THE GALLEON PROJECT
This year marks the 400 year anniversary of the Mayflower sailing to America, and Dartmouth, being one of the focal points of the pilgrim fathers journey, intends to play a part in the celebrations towards the end of this year. Circumstances have conspired to seriously affect planned events in the region and future ones are still to be decided upon.
The Old Dartmothians Association members were very keen to make a contribution to the local celebrations, by totally refurbishing and re-planting the wonderful galleon floral container, formally housed in the Royal Avenu Gardens. This wonderful piece of floral art was last seen in the gardens around about five years ago. It was originally commissioned in 2013 by the South Hams Council at a cost of £7,000, to form part of the floral commemorations, in the Royal Avenue Gardens, of the Royal Navy having a presence in the town for 150 years. Then in 2014 the galleon was a part of the entries that were awarded a record number of trophies in the Britain In Bloom contest, which in turn lead to an invitation for the town to enter the prestigeous Tatton Park 2015 Royal Horticultural Show, where it was influential in advertising our town to the wider world.
It is unclear when the galleon was removed from the gardens, but it has been kept in storage, awaiting a return in 2020 for the Mayflower 400, regrettably due to the covid-19 pandemic the association members are unable to restore the galleon due to social distancing and isolation. I'm sure that it will remain on the project to do list for the association at some future date, let's hope that this is not too far away.