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Boston Hanse Group awarded £14,000

Boston Hanse Group has been awarded £14,000 for Boston Unfurled, a project celebrating the town's links to the Hanseatic League.

The Arts Council money will contribute towards the group's cultural celebration of Boston's historic connection and renewed membership to the Hanseatic League.

Boston rejoined the Hanseatic League in 2015, after a 700 year absence. Boston was a warehousing site and trading partner with Hanseatic League countries in medieval times and owed much of its early prosperity to the trade it enjoyed from across the North Sea.
It joins 183 towns and cities including King's Lynn, Kingston upon Hull, Aberdeen and other members from Belarus, Belgium, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Russia and Sweden in the Die Hanse, the modern-day Hanseatic League.

Boston Unfurled, which will take place throughout this year, will involve schools and community groups from around the town to create a collection of 30 flags and pole tops (finials) that will be exhibited throughout Boston.

The approach will focus on the idea of flags, exploring their historical form and purpose as visual symbols including national identity and history, their use in communication, signalling and semaphore and as craft pieces through decoration and celebration.

Artists Ruth Pigott and Kathleen Smith will lead people through the design process, exploring symbols and motifs and producing designs which will be created using embroidered applique. The crafted pole tops (finials) will be designed using CAD software, 3D printed and cast in bronze to create stunning, distinctive jewellery-like embellishments to make the flags special.

Boston joined New Hanse in 2015, with the hopes of creating cultural and business alliances with cities around the North and Baltic Seas. Boston Hanse Group and members of Transported, the Boston-based arts organisation, will travel to Kampen, Netherlands for the 37th Hanseatic International Days this June.

Nick Jones, Programme Director for Transported said: "Whilst the New Hanse represents Boston's historical links to Europe, this arts project will increase understanding of the story to use it to bring residents from all backgrounds together, including and especially people who have moved here more recently, many of whom are culturally linked through the original Hanseatic League."

Chairman of Hanse, Alison Fairman, said: "This a wonderful opportunity to involve all Bostonians old and new in the long history of the town. People will be able to see their designs on display and in the long term this could be the start of a much bigger project."

Hanse Day will take place on Saturday, May 27, in Boston Market Place. Workshops will take place throughout the summer. Visit to keep up to date.

Bremen's 14th Century Hanseatic banner Displays a larger version of this image in a new browser window  Konigsberg's city flag illustrated with a Hansa cog Displays a larger version of this image in a new browser window