News from the 93rd AGM of BDRA


News from the 93 AGM of BDRA.


Billericay and the Mayflower Connection


 Julian Whybra’s research on Christopher Martin, a merchant and property developer in Billericay in the late 1500s and early 1600s resulted in a brilliant exposition of a man, though flawed in many ways, who was both entrepreneurial and courageous in a time of unrest at the beginning of what went on to be a very troubled century. He and his small family group sailed on the Mayflower.


The Mayflower’s passengers were made up of a group of religious separatists and a group of people who had responded to the Merchant Adventurers who had received a patent from the King to encourage people to set up a colony in America. Christopher Martin belonged to the second group and had the elevated position of Governor of the Voyage and victualler given to him by the Merchant Adventurers.


Christopher Martin, his wife Mary Prower, his stepson and servant, John Langmore were one of many small family groups who set out on an adventure.  It is true that they did not survive the first winter of 1621 however they were part of the foundation of the great colonial venture in New England.


Also I must mention that to Julian’s delight there was a descendant of Miles Standish, one of the Pilgrim Fathers, at the AGM. I know Julian would love to hear from you again and you can make contact through the BDRA channels. i.e. or 01277 632390.


From July to September 2020 there will be a number of events to commemorate this significant time in history and our connection to it. Julian’s book Billericay People will be published later this year and copies available in the Cater Museum and from Julian. BDRA and a number of organisations are planning for the year.  If there is any other group or organisation who has not yet said they are interested please get in touch via and I will forward details.


News from the 93rd AGM of BDRA