2020 marks the 400 year anniversary of the historic Mayflower voyage in 1620 from England to America, which carried the Pilgrims, some seeking religious freedom, others a fresh start, to a new life across the Atlantic.
The link between Chorley and the Mayflower voyage comes from Military Officer Myles Standish, who is believed to have been born and lived in Duxbury, Chorley. Myles played an integral part in the administration and defense of the Plymouth Colony and was the founder of Duxbury, Massachusetts. Much work has been done over the years to confirm his birthplace; his origins have long been the subject of historical debate.
Prior to the Mayflower’s departure from Plymouth, England, Mayflower history was written in many towns and cities. The trail includes, amongst others, Chorley, Southampton, City of London, Plymouth England and Provincetown and Plymouth, USA. All the locations play a key part in the story of the Mayflower and the people involved.
The Myles Standish 2020 Working Group, in collaboration with Chorley Council, have been instrumental in creating a programme of events commemorating Myles Standish’s role in the momentous journey. Set up several years ago, the group have been busy compiling vital information to prove the part the Standishes played in Chorley’s history. This year will see a wide range of events taking place in Chorley, including drama and music performances, film screenings and a 4 July Pageant.
You can find out more about the national Mayflower 400 commemorations at www.Mayflower400uk.org
Discover Chorley’s history on foot by following one of the two unique trail walks that have been mapped around key areas in Duxbury, linked to Myles Standish and the Mayflower Voyage.
Copies of the Myles Standish Commemorative Booklet can be purchased for £2 at the following locations in Chorley: Chorley Council’s Union Street Offices, Primrose Gardens reception, Ebb and Flow Bookshop, St. Laurence’s Church, Chorley Library, Birkacre Garden Centre, Gilling Dod Architects and Nineteen Bar & Kitchen.