The National Lottery Heritage Fund has granted £98,900 to fund a series of projects to support the Mayflower 400 anniversary programme in Southampton.
This, along with a previous award of £269,000 from Arts Council England, matched funding from Southampton City Council, and investment from Go! Southampton, Paris Smith and the Barker-Mill Foundation, means that the Council will be delivering, with the support of partners across the city, a rich and varied cultural programme for 2020.
This will be further enhanced by partner-led projects, including large-scale community performances at the Mayflower Theatre; year-long programmes at both John Hansard and Showcase galleries; and numerous community-led pieces.
Altogether, investment in the anniversary programme, so far, well exceeds £1m.
Thanks to National Lottery players, The National Lottery Heritage Fund support will facilitate the development and delivery of six projects.
These will include talks, events and school visits by Wampanoag scholar Paula Peters; ESOL resources for refugee groups; a city-wide schools' programme tied to School of Sanctuary; and an oral history programme led by City Eye, capturing the stories of BAME and migrant elders. These stories will then inspire a film programme for 60 young people.
Community art workshop as part of the Solent Showcase Displacement series
Communities will also be able to explore their own heritage stories as part of the Mayflower anniversary through a community small grants programme.
Other heritage projects supported by the Council include exhibitions at SeaCity Museum, Tudor House Museum & Garden, and the restoration of the Mayflower Monument.
Stuart McLeod, Director London & South at The National Lottery Heritage Fund, said: "An internationally significant time in history with many local stories and legacies to share, Mayflower 400 offers an incredible moment to explore the heritage of Southampton and beyond. Thanks to money raised by National Lottery players, we are delighted to support this programme."
Caterina Loriggio, Mayflower 400 Anniversary Director, added: "As part of a fantastic line-up of events, Southampton's Mayflower 400 heritage programme is designed to reset what is understood by local history, broadening the City's heritage offer to be more inclusive.
"Programming stories of migrant communities, of refugees, of the Wampanoag people, acknowledges a tangible gap in the telling of both the Mayflower and Southampton's story. We hope that, as a result, a wider range of people will feel encouraged to get involved."
Paula Peters holding the Wampum Belt
Southampton will be the first city to approach a Mayflower anniversary through the lens of migration. The programme, which runs from March to November, aims to reconnect communities to our maritime past, to tell stories of journeys, migration, identity and sanctuary - building empathy and greater cross-cultural understanding. Amongst the projects that have been announced are:
Future Cargo - a new outdoor dance and binaural sound performance by Requardt & Rosenberg.
Towers of Light – a large-scale light art project at Weston Shore delivered by Audacious, as part of Illuminate 2020, the national finale of the Mayflower programme.
Narratives of Displacement - an exciting transformation of Showcase Gallery led by disabled artist-in-residence Rachel Gadsden.
Three new productions commissioned by Mayflower Theatre, along with their hosting of Southampton Music Hub’s A Musical Odyssey (this week), and the Welsh National Opera’s new piece, Migrations, which will conclude the year.
The Mayflower Theatre in Southampton
Cllr Kaur, Cabinet Member for Homes and Communities, said: "Cultural partners across the city have come together to develop and deliver a unique programme of events which will not only be both exciting and engaging for visitors and local residents alike, but also add to civic pride and community cohesion.
"The programme offers over 400 opportunities to get involved – whether you are a singer, dancer, historian, local resident, or community group. We hope that the whole city gets behind this commemorative year and really shows the rest of the UK and the world, what Southampton is all about!"
Tim Jobling, Barker-Mill Foundation Trustee, added: "When we heard about the plans for Mayflower 400 we knew we had to be involved, especially as the Barker-Mill family were successful merchants in Southampton when the Mayflower arrived in the city.
"It’s a unique opportunity to commemorate not only the legacy of the passengers and crew who undertook the journey and to highlight their stories and heritage, but to also continue to extend the legacy of the Barker-Mill family and their links with the city of Southampton."
Narratives of Displacement
Nick Vaughan, Senior Partner, Paris Smith LLP, commented: "We are delighted to be part of the Council’s programme to commemorate Mayflower 400 and the diversity, heritage and culture of the city. We hope that there will be something for everyone to participate in and enjoy."
Phil Gibby, Area Director, South West, Arts Council England, added: "We are thrilled to award over £269,000 to Southampton City Council for their Mayflower 400 cultural programme through National Lottery Project Grants.
"This major city-wide programme will bring world-class artists and events to Southampton, furthering the city’s reputation as a cultural destination. The project will use culture and creativity to reconnect communities to their maritime past and enrich cross-cultural understanding."
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