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flower Trail App has been created for smart phones and there’ll soon be food offers throughout the town cost- ing £20.20 (2020 marking the 400 anniversary year). Teams across Dartmouth are also working hard to


create important items, which will take pride of place during the main celebration week next year. A local man is building a model Mayflower ship with the help of students from South Devon Marine Academy. They’re using shipbuilding techniques similar to those around in the 17th century. Sliced through the middle, you’ll be able to get a taste of what life would have been like in the belly of the ship. When it’s finished this will take pride of place in the visitor centre or the museum. Elsewhere students from Dart- mouth Academy are working with a local artist to create a sculpture of a Pilgrim made from galvanized steel which will appear on the town’s trails. Finally, thousands of pennants (commemorative flags) are being carefully stitched by crafty local ladies with images of ships, anchors, Dartmouth landmarks and American place names. The team have over four thousand flags in total - a call on social media asked for any donations and people from around the world started stitching! They’ve had pennants come in from our fellow Dartmothians in America, (Dartmouth, Mas- sachusetts) and from as far afield as New Zealand! The finished flags will be hung across the town; on


railings, ferries, fountains and on the bandstand. Laura says it’s great to see everyone using their skills to help with this crucial project: “We’ve been amazed by the amount of support out there. People want to promote Dartmouth and commemorate its important maritime history.” Unlike other towns involved, the Dartmouth Mayflower400 team comprises entirely of volunteers.


“They are just as


excited over there as we are here”


Di says this shows the local commitment: “Other places have bigger cash injections through businesses and local authorities and a large amount of manpower. We just have our small but dedicated team and I think we are doing so well. We are definitely punching above our weight.” Di has been over to America twice: “Their Dartmouth is a small city and funnily enough they call our Dart- mouth the same – ‘I love your city of Dartmouth’ they constantly tell us! I have found the Americans welcoming, wonderful people, with big hearts. They are just as excited over there as we are here.” Di says many Americans take their


ancestry really seriously. “There are all kinds of genealogy tours and holi- day companies. People really want to


know about their history, and then try and follow the footsteps of their relatives.” Laura recently organised events for a group of


Americans who came to visit Dartmouth. “Many of them were Mayflower descendents, who can trace their family tree back to the passengers on the ship. They absolutely loved visiting the town. They enjoyed listening to our history talks and would hang on every word. They adored the old buildings like the Royal Castle, Butterwalk and Bayards Cove Inn. Because we actually have buildings that would have been around in 1620 they think it’s like stepping back in time. We are hoping to see plenty more visitors, our town is a living history book and we need to show it off.”


If you want to get involved whether that’s lead-


ing a trail around the town, creating a pennant, or supporting a project contact the team through the website www.dartmouthmayflower400.uk


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