Mayflower Public Update Meeting

Harleston’s Future held a public meeting on Thursday 14 November, to explain what is happening with our ‘Mayflower 400 in Harleston’ programme. This is part of celebrations across the country in to mark the 400 year anniversary of the sailing of the Mayflower ship to America, and the important role Harleston played in this significant point in history.

There was a very good turn out for this meeting, with representatives from the both Harleston Town Council and South Norfolk County Council, the Business Forum, Harleston Information Plus, Harleston Players, Redenhall Church, U3A, the Camera Club, and many local businesses and residents. There were of course people from the Harleston's Future groups of Heritage, Events, Film and Environment. All in all a very good level of interest and support for this very exciting opportunity.

The programme for the celebrations was explained. There will be launch ceremony on Thanksgiving Day, Thursday 28 November in St Johns Church with an explosion of 400 origami ships sailing along the rafters. These have been coloured and created by pupils of the CE Primary School, so please do take an opportunity to pop along and have a look at this wonderful display while it is sailing in early December.

There will be a FREE treasure trail around town which brings together the Mayflower Pilgrim and Christmas themes. A series of twelve images will be on display in shop windows around town, find them all, count the Christmas Socks and Santa Hats and enter your answer on line [here] to have a change to win a £20 Harleston Voucher. This is a new concept, a voucher which can be used in participating shops around town. It is designed to keep Harleston money in Harleston, to help our local economy. Click


for more details.

There will be a special play, written by local playwright Eileen Ryan and performed by own very own Harleston Players, 1620: A New World Odyssey. This will be performed during July 2020 while we are welcoming a group of visitors from America who are actually descended from the Fuller family who left Harleston and boarded the Mayflower ship almost 400 years ago. We look forward to meeting our VIP guest and showing them our wonderful Harleston, along with the many attractions of our local area.

There are many many more things planned. A model boat race along the River Waveney, a competition for the best Mayflower boat built out of everyday junk, a new walk to recreate the 1600 Harleston of the Fullers, our local Choir will sign the Mayflower Anthem which was specially written for the National Mayflower 400 celebrations, the Harleston and Waveney Festival will have a Mayflower them (there are some super things planned for that one), and we are aplanning a day trip to London to see the Mayflower sites in our capital city. More details of these and others will follow, so please bookmark our website and keep looking back for more news.

If you would have more ideas or would like to help with anything please send an email to, we would love to hear from you.