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Worcester Cathedral is marking the 400th anniversary of the voyage of The Mayflower sailing to America and also the life of Pilgrim Father Edward Winslow.  

Join expert speakers to explore the world of the Pilgrim Fathers and the new ones they forged.

The Mayflower: Faith and Freedom Conference will be held at Worcester Cathedral and in The King's School theatre over two days on Friday 17 and Saturday 18 April 2020.

Click here to see the programme for the two days. 

Tickets for the two day conference cost £186.00 per person, including VAT, see below for details of what is included in the conference.

To book a place at the conference download the booking form here, fill it out and return it with full payment by Friday 3 April 2020, to events@worcestercathedral.org.uk or post the form to the Operational Manager, Worcester Cathedral, Chapter Office, 8 College Yard, Worcester, WR1 2LA. Include a stamped addressed envelope, or add 50p to the ticket price, to receive your tickets by post. 

Payment can be made either by BACS, by cheque (made payable to Worcester Cathedral) or by credit card in the Cathedral shop (in person only). Full details are on the booking form, including options to attend for just one of the days.  

Included in the two day conference -
This unique conference has been specially designed and arranged, with seven expert speakers taking part. They include Darren Oldridge, Professor of Early Modern History at the University of Worcester, who will introduce some of the big themes of the Fathers’ story.  Author and Independent scholar Rebecca Fraser will speak about ‘The Mayflower Generation: The Winslow family and the fight for the New World’. We also look forward to welcoming Prof. Ann Hughes, Keele University; Nick Bunker, Author; Dr Catherine Armstrong, Loughborough University; Dr Naomi Pullin, Warwick University, and from America, Paula Peters, Independent Wampanoag Scholar.
The talks over the two days will be in the King’s School Theatre. They also include ‘Who were the Pilgrims? The material, cultural and commercial lives of the English emigrants; ‘Politics and social life in early Stuart England’; ‘The lost world of the Pilgrims’; ‘The experience of women in England and America in the 1600s’; ‘A critical backstory to colonization: The cultural impact of the emigrants on the indigenous Wampanoag community’.

Also included in the cost of the two day conference is -

  • A drinks reception on the evening of Friday 17 April, held in the dramatic setting of the Cathedral's Nave Crossing.
  • A light lunch on both days of the conference in the early 12th century round Chapter House, off the Cathedral Cloister.
  • Tea or coffee during the mid morning breaks on both days and during Friday afternoon.
  • The opportunity during the conference to attend up to three tours - The highlights of the historic Cathedral, a Tudor and Stuart tour, and a chance to visit the Medieval Library to see some of the rare documents and books (see more details below about the visit to the library). 
  • The opportunity to visit the school room that Pilgrim Father Edward Winslow attended from the age of 11 in 1601 to 1611. At that time The King’s School was situated in College Hall, off the Cathedral Cloister. College Hall is a former monastic refectory and is still used by both The King's School and Cathedral today.  

To end the conference there will be a Conference Dinner on the evening of Saturday 18 April. Click here to see the Conference dinner menu. The dinner is an extra charge of £35.00 including VAT.

Guided Tours of the Cathedral Library for those attending the conference -
Worcester Cathedral Library was also once a location of the school room for what is now King’s School Worcester. Today it houses one of the countries most important collections of medieval books, manuscripts and music. Attendees of the Mayflower: Faith and Freedom Conference will have the opportunity have a tour of the library to see rare documents such as the 17th Century register listing Edward Winslow’s admission to King’s School; Purchas’ Pilgrims stories of the early settlers in America, including accounts by Edward Winslow; A 17th Century French map of America and French royal atlas; other documents and books from around the time that Edward Winslow was at the Cathedral. There will also be books that were published by John Beale  who employed Edward Winslow, copies of books that match those that were owned by some of the Pilgrims, Bibles of that era, Mandates from King James I to the Cathedral relating to men such as Henry Bright, who taught Edward Winslow, examples of seventeenth century music books, and books by Puritans of that century such as John Milton, Richard Baxter and Lucy Hutchinson. 

*Please note that the library has no disabled access and is accessed via a steep spiral staircase.  

If you cannot make the conference but are interested to have a tour of the Cathedral's Library or a Tudor and Stuart tour of the Cathedral on another occasion, contact visits@worcestercathedral.org.uk to enquire or to register your interest for the next available tours.

Group tours -
We also offer Mayflower related tour packages for groups. The Cathedral is an ideal stop for heritage lovers with it's history going back fourteen centuries. Group tours interested in Mayflower can include:-

  • A Tudor and Stuart tour of the Cathedral or a Historic tour of the Cathedral, that includes a visit to the the royal tombs. 
  • A tour of the Catheral's Medieval library, featuring books from the time of Edward Winslow. The Library houses one of the world's most important collections of medieval books and music.

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Click here to book a group tour of the Cathedral and/or the Cathedral's Medieval Library*. 

Click here to order your Mayflower 400 official commemorative publication.

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