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Plans for tour of the British Isles


The Endeavour Replica - Plans for tour of the British Isles

The Endeavour replica is due to arrive at Tower Bridge, London on 25 March. From the 28th to 13th April she will be berthed at Greenwich. The nearby National Maritime Museum will be holding a special exhibition from 24th March to 21st September in the Queen’s House and the Old Observatory. The statue by Anthony Stones [see Cook’s Log, vol. 19, no. 2, page 1270 (1996)] was recently erected in the museum grounds by the Duke of Edinburgh.

The ship leaves on 14th for Great Yarmouth, arriving on 18th April. She will be met by a cannon salute and a civic reception. On the 27th there will be special ANZAC Day activities. Captain Cook is associated with Great Yarmouth in three ways:

  • his first taste of life at sea was aboard the Freelove, which was built at Great Yarmouth;
  • on the Third Voyage, his two ships stopped at Yarmouth near the end of the voyage;
  • articles from his voyage were displayed in a museum in Great Yarmouth.

The Endeavour leaves on 29th April for Boston, arriving on 1st May. She is due to be met by the Lord Mayor, who is also Admiral of The Wash, and a flotilla of small boats. There will be a flight past by an RAF Tornado. The Banks Exhibition by the National Geographical Society and the Natural History Museum [see Cook’s Log, vol. 20, no. 1, page 1358 (1997)] will be on display at the Guildhall. Vintage buses will take people from the market square to the port, where there will be a nautical craft fair. On Sunday at 3 pm in the 18th century-style gardens of Fydell House a globe will be unveiled in honour of the local figures Banks, Flinders and Bass.

Joseph Banks, born in London, was the son of a wealthy family that lived at Revesby Abbey, north of Boston. His inheritance included extensive lands throughout the county of Lincolnshire. At the end of the Endeavour voyage, on 3rd December 1771, Banks received the freedom of the town. At Boston Parish Church there is a plaque on the north wall under the tower to "the memory of those men who came from this part of England to sail with Captain Cook on HMS Endeavour", such as Joseph Gilbert, Richard Rollett, Peter Briscoe and James Roberts. The Endeavour leaves on 6th May for Whitby, arriving on 9th to be greeted by a host of blue and white balloons. Many events are planned for the next fortnight including street musicians, sea shanties, guided walks, coins striking, ship bottling, concerts and dances. The Banks exhib- ition will be staged at the Pavilion. There will be a new information board on the West Cliff and new paving around the Cook statue there. During the visit Mrs. Cordelia Stamp will be selling souvenirs at a shop opposite the Captain Cook Memorial Museum (available by mail order from 128 Upgang Lane, Whitby YO21 3JJ, UK).

At nearby Great Ayton, the 1914 plaque on the Capt. Cook Schoolroom Museum is to be replaced with a bronze one. It has been commissioned from sculptor Nicholas Dimbleby, who is also working on a life-size statue of James Cook as a boy, to be erected on the High Green.

The Endeavour leaves Whitby on 19th May. As she passes Staithes, where Cook worked in Mr Sanderson’s shop. It is hoped there will be a 21- gun salute. Other events planned include a pag- eant, dancing round the maypole and fireworks.

The ship will next arrive at Leith near Edinburgh, on 23rd May. The annual Jazz Festival will be held during her visit. Captain Cook’s association with Leith lies in the frigate Solebay, which was stationed there, and which he joined on 30th July, 1757: captain Robert Craig. Cook had joined the Royal Navy two years earlier. In June 1757 he sat his master’s exams at Trinity House Deptford, which he passed. He was then appointed master of the Solebay, and travelled to Leith, probably visiting his parents in Yorkshire on the way. On his first voyage with her, she sailed up the coast calling in at Stoneham in Kincardineshire, Buchan Ness in Aberdeenshire, Copinsay in the Orkneys, Fair Isle, Lerwick in the Shetlands, and Stromness.

The Endeavour leaves on 2nd June for Inverness, arriving on 6th to be met by a Piper. Her visit coincides with the end of the two-week Highland Festival, and the 150th anniversary celebrations for the Harbour Trust will be held during her visit.

The ship leaves on 16th June for Greenock, arriving on 27th. A new watersports/leisure centre adjacent to her berth is due to be opened during her visit.

The Endeavour leaves on 7th July for Liverpool, arriving on 10th.

At all ports admission to the ship will cost £5 for adults, £2.50 for children, £12.50 for a family ticket and £3.50 for concessions.

Many events are still being planned. My thanks to members who sent me information about the preparations for Whitby and Staithes.

Ian Boreham

Originally published in Cook's Log, page 1375, volume 20, number 2 (1997).

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