Gainsborough Old Hall hosted a spectacular evening as part of the Mayflower 400 Compact Launch.
Eighty civic leaders and distinguished guests from destinations across the UK, Holland and USA attended the event where they enjoyed a medieval banquet in the Great Hall, the historic building that sheltered the separatists in the years before their voyage on the Mayflower in 1620.
Representatives from destinations across the UK, Holland and USA were presented with copies of a modern day compact, which signify their commitment to work collaboratively to mark the 400th anniversary of the sailing of the Mayflower in 2020. The anniversary is celebrated by many in the US as the beginning of a national legacy, and in the UK as the beginning of an enduring alliance between the two countries.
Samantha Mellows, Gainsborough Town Manager, said “We were delighted to welcome so many guests from the UK and abroad to Gainsborough and host the launch of the Mayflower 400 Compact in Gainsborough Old Hall where some of the Mayflower pilgrims met in secret prior to their voyage.
“The venue was a perfect setting to remember those individuals whilst marking the beginning of our own journey to 2020.”
Victoria Mason-Hines, Site Co-ordinator at Gainsborough Old Hall, said: “We were proud to welcome so many guests to Gainsborough Old Hall and hope that they return to visit us again in the future.
“Gainsborough Old Hall is an intrinsic part of the Mayflower story and as such, we were delighted to host the event and share our story with so many.”
The evening’s event which was supported by Gainsborough Town Council, Lincs County Council and West Lindsey District Council has firmly placed Gainsborough and Lincolnshire on the map and recognised the area as an integral player in the Mayflower 400 project team.
The event followed a series of meetings to progress the project and a coach tour of pilgrim origins sites, curated by local historian Sue Allen, which included the nearby villages of Scrooby and Babworth.