23rd January 2020

Mayflower 400

2020 marks 400 years since the famous Mayflower set sail across the Atlantic Ocean on its pioneering voyage to the ‘New World’. This year, an exciting programme of events has been commissioned to celebrate this magnificent moment in history and the ship that became a cultural icon across the world.

A year-long celebration will ensue, connecting all the integral towns and cities across the UK that make up the Mayflower trail. Events across the country will educate, commemorate and celebrate all the places that played such an important role in the Mayflower’s journey. One such important location is Dartmouth, South Devon. 

The Mayflower and Speedwell set sail from Southampton with its precious cargo of pilgrims, however, they didn’t get far before the Speedwell began to leak. The ships were forced to divert to Dartmouth for urgent repairs, arriving on the 23rd August 1620. While repairs were made to the Speedwell in the harbour, the Mayflower moored on the River Dart bedside what became known as Pilgrim Hill.

There are plenty of cultural, artistic and historical events to enjoy across the year in the picturesque town of Dartmouth. The town combines a rich heritage with vibrant modern shops and restaurants as well as an active sailing community. Get involved with the local community and enjoy the active programme of events.

Some particular highlights include:

– The Dartmouth Heritage Trail which connects 13 historic locations across the town, allowing you to follow in the pilgrim’s footsteps. 3 trails including the town, packhorse and castle trail will allow you to visit significant historic locations and get a deeper understanding of 17th Century Dartmouth.

– A variety of maritime events across the summer months of 2020 for all to get involved in including events such as the Dartmouth Mayflower 400 Classics Race and the ASTO Small Ships Race.

– The Grand Dart River Pageant will kick off the core week of Mayflower activities in the town of Dartmouth on Sunday 30th August. Following on from the annual Dartmouth Royal Regatta, one of the largest sailing events in the UK, the River Pageant will include ships of all shapes, sizes and colours for a dazzling display of maritime beauty, it’s certainly an event to add to your calendar this year!

– Mayflower Week will follow the River Pageant and run from the 30th August until the 5th September. It will include numerous festivities including British and American live music and a screening of short films specially commissioned by the programme.

Mayflower 400 commemorations and events are free to the public and all are invited to take part in the celebrations. Dartmouth is one of South Devon’s most popular coastal towns, and with a full schedule of events for 2020, it’s the perfect year for a fun-filled visit.

Galmpton Touring Park is perfectly situated overlooking the River Dart, a fantastic location to make the most of the exquisite views during the wealth of boating events taking place this summer. Consider one of our much sought-after seasonal pitches and come and go whenever you wish, allowing you to enjoy the 400th anniversary of the Mayflower and all of the events all season. Or, pitch up your tent or motorhome and make the most of our touring facilities. Book your 2020 break today by visiting the Galmpton Touring Park website.