While the HMP still has no funding after setting up in 2010 and trying since then to gain funding, the piece further down the page has come from the local paper, The Harwich and Manningtree Standard. Dated 13th March ’17.
On a funding note, while the HMP ( a small group of amateurs trying to build a ship) has stated the build will cost £4 Million, here is what the professional boat builders at Mystic Seaport that are refurbishing Mayflower II have to say:
Experts determined the 106-foot (MayflowerII) ship is in surprisingly decent shape for a wooden vessel exposed to six decades’ worth of the elements. That’s good news, because junking the ship and building a new Mayflower from scratch — an option once under consideration — would have cost $15 million. (approx. 12 million pounds)
*****From The Harwich and Manningtree Standard. March 13th 2017*******
A PROJECT to build a replica of the ship that sailed the Pilgrim Fathers to America is no longer being viewed as a major part of Harwich’s plan for the Mayflower 2020 celebrations.
The Mayflower Project, based in George Street, aims to build a full-sized ocean-going replica of the Mayflower in time for the 400th anniversary of the voyage.
But following fears over whether the ship will be ready in time for the celebrations, town councillors said the project will now simply be viewed as a bonus to the Harwich and Dovercourt Tourism Group’s plans for the anniversary.
Speaking at a meeting of the town council on Tuesday, resident Dr Terry Rogers said: “We were told the build would commence in September 2016.
“At the Mayflower’s annual meeting it was made clear that currently they had no significant funds available and no build could start until funding was in place.
“It was further stated that £3million was being negotiated from a major media company.
“No date was given for the completion of the negotiation.”
Mr Rogers said that at the AGM, the chairman stood down and that the vice-chairman has since resigned.
He added: “Has the time come for Harwich Town Council to encourage a reshaping of the tourism plan with the Mayflower Project essentially disregarded, but seen as a bonus to the plan if an ocean ready boat does get built?”
Town councillor Ivan Henderson said it would “inappropriate” for the council to interfere with Mayflower Project’s business, but said the tourism group is “very clear” that Harwich has a lot to gain from the 2020 celebrations.
He added: “The tourism group sees the Mayflower Project as a bonus to the Mayflower 2020 celebration and that’s how we have been planning things with Tendring Council.
“Harwich has got enough history to develop a really good plan for a celebration to go ahead when the time comes.
“There’s plenty going on and plenty to celebrate without one particular project.
“But it has always been our hope that the project can go ahead.”
Ian Davidson, the district council’s chief executive, stressed that the Mayflower Project was “always only one part” of the Mayflower 2020 celebrations and that the whole aim of the project is to encourage tourism for years to come.
But Fred Nicholls, the new chairman of the Mayflower Project, said he is still hopeful that the boat can be built.
“We accept it’s very difficult to build the vessel, but we have not given up,” he said.
“We are in negotiations with some high profile companies and if we get the funds the ship will be built on time – it’s purely a question of funding.
“There have been funding problems with the Mayflower Project, however, we are doing everything in our power to rectify it.”