Mayflower Pilgrims Roots and Lincoln Cathedral with 'Pilgrims & Prophets'

This tour provides a day of contrasts as we first explore the development of the 'Mayflower' separatists from their roots in a puritan refusal to conform to rules over worship.

After the villages and country churches of the Pilgrims, finish the day with Choral Evensong at magnificent Lincoln and ask yourself, 'What would the Pilgrims have thought of it?'

Whatever the answer – it will be a memorable experience.


Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire

Tour provider

Pilgrims & Prophets Christian Heritage Tours

Contact and booking


Babworth Church

The full-day Mayflower Pilgrims tour starts with a visit to historic Worksop Priory, the home of radical puritan Richard Bernard, and the birthplace of Mary Williams, who founded Rhode Island with her husband, Roger.

Here, your guide will explain the background to the puritan revolt against the Tudor Church policy, but also tell stories of the crusades, Protestant martyrs and the legend of the Queen’s glove.

You'll then visit the woodland church of Babworth (subject to accessibility), the spiritual home of the 'Mayflower' congregation, where Richard Clifton preached a Gospel message that drew William Brewster, William Bradford and many others to hear him – breaking the law of the time.

You will visit Scrooby, William Brewster’s home, and a puritan church for many years before the turbulent events of 1607/08 drove the 'Separatists' out of England. Sit in the church where Brewster repeated Clifton’s sermons and view the remains of his manor house.

Next up is a visit to Austerfield, Bradford’s home, to see the ancient church of St Helena and its beautiful 'Pilgrim' windows, the font where he was christened and his manor house.

You'll then travel to Gainsborough to stand on the riverside, from which the Pilgrim women and children set off by boat on their journey to Amsterdam, Leiden and America. Here, John Smyth has his own congregation and we visit the medieval Old Hall where, 150 years later, another rebellious cleric preached – John Wesley.

If schedule permits, you can also call in at Sturton-le-Steeple – an extraordinary village that within a few years gave birth to the martyr John Lassells, to John Smyth the founder of the English Baptists, and to John Robinson – ‘pastor of the Pilgrims.’

The day finishes at magnificent Lincoln Cathedral, where you can enjoy choral evensong 1 in a spectacular setting. It might be the complete opposite of the Pilgrims' preferences – but it is still a memorable event to enjoy!

Lincoln Cathedral

Tour highlights

  • Expert religious heritage tour guides
  • Mayflower history and Cathedral worship – a day of contrasts
  • Enjoy Evensong at Lincoln Cathedral

Customisable Options

Pilgrims and Prophets can arrange additional local excursions and experiences as part of your tour. Please ask for details and prices when you make your booking enquiry.

  • Cream tea at Hodsock Priory.
  • Lincoln Cathedral choral evensong
  • Traditional English bell-ringing
  • Real ale beer-tasting
  • Europe’s largest antiques market
  • Sherwood Forest 'Red Bus' Tour

More about the package

Price: From £150 for full-day tour - excluding transport, attraction entry, church donations and lunch.

Group size: Up to seven people.

Duration: 10 hours.

Special equipment needed: Comfortable shoes and warm clothes (as the churches can sometimes be cold).

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