Mayflower 400 Southampton

Belonging – Our interpretation of the Mayflower story

The Mayflower story began with the epic voyage of the pilgrims, in search of the New World and finding their site of belonging. It is a story of persecution, hope and challenges they encountered as they negotiated a new regrouping of communities to call it home.

You can participate in the project in various ways. Through music, storytelling, and craftwork. These will be captured in the form of song, music, words, poems, craft, colour, and sound into a multi-sensory art installation that represents a home or a site of belonging. Watch the videos below and download the PDFs for more on how to get involved!

Would you like to see your creation, songs and stories in an installation in West Quay? You can submit your entries via email to, arrange a collection from your community group or drop them to either Woolston, Bitterne, Shirley or Southampton Central Library.

Introduction video Belonging Project – Art Asia

Drawing on aspects of the Mayflower story, Belonging, recreates a contemporary artistic version which is a play between the real and imagined, the local and universal, the specific and abstract. It is a story about somebody leaving their home to find a new life in an unseen country, where even the most basic details of ordinary life including language are strange, confronting, or confusing. It is a story of migration, a natural phenomenon. Since the earliest times, mankind has been on the move. Fear of migration is, therefore, an unnatural human reaction. And yet this feeling is very real, creating tensions and suspicion in host countries. We live in a world where people migrate by choice or because they are forced to flee for safety. Moving across countries, changing nationalities, seeking to belong and be part of a better and fairer world. Belonging is the retelling of stories of individuals and communities who have made Southampton their home and a place where they feel they belong.

The project seeks to encourage participants to use their imagination and lived experiences as a fertile ground to explore the emotional landscapes associated with the travellers, both at the individual and collective level, and  what it takes to create a New World, a site of belonging. This in turn, equips them better, with deeper sensitivity and humanity to create a community that values understanding, equality, democracy, and generosity of spirit.


This art installation will be presented in a public space. All those who participated in the making of this installation will be invited to view how their little contribution has a vital place within the making of a bigger home – thus demonstrating the power of the individual to play a vital role in creating a  harmonious society, something bigger than themselves. This public event will also host a craft and a ‘values provocation’ session that will shine light on the underpinning values of this project, equally opening the public to contribute to the installation in the form of craft. This is again a symbolic way of welcoming newcomers to become part of your home, or community.

Song created for the project by Pooja Angra. Example of music improvisation with an instrument in tune with the music. See below Promo video of song Naya Raasta

You can find  further information on the project and examples of how you, your community or your school can be involved on or We will be following all government directives on social distancing and all participatory programmes will reflect the current regulations.

You might also like

Share This:

To sign up for updates about Mayflower 400 in Southampton, sign up for the email bulletin below.