Flight of The Separatists

Saturday 17 July 2021, 10am to 4pm

Gainsborough Old Hall, Parnell Street, Gainsborough, DN21 2NB

FREE Event

The ‘Flight of the Separatists’ event marks the town’s connection to the Pilgrims’ story.

In May 1608, some of the Pilgrim Separatists fled from the town on a barge up the River Trent in search of religious freedom. Others made their way overland to an isolated place along the coast near Immingham. There, they met a Dutch ship in order to flee the country. Many of the men escaped, while their wives and children were left behind for a time, after their attempt to escape was noticed by the authorities. Eventually, they were all reunited in Amsterdam.

The story of their escape from Gainsborough isn’t well known – find out more from the PilgrimAGE blog  which tells the stories of the Pilgrims’ journeys from England to Holland and then on to America on the Mayflower in 1620.

Pilgrim period historical re-enactors will be setting up camp in the Old Hall’s grounds. There will be free demonstrations of activities from that time throughout the day, including rope making, surgery, music, candle and pottery making, felt hat making, toys and games.

Visitors will be able to enjoy free performances by Rhubarb Theatre during the afternoon at 1.30pm, 2.30pm and 3.30pm. Please bring a blanket and come to sit and watch!

Find out more about the Pilgrims’ history from the Pilgrim Roots heritage project and visit the temporary Pilgrims’ exhibition, which will be on display and free to view in the Old Hall’s West Range.
(Visitor numbers will be managed to ensure social distancing and we will follow guidance on permitted numbers of visitors. NB: Please bring a face covering.)

Gainsborough Old Hall is now managed by English Heritage and has reopened after extensive renovations and improvements to the Hall’s facilities.
Access to the special event in the grounds and the Hall’s West Range is free and no booking is needed. However, the usual admission charges apply for entry to the Hall itself and visitors need to pre-book their tickets (Find out more here.)

Visitors may use the café without needing an admission ticket.

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This event has been made possible as part of Gainsborough’s Mayflower 400 programme with thanks to funding from West Lindsey District Council, Lincolnshire County Council, Gainsborough Town Council, Arts Council England and the National Lottery Heritage Fund.