2020 sees the 400th anniversary of The Mayflower’s voyage to the New World in 1620.
The Mayflower set sail on September 16th 1620 carrying the first Pilgrims from England to the New World. After a gruelling 10 weeks at sea, the Mayflower, with 102 passengers and a crew of about 30, reached America, dropping anchor near the tip of Cape Cod on November 11, 1620.
It is believed that the Mayflower was built in Harwich sometime before the year 1600 and was commanded and part-owned by her master, Captain Christopher Jones.
Jones is believed to have been born in Harwich in 1570. He lived in the town and was married twice in the port. Today, you can look around Captain Jones’s former home on King’s Head Street, which has been turned into a tourist attraction as part of the Mayflower 400 commemorations.
Harwich’s visitor trails highlight the town’s Mayflower heritage, set against the beautiful backdrop of the River Stour.
An inspiring sculpture depicting the Mayflower ship now stands in Parkeston. The piece of public art was commissioned to promote Harwich as one of the key Mayflower 400 destinations.
You can also find a willow sculpture depicting The Mayflower at Harwich Green. Artists Emma and Adam of Willow Phoenix were commissioned to do the piece by Tendring District Council.
Visit Mayflower 400 to watch a series of Virtual Voyages videos as part of the international Mayflower commemorations.
Highlighted below is arts organisation MBD‘s remarkable new experience, which allows audiences to put on a Virtual Reality Headset from the comfort of their own home and find themselves transported back to the 17th century.