New Mayflower Room commemorates Gainsborough’s Pilgrim roots

West Lindsey District Council's former Chairman,Pat Mewi officially opened the Mayflower Room at the Church. EMN-190531-103436001
West Lindsey District Council's former Chairman,Pat Mewi officially opened the Mayflower Room at the Church. EMN-190531-103436001

A room has been opened at the United Reformed Church in Gainsborough to exhibit the history of the Mayflower Pilgrims and their experiences in the area and beyond.

Earlier this month, an event took place to celebrate the opening of the room, with performances from national dance project ‘The Imagination Museum’ forming part of the day.

'The Imagination Museum' EMN-190531-103447001

'The Imagination Museum' EMN-190531-103447001

The event is part of a three-year project leading up to 2020, the 400-year anniversary of the sailing of the Mayflower to the US, a key historical event for communities across the UK, US and the Netherlands.

Many of the passengers on board the Mayflower were from this region.

West Lindsey District Council’s former Chairman, Pat Mewis attended the performance and officially opened the Mayflower Room at the Church.

Dr Anna Scott, Mayflower 400 Officer at West Lindsey District Council, also attended the event, and said: “The new Mayflower Room in the URC is a fantastic community-led addition to telling the local Separatists’ story and how it is connected to Holland and America.

“The ‘Imagination Museum: Mayflower 400’ performances in Gainsborough have been well-received at our two key Pilgrims’ heritage sites.

“We’re looking forward to a special celebration performance in November as part of 2019’s Pilgrims Festival.”

The performances see three eccentric tour guides lead you on a journey through history, using movement, text and music to explore what it was really like for many of the passengers from this area who travelled from England to America aboard the Mayflower in 1620.

Lincolnshire-born choreographer Katie Green says: “I am thrilled to be returning to Lincolnshire to respond to such a significant event in the area’s history.

“This is the very beginning of our Imagination Museum: Mayflower 400 project which starts this year in Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire and will travel via Hampshire to Plymouth in October 2020, in line with the journey that people from this area took 400 years ago.”

Last weekend saw another successful set of Imagination Museum performances at Gainsborough Old Hall, where the dancers performed their Pilgrim story around the historic site, taking visitors along with them on their own Mayflower journey.