Worcester is to be a focal point for celebrations to mark the 400th anniversary of the founding of modern-day America.

Planned events in Worcester later this year include the Mayflower 400 Pilgrim Conference and the Three Choirs Festival.

Worcester is a featured partnership destination because Edward Winslow, who was born and schooled in the city, was one of the 102 pilgrims who travelled from Plymouth on ‘The Mayflower’.

Similar celebrations are due to take place in America as well as the Netherlands around the same time, as they also played a key part in migration to the ‘New World.’

The wooden, Dutch cargo ship, the Mayflower, left Plymouth for the month-long voyage across the Atlantic in July 1620.

The Mayflower 400 UK group is responsible for the planning of the events in the UK.

Charles Hackett, spokesman for the group, said: This project explores centuries of shared history between Britain, Holland and America.

“It’s an opportunity to create a broad cultural programme in multiple locations, to bring visitors to the UK to explore the past along the national Mayflower Trail, and to increase awareness of this pivotal event on all four nations.”

Brenton Simons, president of American Ancestors, said: "The story of what happened in 1620 is foundational to the story of democracy and has widespread genealogical and historical ramifications.

“We have an important stake in telling this story since our founding in 1845 and we are dedicated to helping our members and the public connect to this important moment in American history.”

Before leaving the ship, the pilgrims signed the Mayflower Compact, a document that established a basic form of democracy.