Two great men of peace who forged a close partnership.
St. Hilary Church and Marazion Quaker Chapel became the Cornish Home for the International Peace Movement from the Great War to the 1930s.
Their search for peace, humanity and love was crystallised in Gerard Collier's book 'Economic Justice,' Lily Collier's diary, Bernard Walke's 'Twenty Years at St. Hilary' and his nativity play which was broadcast to the nation every Christmas by the BBC from 1926 to 1936 with critical acclaim by the author Bernard Shaw.
Gerard Collier lectured in modern history at Birmingham University before moving to Cornwall in 1917 for health reasons. A Quaker who had friendships with the Cadbury family he brought his wide knowledge of peace issues to Cornwall. He travelled to major peace conferences with the International Fellowship for Reconciliation.
'..........Walke went straight for the human in people.' 'Walter Howard Frere, Bishop of Truro' by C.S. Phillips
Father Bernard Walke lived, during his childhood, in the hamlet of Lover on the edge of the New Forest. He made friends with the local craftsmen in the surrounding countryside and become absorbed in their wisdom and folklore. On the New Forest heaths he was impressed by the dignity of a Stag which had outwitted a local hunt. This gave him a reverence for life which became the basis for his pacifism.
Together they attracted many others including W. H. Davies the poet, Tom Attlee brother of Clement Attlee, the Labour Prime Minister and George Bernard Shaw, the author.
We hope to show why the unique partnership between Father Walke and Gerard Collier evolved a depth of common humanity and deep understanding which is vital in our continuing search for identity and meaning in the 21st century.
'Education: to understand understanding' - David Woodrow