EXCLUSIVE designs of a planned full-size replica of the pilgrim father’s ship, The Mayflower, have now been revealed.

Plans have been drawn up of the 110ft by 25 ft replica which business leaders are hoping to have built in Harwich as a way of attracting more tourism and creating more trade in the town.

The Harwich Mayflower Project is being carried out by The Consortium of Businessmen, a group set up earlier this year to help regenerate the area.

The 3D designs have been specially put together by freelance graphic designer, Sean Day and are based on the original designs for the first ever replica of the famous vessels, built in 1957.

Mr Day said: “The idea was to create a 3D visualisation of what we are trying to achieve so we can sell the idea to government bodies, and potential investors as well as the general public.

“They are the only plans like it in the UK and are based on original plans brought over from the US especially for the Mayflower project.”

The designs include a 17th century ships bell with a coin slot for people to donate money and it is hoped a viewing gallery will be built on the site of the ship so people can watch as it is being made.

The famous vessel has many connections with the Essex area and its captain, Christopher Jones, lived in King’s Quay Street, Harwich.

A school, medical centre, an annual fun run and even a beer brewed in the town have been named after the famous ship.

The Mayflower was also believed to have originally been berthed in Leigh and took pilgrims from Billaricay across the Atlantic to America in the 17th century.

John Acton, from the consortium, said: “The project is so far going very well. We have just got to find the right location to build it and the individuals and craftsmen to make it.

“We have got to source the timber and we have got to raise the money.”

He added: “This is probably one of the best ideas for reviving Harwich for a long time. We just need the support of the public behind us to make it work.”

For every tree that is used to build the ship the consortium are hoping to plant 100 new trees in and around the Tendring Peninsula.

They are also looking for space in a shop in Harwich and Dovercourt which they can use as a nerve centre for the project.

The project is expected to cost around £4 Million and it is hoped work will start within the next 12 to 18 months.