Bye Mavis - thanks for being a good friend.

Thursday, November 29, 2007


It is with great sadness that I must announce the passing of Mavis, our black & white cat. You would have seen photos of Mavis adorning these pages from when she cheered us up during the flood to her wearing a very attractve plastic neckpiece after one of her operations or sitting on Graham's lap - her favourite location. Unfortunately I don't have a photo to upload at this time as I am away from my own computer. Mavis will be sorely missed & was the best cat in Boscastle!!

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Museum Closes For Winter

It's time to hang our broomsticks up, put our pointy hats in storage & get ready for a rather fab holiday. As of today, November 4th, the museum is closed for the winter. We will reopen at Easter 2008. I will put occasional updates on the blog during this time. Have a cool Yule everyone.

Website Down

Unfortunately our website is down this weekend so apologies to all who have been trying to access it. We hope to have it up & running on Monday 5th. I thought we were over all those technical blips with Mercury being direct again but no such luck.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

WEBCAM goes weird - again!

Unfortunately we are experiencing WEBCAM problems again!
The webcam host site has let us down and we have had to move it to
So if you have it saved as a favourite or like to visit the site, please change the address.
The image is still only Black and White but we hope to have our replacement camera very soon and give you full colour so that you can appreciate the oranges and yellows of the diggers! Mercury is now direct so we are expecting normality to occur soon.

Monday, October 29, 2007

It's Pumpkin Time!

The Museum wishes everyone a Happy Halloween!! Graham has done a stirling carving job on the museum pumpkin, kindly donated by our local pumpkin supplier Sheree.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Pleasant Sunset Pic

As promised - Graham kayaking into the sunset at Boscastle Harbour. Not a bad shot if I do say so myself. He's making all the fishermen jealous by catching quite a number of seabass on his daily outings.


There's a fair amount of action taking place down in the harbour these days. Here are a couple of pics of the diggers in action by the museum.The hole is getting deeper & wider by the minute! We'll be closing Nov 4th so we'll get a bit of respite from the works. Very loud & smelly!! Graham is really getting in to his kayaking as a bit of a stress reliever - pleasant sunset pic follows.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Webcam links now all working

We're still in the good old days of black & white but the camera is now working from all links on the website. You can keep an eye on all the massive roadworks going on in the harbour. Unfortunately we don't have smellavision for you to get a whiff of the diesel fumes but take it from me - they're quite overpowering at times. We've just had another kind donation of books for the library from Mike Howard so that should keep Joyce busy cataloguing in the booth while she's enjoying aforementioned fumes. Hopefully she won't pass out.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Webcam up & running

The Webcam is now up & running after some tedious work - mercury is retrtograde after all. Please click here for the time being until we can amend the other link on the side bar. It is currently in black & white (thought we'd hearken back to another era) but we're working on the colour version. I'm off to my reiki class so have to write this in a hurry.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Museum Cards available online

The popular seasonal cards, originally painted for the museum by Vivienne Shanley, are now available online at The Occult Art Company website. Here's a pic of the most popular Samhain witch card. The CD 'Songs of Witchcraft & Magic' continues going from strength to strength with several plays on both Radio 2's Folk programme & Radio 3's late Junction. Yesterday we had a fab visit from one of the Wildgoose labels other exciting recording artists, Jim Causley. He's a young Devon folk singer & definitely worth a listen. We sold a lot of his CDs in The Boscastle Trading Co. By the way, Graham is working on the webcam & seems to have found a solution. Should be back on track shortly.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Web Cam down

We are currently experiencing problems with our webcam. We have had our cam-meister in to look it over & we hope to have it sorted shortly. Apparently it is a problem with AOL. There's a lot happening outside the museum with the diggers moving back in to continue the flood defense & sewerage works. The road on our side of the river is being dug up to lay pipes. They've started up by the old National Trust shop & will work their way down. Nice to have weekends off now that the Boscastle Trading Co is shut. I can finally tidy my house! We had a drinks evening last Monday to thank the artists who supported the project. The National Trust workers are now in the shop ready to convert it to a tea room.

Saturday, September 29, 2007


Recently, I've followed the pack & joined up with Facebook. I've started a 'Museum of Witchcraft' fanclub for people to send photos & add comments. If any of you are Facebook addicts & are interested in joining up please do. Check it out on Museum of Witchcraft Fans .

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Plugs across the Atlantic

Songs of Witchcraft & Magic keeps turning up on the radio! Following several plays on BBC Radio 2 and 3, and most of the local folk stations in Britain, it is now getting airplay in the USA. The latest was on KUAR FM89 in Little Rock Arkansas ! Then we heard about another play on CKCU-FM 93.1 Ottawa, Canada !! If you hear us on any other faraway radio stations please let us know.

Saturday, September 15, 2007


Graham is really getting into the kayaking. He's going out at every opportunity, not often on this frequently changeable Atlantic coastline. There is a rather friendly seal, William, who hangs out in the harbour eating fish thrown in by the fishing tourists. Here is a lovely pic of him taken by Graham when he was out on his kayak.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Wheel of the Year posters

The increasingly popular Wheel of the Year posters are currently out of stock on The Occult Art Company website but fear not as we are doing a new print run in a slightly larger A1 size. The Witch & Serpent posters will also be made larger. We do have a small number of these in stock until we make the changeover to the larger format. Thanks to John Hooper for supplying the image of the Wheel of the Year (painted by Vivienne Shanley). All other images are from the Richel Collection.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Boscastle Trading Co

It has been confirmed this week that The Boscastle Trading Co (the shop we've had this year next to the museum) will be closing at the end of Sept as The Environment Agency & South West Water will be digging up the roads outside to add to flood defences & put in sewerage pipes. We had intended to be open until end Oct but will be closing early. Next year the National Trust will be putting a tea room into the space. Hopefully the local artists who have been selling their work in the shop will find new outlets. This August has remained extremely quiet compared to other years. Thankfully the weather has improved & people can finally enjoy the fab outdoors around here. Graham is making the most of it as well & really loving his new toy - the kayak. A great destressser after a hectic day in the museum. He hasn't managed to catch any fish yet though!

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Shop has Six Weeks Left - we think

It looks like we may be winding up the shop next to the museum at the end of September - a month earlier than initially thought. The road on our side of the river is due to be dug up from the beginning of October as part of the ongoing works in the harbour. The area outside the museum should also be affected but we hope to remain open as usual. The shop itself has been a rather pleasant success - we've had a bit more space to retail museum items and local artists have been reaping the benefits of an outlet for their work. It's nice to be able to keep the income in the village rather than it all going outside to a national pot somewhere else in the country. There is little opportunity in Cornwall for locals to make money. In the words of that folksong: 'Cornish men are fishermen & Cornish men are miners too, but when the fish & tin are gone, what are the Cornish lads to do.' We'll keep you posted on the closing date but if you're in the area do pop in & say hi.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Petrified Teddy

No not terrified - just stiff & crispy. I think I mentioned this in a previous blog & now here is the photo. A recent donation!(Museum number 1875)

New Richel Collection Drawing

The museum has recently purchased a new addition to the Richel Collection. The drawing was done by Bob Richel himself and is, dare I say, a cacophony of symbolism ranging from phallic to impish (museum number 1885). Detailed information can be found on the website by doing an advanced search of the museum number. If you'd like a copy of this image please contact the museum or The Occult Art Company as it is protected by copyright.

Some New Acquisitions

I thought I'd put a few pics on of some of the new items we've acquired recently. We have a rapidly expanding section on the use of 'witch' imagery in advertising & here we have a particularly glam witch advertising the merits of Ipswich Hosiery in 1925 (museum number 1881). Thornes Toffees did a fab Mother Goose tin which I find particularly attractive (museum number 1880). A rather different, but equally fascinating, acquisition is a pentacle made from matchsticks by Bill Thompson. Bill is a prisoner serving a life sentence who has been a Pagan for many years. He made this pentacle from matchsticks and glue and has used it in his cell for several years (museum number 1882). Thanks for making this donation Bill.
As a general point, if you know the museum number of any artefact you can make an advanced search on the website to find out more information.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Accommodation available

If you fancy popping down to Boscastle in the next few weeks but don't think there'll be any vacant B & Bs then think again! Jack, who works in the museum booth two days a week, has a B & B overlooking the harbour & has had a few cancellations (no doubt due to the horrendous flooding up north). Many museum regulars have stayed there time & again. It's a superb location & Jack & Fay are very friendly. For enquiries check out the Pencarmol website or phone 01840250435.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Harbour Scene

I know this isn't very witchy but I thought it was such a nice photo I'd pop it on the blog. Graham had an evening of de-stressing the other night when he borrowed a canoe & went for a paddle around the harbour. He looked particularly fetching in his new shorty wet suit!! I think he's discovered a new hobby.

He's hoping to catch a close up glimpse of William the seal who frequents the harbour this time of year.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Ritual to Combat Global Warming

We've been alerted to a ritual to combat Global Warming that is to take place on August 25th. I thought I'd let people know so you can participate if you are interested. It's being organised by the group 'Silver Owls' and full information can be found on their website,

Monday, July 23, 2007

Witches' Almanac Reviews 'Songs of Witchcraft & Magic'

For those who take The Witches' Almanac, look out in the next edition for a review of the museum's CD. It is a US publication but can be found in some bookstores in the UK.

Friends now a registered charity

Hoorah! After much work by the 'Friends of the Museum of Witchcraft' team, the 'Friends' is now a registered charity. This opens all sorts of new fundraising opportunities, not to mention recognition by official museum bodies and the world! The museum team congratulates the new charity trustees who have worked so hard to achieve this status. There should be tax advantages as well, and the 'Friends' can now take advantage of the Gift Aid scheme for membership fees and donations.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Radio 2 to play Songs of Witchcraft & Magic - again

Mike Harding is planning to play another track or two either this Wednesday or next on Folk on 2 so have a listen. Good reviews keep coming in & sales are going well. We are having to do a second run of CDs which is a great sign.
The museum is a tad quiet this weekend as so many people are stranded due to the floods, unable to get to their holiday destinations. We've been spared the bad weather down here (touch wood) but it's horrendous to see the images on the news.
Our 'Flood Aid from Boscastle' flood fund is going well. We've raised £2,570 for Catcliffe in Yorkshire in one week & as I write, we're packing the many comfort boxes which have been donated into a car to be delivered in the next week or so. The people of Boscastle & Cornwall have been extremely generous so far. We're hoping other villages will start a similar scheme, especially now that the flood situation has worsened.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

CD reviews

greetings all
thought I'd put on a couple of reviews of the CD 'Songs of Witchcraft & Magic', for your reading pleasure. Mandrake Speaks & Folk Radio UK have both recently done some gorge reviews.

Mandrake Speaks says: 'Unlike the previous excellent CD emanating from Boscastle's amazing museum, this one is not locally produced but is in fact a compilation of many wonderful tracks from previously issued albums and artists. For example the ever famous Thomas the Rhymer is here included in the version of Both Shine As One by Ron Taylor & Jeff Gillett. Or the Song Alison Gross, made famous for me at least by 1970s folk rockers Steeleye Span is here included in the very fine version of Last Leaves by Malinky Greentrax. So this is a great compilation and you're gonna kick yourself if you don't buy it. Includes a lovely CD cover, lyrics and photographs from the museum whose work all profits will help support. '#

Click on the Folk Radio UK link to read what they have to say.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Latest on Flood Appeal

Graham is currently up in Catcliffe (the badly flood affected village in Yorkshire) to check out exactly where our help can be directed. There is widespread damage and many people are homeless, especially the elderly. He's liaising with the Parish Council & the local vicar to work out how best to utilise any money we raise. We're also putting together comfort boxes. We got the idea from a wonderful Devon coven who sent us a box of goodies after the flood here in 2004. It was much appreciated so we thought they might cheer up some people in Catcliffe. He'll be back tomorrow with an update so I'll have more info then.
On the museum front, all is well & visitor numbers remain quite good. The CD is still going well & The Boscastle Trading Co next door has been a popular addition to Boscastle (if only temporary). Remember we sell Museum t shirts and prints in there as well. We've also just got in some of John Hooper's cards featuring his amazing photographs (Alex Sanders' fans take note) and we have a small selection of Hedingham Fair t shirts & cards. Glass knitting needles (hand made replicas of a pair in the museum) are available here too. The other option to purchase museum items is on The Occult Art Company website.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Flood Aid from Boscastle

News re Flood Aid from Boscastle or 'FAB' for short. Apologies re the break in blogging but we've been beavering away here trying to get a local fundraising scheme going for the flood victims up north. After our flood in 2004 Boscastle benefited greatly from the generosity of the people of the UK and elsewhere so, with this recent hideous flooding in Yorkshire & surrounding areas, we were wondering how we could give something back. We came up with several ideas: local businesses clubbing together to put donation pots in the village shops, holding coffee mornings, concerts etc. We wanted to make it fairly formal so we've opened a bank account dedicated to the fund and formed a committee so it's as organised as possible. We've contacted the Lord Mayor of Sheffield & the vicars and Parish Councillors of some of the affected towns. As well as funds they have expressed an interest in people who were affected by the floods in Boscastle to come and speak to affected people up there. That may be something we'll look into down the track. At first we will try to focus on small specific areas so the funds are not diluted. I'd like to point out this is not just a museum initiative but involves many people in Boscastle, and the numbers are growing. We should be up & running with this in the next few days so if your visiting & see a donation pot, please consider helping out. We're not a very big village but we hope we can help in any way we can - just as a tiny way of saying thanks for those who helped us.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

All Is Well

Just wanted to thank everyone for the emails of support & good wishes after the recent flood. Everything is back to normal & business is as usual. The media did tend to over hype the issue somewhat. It was rather scary at the time but things got under control very quickly thanks to the swift action of the Fire Brigade & local Coast Guards. The shops near the main bridge had about 3 feet of water in & spent yesterday cleaning up but are open today. A couple of private properties near the main bridge also had water damage but things were nowhere near as bad as the 2004 flood. So please don't let this stop you from visiting Boscastle as everything is up & running as normal. We had the quietest day of the year yesterday & it's still rather quiet today. On the reail side of things, Graham has some fab new dark mirrors for sale in the museum. The obsidian ones are available through The Occult Art Company website and the black glass ones will be going on next week. If you're visiting the museum, look out for back issues of Pentacle magazine which have been donated by the editor. The new Summer 2007 Merry Meet magazine is out & available next door at The Boscastle Trading Co. There is a great review of the museum's 'Songs of Witchcraft & Magic' in it as well.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Some Flood Pics

The flood seems to be abating at the moment -touch wood. Graham has been on Coastguard Duty throughout the incident & is just about to step down for some well earned warmth & food. Although not as bad as last time it's still a tad stressful. Here are a few pics. At least it looks like the ducks are having a good time. Remember you can check the Webcam for on the spot views outside the museum to see if the river is rising. Thanks to those who've sent good wishes already.

Flood News

Some of you may have heard on the news that Boscastle is experiencing another severe flood. Just to make people aware that as of this time the museum & staff are all safe. The flood is not nearly as bad as last time but several of the shops near the other bridge were under around 3 feet of water. I will put some pics on later but now must dash. Will keep updating the blog with any news.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Welcome Jack-Farewell Carole

A bit belated but I thought I'd mention that this year we have had a change of staff. Many of you will remember Carole who worked in the booth & did many of the displays in the museum. Well this year she has left to go travelling so we have Jack from local B & B Pencarmol doing a few days a week. So welcome to Jack & Good Luck to Carole. Woo oo!!

Dennis Wheatley rides into the museum

We've recently had the most wonderful donation of a complete set of hardback Dennis Wheatley books. Thanks to the donor!! Good fun for Joyce to catalogue. A petrified teddy from Mother Shipton's cave arrived a week or so ago as well. No, not terrified just calcified from hanging in the petrifying well. Very cute.

Monday, June 11, 2007

The Boscastle Trading Co

Many of you have asked for pics of the The Boscastle Trading Co which we've taken over for the season. It's located next door to the museum at the old Cornish Goodies site. for those who don't know the story, the National Trust bought the shop last year to turn it into a teashop. Unfortunately they didn't manage to get it up & running in time so were going to leave it empty for the year. Not a great look for the village & not great for business in the museum. So we've taken it over for the year, doing local crafts, Fairtrade items & some museum retail. Here's a composite piccy for those who can't get down to see us in person.

Saturday, June 09, 2007

BBC 2's Mike Harding plays museum CD

Excitement reigned on Wednesday night this week when we heard a track from 'Songs of Witchcraft & Magic' played on Mike Harding's programme 'Folk on 2' on BBC Radio 2 along with a mention of the museum. He played Malinky's version of 'Alison Cross' which is one of my favourites. Remember you can get a copy at the online store associated with the museum or at the museum itself.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Beltane Bash

Hi to everyone we met at the London 'Beltane Bash' last weekend. We had a great time and met some fab people who are strong supporters of the museum. One group is even hiring a coach to make a trip down here. It's a great idea as public transport is quite sporadic in these parts.

Our best sellers at the Bash were the ever popular museum t shirts and the new CD 'Songs of Witchcraft & Magic.' I shared the stand with Steve Patterson, our favorite woodcarver who had a fab selection of dark mirrors and athames. We hope to be there again next year.

Have a Listen to Radio Shropshire

We've been getting a lot of radio play for the new CD 'Songs of Witchcraft & magic'.The latest is Genevieve Tudor's show on Radio Shropshire. Here's a link so you can keep an eye on her programme: Radio Shropshire - Genevieve Tudor

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Thanks Johnny

Thanks to Johnny Coppin who gave 'Songs of Witchcraft & Magic' and the museum a great plug on his excellent Folk Roots program on Radio Glousteshire. We are really happy with the response it's getting so far. We've sent copies to Australia, Canada, The USA and Hong Kong so far which is rather fab.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Review from 'Meyn Mavro' magazine

Another review of the 'Songs of Witchcraft & Magic' CD by Meyn Mavro magazine - "a beautifully produced CD with 15 songs....all of which have elements of strange witchcraft and magic in them...... highly recommended, both for its songs and its detailed sleeve notes." Thanks guys.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Latest News on 'Songs of Witchcraft & Magic'

For those interested in the progress of the CD, it is selling really well since its launch on May 1st.
We know it has been played on:
Radio Scotland
Radio Wales
Radio Derby
Radio Glastonbury
We have also been reliably informed that Mike Harding of BBC's Folk on 2 will be playing a track from the album in the near future.
If you've heard the CD played on any other station, please let us know.

Pete Jennings has given the CD a glowing review in Pentacle Magazine “I have long lectured on the delights of references to magic and witchcraft within British folksong, so this album comes as a treat” ... “Not since the issue of ‘Frost and Fire’ by the Watersons on vinyl has there been such a collection…..” “ The quality of the recordings are excellent, as is the packaging and accompanying booklet of lyrics and notes.”

Mike Howard, of ‘The Cauldron’ said "A fantastic collection of magical and witchy British folk songs...Very highly recommended."

The Hedge Wytch Magazine said “:….great presentation packaging….the songs and ballads are all traditional and are simply and beautifully sung…” “It is a very professional product ….A worthy addition to any witch’s music collection.”

We know that White Dragon have also reviewed the album – we would love it if someone could send us a copy of the review?

A further 30 or so magazines have promised to review the CD – lets hope they are all as good as those received so far!

Sunday, May 13, 2007

T Shirts online

Just to let you know the Museum of Witchcraft t shirts are now available on The Occult Art Company website in an array of sizes including XXL in the ladies v neck.
We will also be at The Beltane Bash on May 27 & 28. I will be sharing a stand with Steve Patterson, woodcarver. Steve is responsible for the carvings on display outside the museum and bull roarers and dark mirrors on sale in the shop. Hopefully we will see some of you there. We will be taking along the new CDs so you can buy one there as well as online or at the museum.

Far From the Sodding Crowd

I sit here in our rather customer free shop with the rain pouring down outside, having just read a fabulous piece on the museum in the rather wonderful new book 'Far From The Sodding Crowd'. It's the latest outing from Robin Halstead, Jason Hazely, Alex Morris & Joel Morris who were responsible for 'Bollocks To Alton Towers' which was on The Sunday Times Top Ten list in 2006. This is their follow up with more amazing & unique places to visit in Britain. As well as featuring the museum it looks at The Shell Grotto in Margate (definitely worth a visit), the Bakelite Museum in Somerset, and The BubbleCar Museum in Cranwell. An extremely varied array of outings indeed. So if anyone is into spending time visiting interesting & unusual places this is the book for you. We met a couple of the authors when they came down last year & what pleasant chaps they were too-obviously very enthusiastic about their subject & rather keen on a pint (which always goes down well in Boscastle). So keep an eye out for the book. Always good to see the museum portrayed positively - hopefully it will improve visitor numbers too.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Quiet week

Things have definitely quietened down after the Easter rush. Traders in Boscastle are saying this is the quietest they have seen it for some years. I must say the car park does look hideous with a huge monstrosity sitting by the entrance. A new toilet block is being built but unfortunately they got the plans a little wrong & it looks more like a half built skyscraper than anything else. Needless to say work has stopped on it while they (NCDC) try to sort the problem out so it looks extremely ugly. Maybe that's putting people off coming, who knows.
Despite this, museum visitors have been fairly steady and the retail side is not too bad. The new fridge magnets are proving a popular addition and I do believe some fun witchy key rings could be making an appearance soon. We've had some fabulous new books donated to the library so we're making the most of this quiet period with a lot of cataloguing and covering. Joyce has also been busy cataloguing some Egyptian artifacts which we've found in the store room. They will be displayed shortly.
The Boscastle Trading Co. is selling the museum t shirts and, by popular demand, we'll be adding some XXL ladies v necks to the mix. The small red v necks with black hazel pentacle are also available again. We'll be up at the Beltane Bash with the new CDs and t shirts so we might see you there.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Cauldron Review

First official review:
"A fantastic collection of magical and witchy British folk songs...Very highly recommended."
The Cauldron magazine

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

CD Selling Well

The new 'Songs of Witchcraft & Magic CD is selling really well so far. Orders have been flooding in website from both the UK & the USA. Great to see our American fans have picked up on the CD so quickly.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

New CD

The eagerly awaited new Museum of Witchcraft CD "Songs of Witchcraft and Magic" ( a collection of traditional British folk songs relating to witchcraft and magic) has arrived. The official launch is the 1st May but you can get a copy now in the museum, The Boscastle Trading Co. Store next door, or online at
The CD is already selling well with many pre orders going out in the post. Watch out for news on reviews coming up in relevant magazines. It's a classy production with the words of each song included, as well as carefully researched notes.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

A Bit of Fun

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that our New Yorker friend, Roger Pratt, would be appearing on The Dave Letterman Show. Here is the link to the YouTube site so you can have a watch - Roger on Letterman. He's on near the end. Handy for Portuguese readers that it has Portuguese subtitles.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

New Shop

Well apologies for the break in transmission over the past couple of weeks. We've been totally frantic with some sudden developments. Those of you who have visited may remember the Cornish Goodies store next door to the museum. The National Trust bought this store in October and had planned to turn it into a tea shop. Unfortunately they could not get it happening in time so the shop was going to remain an empty shell for the season. Never one to miss an opportunity, Graham has managed to persuade the NT to rent us the shop for the season so we have, in 12 days, turned an empty room into a gallery and shop displaying local artist's and craftspeople's work and Fairtrade goods.We also have some of the museum's retail items as the space in the museum is somewhat limited. Currently you can buy MOW t shirts and the Richel collection prints. More will be coming over time. The shop is called The Boscastle Trading Co. so pop in and visit if you're coming down. I'll try to pop a photo in soon.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Pre alert for new CD

It's time to announce the upcoming launch of the new CD which is being produced by The Museum of Witchcraft and Wildgoose Records. I have mentioned it in a previous post but now I can officially reveal the CD cover and list of tracks - shown here. May 1st is the official launch date - if you would like to be one of the first to buy a copy you can pre-order one by emailing The Museum of Witchcraft. When it hits the shelves they will let you know and you can either send a cheque or buy one by visiting The Occult Art Company. Graham has a great love of traditional folk music and, with his connection to the museum, it seems obvious that he should combine his two interests and produce this collection of fascinating witchcraft related folk songs.


We're expanding our collection of witch-related advertising signs and paraphernalia so we were extremely excited to receive this fantastic sign from local Cornish sculptor Rory. We also picked up a fab original Pears soap ad from the 1920s featuring fortune tellers. It was in a charity shop in Lyme Regis. We are looking to replace another Pears soap ad which was lost in the flood. It features a witch flying on a broomstick. If anyone knows where we could get a copy please let us know.

New Prices

Unlike most other museums the Museum of Witchcraft is privately owned and does not receive any grants whatsoever. Regular visitors will know that the entrance fee has always remained as low as possible but this year we need to slightly increase the entrance fee to cover increased costs. Adults entrance fee will now be £3.00 and children and elders £2.00. We feel these prices are still very reasonable. Here is a photo of Mike updating the door sign. You may also note a new 'DONATE' button on the front page of the website. We are also introducing new retail products to give this area a boost. The Occult Art Company has produced some fabulous posters which include the Witch from the Richel images and the ever-popular Wheel of the Year painted by Vivienne Shanley. They were launched at last weekend's Devon and Cornwall Pagan Federation Conference in Kilkhampton. The conference was a great success with record numbers of attendees. The museum opened on the Sunday especially for the conference goers and it was a fabulous day with friendly interested people coming to show their support. Our official opening day for this year is Saturday March 31st.

The Times

A question was recently sent in to The Times: ' Was anyone ever persecuted for witchcraft, and posthumously pardoned?' Our resident historian Joyce Froome answered the question which was printed in The Times on March 2nd. The only pre 20th century case apparently occurred after the Salem witchtrials. Joyce answers the question in slightly more detail. Fame at last for Joyce!!

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Fame Again

How amusing! Being a (sadly) massive Trivial Pursuit fan I've just downloaded it to my computer and found that a question about the museum was on there. Something like 'Which Cornish village's famous Museum of Witchcraft was devastated by floods in 2004?' Lucky for me I was on a piece of pie and got the answer right. We were also sent an email last week telling us that the museum was mentioned on the new TV show 'Hotel Babylon.' Lots of good publicity there we hope. An article in The Guardian will be featuring the museum and some famous witches shortly. Our friend Cassandra Latham was interviewed for the article along with others well known in the field. Not sure when that one's coming out yet. Will let you know if we hear anything. If anyone sees the museum on any TV show or in the papers please let us know as we don't always have our fingers on the media pulse.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Boscastle weather cam

Just wanted to let you know that there is now a Boscastle Weather Cam. Due to complaints from a previous reader about the Dunn St webcam, it was removed by the operator and replaced by this weather cam. If you're coming to visit Boscastle you can now check out the weather situation as it happens. Hopefully Mark won't get any complaints from paranoid seagulls.


For all those with an interest in folk music (and witchcraft) I'd like to give preliminary notice of a new CD which is being compiled by Graham & Joyce (the museum's medieval specialist). Over the last year they have been researching and collecting traditional British folk songs that have a witchcraft theme. Graham has a long association with traditional English folk so he has an extremely good knowledge to draw on. The CD is being released in conjunction with Wildgoose Studios who are well known in the folk music industry. This will be the third of the museum's CDs. The last two chanting CDs were very popular and this one, though very different, is looking like being a great success, (going by the interest we've had aleady). The planned release date is May 1st so watch this space. It will be on sale in the museum and online. There is even a rumour that there will be a secret track performed by a special duo. Interesting!!
Oh, before I go,thanks to HR Mitchell for the positive feedback about the blog. It's nice to know we have your support.

Harbour Update

Thought I'd update you with what's been happening in the harbour as far as digging and building works go. The diggers have reached the bottom of the two pits outside the museum and the opposite side of the river. Around 7 metres (21 feet) down. The plan is to drill a horizontal connection underneath the river between to two pits. Unfortunately, the diggers hit a bit of a snag the other day when the drill bit came up against a large obstacle (probably an extremely hard piece of Cornish spar or quartz) and it has called a temporary halt to the proceedings. At least the constant pecking noise has stopped for a while. It has been driving Graham to distraction - lucky the workmen are so friendly and pleasant otherwise it could be extremely distressing. I'll put some recent pics of the works up soon.

Monday, February 12, 2007

What Else

As I've been talking about all the work that's been going on I should tell you what's been happening.Well all the fibre board ceiling panels have now been double plaster boarded, plastered and painted to comply with fire regulations. This has meant a lot of work and expense but we must keep up to date with health and safety regulations. We have a new window display, featuring the statue of the hare which was found in Cornwall a few years ago and donated to the museum. It's looking really fab in the window as visitors can now see both sides of this interesting sculpture, and it is accompanied by several examples from our witchball collection.
We've put some new wainscoting downstairs - made up from recycled timber - thanks to Dave for 'recovering' it in true Cornish style. We always try to use recycled materials where ever possible. Graham is currently working on a 'new' retail cabinet for the entrance. Stay tuned for more updates on some news regarding the retail part of the museum as well.

Drama in Poppet World

There's so much work going on at the museum at the moment it's no wonder a few accidents happen. As Graham was re panelling the walls in the upstairs gallery his drill slipped and went crashing onto one of the poppet cabinets. The glass shattered and I'm sure the ladies were not very impressed. We had planned to replace the glass with a toughened variety anyway so it just speeded up the process. It makes a rather dramatic photo don't you think?

Saturday, February 10, 2007


Anyone who watches The Dave Letterman Show in the US should look out for a friend of ours who is appearing on the show around Feb 28. Roger Pratt is well known in witchcraft circles in New York & the North East & has helped us out with information regarding artifacts we've had trouble researching. He has a wonderful photographic memory & a wide knowledge of magic and witchcraft which comes in handy for us occasionally. The big question is: will Roger be sporting the moustache & goatee or will he be nude of chin?? Only time will tell.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Notice of an Exravanganza of Words and Music

For all those interested in Cornwall, folklore, the museum, history, and music, let it be known that on March 30 and 31 2007 The Wellington Hotel in Boscastle will host a fabulous weekend that will satisfy all your interests and more. Steve Patterson has put together an extremely interesting programme. On Friday evening March 30, the Cornish band 3 Daft Monkeys will be playing in the bar. This band has recently been on tour with The Levellers and plays a wild mixture of Celtic, Balkan, Gypsy, Cornish World Music. I've seen them before and they are fabulously entertaining as well as extremely accomplished musicians. The Saturday programme of talks runs from 11am till 5 pm upstairs in the Wellington and will consist of the following:

Steve Patterson - Tales of the Museum which includes a history of the museum and a biography of Cecil Williamson
Alan Kent - Parallels in the folklore of Cornwall, Brittany and Galicia. Having just returned from Galicia I'll find this particularly relevant.
Paul Newman - Tales of Tregurthan, stories about the bohemian artist set in 1930's Cornwall including such people as Aleister Crowley and D.H.Lawrence. Paul has recently written a book about this subject.
Paul Bonnington - Ancient Sites in Relation to the Landscape Paul is the National Trust archaeologist and warden for West Penwith with a special interest in ancient sites.

Saturday evening's entertainment will include more music, puppetry, and storytelling.

Tickets for the day are £15.00 on the door and you can reserve a place by calling Steve Patterson on 07941 078975

We'd love to see you there

Monday, February 05, 2007

Pinky & Perky

For those of you who remember the museum's two headed pig, affectionately known as Pinky & Perky, you will now be able to see her/it/them on view at the National Maritime Museum in Falmouth. P & P is on loan for an exhibition of curiosities which will be held this year (dates to be confirmed). During the flood the Maritime Museum was particularly helpful to us especially in storing our collection of over 4,000 library books while we rebuilt the museum, so we wear happy to loan our piggy to them for this interesting exhibit.

New Year Update

Well, the month of January has flown by & all has been action stations at the museum. The new fireproof ceilings are all finished (thanks John & Martin) and the painting is almost complete. Here is a picture of Ron at his decorating best. He should be finished in a day or two. The drilling of the ever deeper hole continues outside. The National Trust ,who bought Cornish Goodies next door, have not done a thing to it all winter but plan to start work on it at the beginning of April. How thoughtful of them!!!!!!!!! Work on the car park opposite The Cobweb has been fast tracked so we're hoping it will be finished before Easter.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Essential work

Here are a couple of pics of John (aka The Boscastle Busker) and (Big) Martin fitting double layers of plaster board to the museum ceilings to comply with fire regulations. (Lovely chest hair lads.)Whist carrying out the annual fire risk assessment, Graham noticed that there may be a potential future breach of regulations. Maintaining an old building to meet modern regulations will always be difficult and expensive but safety must come first so we've enlisted the services of these two local builders to bring the ceilings up to standard. The extra plaster board should give the added benefit of improved sound and heat insulation as well.

Saturday, January 06, 2007


The museum is now closed as of Friday Jan 5 till Easter. We'll let you know the exact date as soon as it's confirmed. I'll continue to put news on as it happens so keep checking the blog for any developments. See you soon.