Pilgrim Trails: ‘Our bid has been submitted!’

Welcome to our second newsletter for the Pilgrim Roots Heritage Project – to download a copy of the newsletter click here

Our Bid has been submitted!

On Friday 25th May the project team at Bassetlaw District Council hit the send button and electronically transferred the equivalent of four years hard work to the East Midlands Office of Heritage Lottery.

The Activity Plan alone is almost 200 pages of plans, statistics, projections and activities that will take place over the next three years.

We won’t know if we are successful until the end of September 2018 but we feel confident that, irrespective of the outcome, we have done everything we possibly could to show why HLF should invest in this ‘once in a century opportunity’ as the 400th anniversary of the Mayflower reaching Plymouth Massachusetts approaches.

So are we planning to sit and relax over the summer?

Absolutely not! We have to be confident that our bid will be approved by Heritage Lottery and so we will be preparing tenders for contractors, getting job descriptions approved for two new members of staff, preparing media packs and all the other details that will enable us to hit the ground running as soon as we hear.

We will also be planning our very popular Illuminate events and more details of these will be revealed soon. Members of the project team will be out and about at events over the summer as part of Bassetlaw District Council’s Big Conversation Engagement Events.

Find us at Ranskill Scarecrow Festival, Kings Park 80th Birthday Celebrations in Retford and of course Scrooby Show. We will continue to publish this newsletter on a regular basis as we wait with baited breath!

Mayflower 400 Compact Meeting comes to North Nottinghamshire

The Mayflower 400 Compact Partnership is the national body that has been working towards the year-long programme of events to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the Pilgrims journey to the New World. Led by Plymouth, the partnership comprises 11 destinations in UK that have connections to the Mayflower story plus partners in Leiden, Holland and Plymouth, USA.

In the Roots region, Bassetlaw, Doncaster, West Lindsey, Boston and Immingham are partners . We meet regularly to discuss plans and share ideas such as putting joint bids together to Arts Council England for example, for touring exhibitions and large scale events for 2020. Bassetlaw District Council is delighted to host the June meeting of Mayflower 400 and the venue we have chosen is the delightful Hodsock Priory.

This is particularly appropriate as its owner George Buchanan is also Chair of North Nottinghamshire’s Business Improvement District who have identified Mayflower 400 as one of their key opportunities over the next 5 years – and this support is an important factor in our own HLF bid’s evidence of sustainability. We look forward to welcoming our partners from as far afield as Dartmouth, Worcester and Southwark to North Nottinghamshire.

What did we learn?

A huge thank you to everyone who took part in our consultation exercise. We engaged with over 2500 people in total at public events, parish council meetings, visiting schools and asking people to participate in on-line surveys. We really enjoyed talking to you and were overwhelmed by the positive support for the project.

We specifically asked if you liked our themes of MIGRATION, TOLERANCE and FREEDOM and this was a resounding yes. We asked what aspects of the story were you most interested in, to help us decide on interpretation at the museum, on trail boards and the website. You told us you wanted more emphasis on our own local stories and the events that led the Separatists to flee, firstly to Holland and then on to America.

And we also asked if you liked the design examples that will be the ‘brand’ for our Pilgrim Roots activities. They received very positive comments from our consultees. We plan to repeat these events once we know we have succeeded with our application as we look forward to showing you how proposals have changed into very definite plans.

Nottinghamshire County Council confirm £55k funding boost for Nottinghamshire PILGRIM heritage COMMEMORATIONS

Nottinghamshire County Council has pledged a further £55,000 for events to mark the county’s Pilgrim roots, as local and national plans are put in place to roll out the red carpet for an expected surge in visitors from the United States in 2020.

Councillor Kay Cutts, Leader of the Council said: “The 400th anniversary countdown of the Mayflower ship sailing from England and arriving in America provides an exciting opportunity for Nottinghamshire to commemorate its Pilgrim ancestors and to share their inspirational story with the world.

“Many places around the UK and further afield have links to the Pilgrims, but Nottinghamshire was the place where it all began. It gives me great pride that the amazing chain of events, which has had such a huge impact on American history, started right here in Nottinghamshire.

“Nottinghamshire is a place of legend, famous for its history and unique heritage. It is a place of ambition, where people are industrious, pioneering and creative. It is a place where business thrives, creating opportunities and prosperity.

“We have a fourfold vision for our county – to make it a great place to raise a family, to fulfil ambitions, to enjoy later life, and to start and grow a business. Against this backdrop, Nottinghamshire County Council is committed to ensuring our area’s contribution to the impact of the Mayflower’s journey is recognised and fully maximised for generations to come.”

The County Council is contributing £25,000 towards a Heritage Lottery Fund in support of activities led bid by the Pilgrim Roots Partnership, which includes the County and District Councils, tourism bodies and voluntary groups.

The partnership is hoping to secure £450,000 in Lottery funding for its ‘The Pilgrim Roots: The Separatists Story, Mayflower 400 and beyond’ project, which includes plans for:

  • a regional trail linking key Pilgrim heritage sites from Retford to Gainsborough;
  • a dedicated Pilgrim Roots gallery at Bassetlaw Museum in Retford;
  • a range of digital resources dedicated to the story, including a website, and;
  • nine interpretation panels located at key sites, with supporting Wi-Fi access.

A further £30,000 has also been committed for activities to mark Nottinghamshire’s wider association with the separatist’s story and religious heritage to add to the tourism offer around the 2020 anniversary. These include bespoke interpretation and exhibitions development at key sites, educational engagement in schools through a Thanksgiving themed school meal, and a Nottinghamshire-focused marketing campaign.

Councillor Cutts added: “The County Council has been working alongside local partners and in other parts of the country with Pilgrim links on exciting plans for the run-up to 2020 and “The 400th anniversary offers the potential for massive economic, tourism, educational and cultural benefits for Nottinghamshire, which the County Council is determined to maximise.”

Did you know?

Passenger William Mullins from Dorking was a shoemaker by profession. His baggage consisted of over 250 shoes and 13 pairs of boots.

In 1979 US Ambassador Kingman Brewster, a descendant of William Brewster, laid the foundation stone for Scrooby Village Hall. In 2015, Wrestling Brewster, 11th generation descendent of William, unveiled a plaque in the same Village Hall, marking his visit following in the footsteps of his ancestor.

Poor William Butten, who some think came from Austerfield, although this is unproven, was called “a youth” by Gov. William Bradford in his passenger list of the Mayflower. He left as a servant with the family of Dr. Samuel Fuller. He was the only Mayflower passenger to die during the voyage itself – just three days before land was sighted.