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Anna Maria Fox Birthday Year

Update: click here for the special commemorative programme, created for the festive finale event in celebration of Anna Maria Fox’s 200th birthday…

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Celebrating the 200th anniversary of Falmouth’s most-famous philanthropist

Scary Little Girls kicks off a year of events celebrating the trailblazing legacy of Anna Maria Fox, founder of the Royal Cornwall Polytechnic Society

2016 marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of Anna Maria Fox, a staunch advocate of Cornish innovation and culture, who co-founded what is now the Royal Cornwall Polytechnic Society, aged just 17.

In celebration of her remarkable life and legacy, Cornish production hub, Scary Little Girls, will be hosting a number of exciting events, exhibitions, and performances to be held in and around Falmouth, throughout the year.

The year-long programme of events, funded by the Heritage Lottery, will see Scary Little Girls collaborate with respected local institutions including Falmouth University, The Royal Polytechnic Society, and Glendurgan Gardens.

Rebecca Mordan, Artistic Director of Scary Little Girls said: “Anna Maria Fox’s legacy is all around us in Falmouth, but the woman herself isn’t as well known. We are working with local organizations to preserve and celebrate her life.

“Fox’s hopes for the development of science, the arts and culture in Cornwall are, today, realised by our local artists, scientists, and her own family. With these anniversary events, we hope to not only do her memory justice, but also explore how science and art are still thriving in Cornwall today.

“The lack of women in science has been a hot topic the past few years. Anna Maria Fox conceived and co-founded the first ever Polytechnic institute, right here in Falmouth – the word polytechnic didn’t even exist until then! Such an inspirational figure for our young scientists and entrepreneurs deserves to be celebrated.”

The project will commence on the evening of February 20th, with a special birthday celebration. Members of the public are invited to join a rich cultural assembly. This will include local choirs performing Quaker hymns and popular Cornish classics for the audience to join in with; professional actors giving readings from the colourful Fox family diaries; leaders from different faiths talking about Falmouth’s religious and cultural heritage and members of the Fox family in conversation about Anna Maria and her influence.

The birthday celebration – to which everyone is invited – commences at 6.45pm on February 20th in Falmouth’s King Charles the Martyr Church. Attendance is free, but guests are urged to arrive early to avoid disappointment.

On 24th February, children from Mawnan Smith Primary School will visit the Quaker Burial Ground and lay some flowers on her grave. This will be a private ceremony.

If you or a friend have a story regarding Anna Maria Fox’s legacy, please email Scary Little Girls at info@scarylittlegirls.co.uk.

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