Lantern parades come to Retford

by | 5 November 2017 | Community Event, Retford

Tuesday 21st November marks this year’s Illuminate events in Retford. This will be the third year that Illuminate will commemorate the sailing of the Mayflower Pilgrim Families’ journey to the New World, as part of the countdown to 2020, the 400th anniversary. Gainsborough’s events take place on Wednesday 22nd November.

Working with Transported, from Boston, as part of the Pilgrim Roots consortium, Bassetlaw District Council and West Lindsey District Council, have been able to obtain funding from Arts Council England. This money is being used to support workshops with schools and members of the public to stage community-based lantern parades as part of this year’s Illuminate events.

For the first time as part of Illuminate, Retford will see a lantern parade walking down Carolgate to the Market Square, starting at 5.00pm (registration 4.30pm). Schools around Retford are currently being involved in artist-led workshops to build lanterns.

In Gainsborough, schools have also been helping build lanterns and, on Wednesday 22nd November, the parade will start at 5.00pm (registration at 4.30pm) at the top of Silver Street and will progress to the Market Place. This will also be the first year that Gainsborough stages Illuminate commemorations.
There are public lantern-making workshops taking place:

  • 27th October — Bassetlaw Museum, Retford — 10.00am to 4.00pm
  • 11th November — Grove Street Methodist Church, Retford — 10.00am to 4.00pm
  • 12th November — Grove Street Methodist Church, Retford — 12.00pm to 5.00pm
  • 18th November and 19th November — United Reformed Church, Gainsborough — 10.00am to 4.00pm

Why not join in? It will be a lot of fun and you can be part of the action!
In Retford, at 6.00pm on 21st November, there will be the Illuminate Civic Service at St Swithun’s Parish Church, including performances by the Elizabethan School drama group and the acclaimed Songbirds choir, followed by the ever popular ‘400’ photograph in the churchyard. Everyone is welcome.

In Gainsborough, on 22nd November, a similar Illuminate service will take place at the United Reformed Church, with the ‘400’ photograph taking place at Gainsborough Old Hall.

Visitor numbers to the area are increasing, and are forecast to increase further, as 2020 grows closer. The story of the Mayflower Pilgrim families and their roots in the area in and around Bassetlaw, North Nottinghamshire, is becoming better known. It is hoped that more events and activities relating to this story will be developed, across the year, over the next three years, to further enhance the local visitor economy and provide a positive impact on the wellbeing of the people in the area.