There have been many occasions when a bath and the pilgrims don’t seem to have got together for a long while! And I am sure there will be lots of jokes next August about the unwashed heading for the shrine of Bath Abbey! When the planning meeting was held back in November Mike Simons had already done some research into the idea of going to Bath, and he sold the beauty of his suggested route to those who had responded to the invitation to come along and offer their help with the pilgrimage organisation. So first of all let me give you the results of that meeting, from which the following team emerged:


Fr Bill Haynes


Alan Fox


Patrick Reeve

Hall Organiser

Mike Simons

Van Driver

Imelda Simons


Frances Dean

Chief Route Planner

Aidan Simons

Publicity & Press Officer

Monica McLauchlan

Day Pilgrims

Gillian McLauchlan

Public Transport

Julian Martin

Which left the follows tasks to be allocated: Chaplain, Medical Officer, Drink Stops, Sarnie Queen/King, Van Loading. We will miss Mary Clifford who has asked to have a years leave of absence at least from being Medical Officer. Thank you, Mary, for all your blister popping and motherly care of sickly pilgrims over the years. Mary and Philip Sharp have volunteered for the drink stops, but at the time of writing the others are open to offers! A detailed job description for each of these were agreed, including a time scale for pilgrimage preparations. Mike Simons who had been asked to have a look at the possibility of a second Glastonbury pilgrimage, had discovered the attractive possibilities of completely fresh countryside en route to Bath. The planning meeting unanimously agreed on the plans he presented for the Wessex Walk or St Dunstan’s Pilgrimage for Summer 1986. It was agreed that further planning meetings would be held in February and July. No dates were fixed at the time but these will be at St Patrick’s Parish Room, Broad Green, Woodingdean, Brighton, at 3.00pm on Sundays 9th February and 13th July.


As November turned into December on a cold and wet week­end some 40 pilgrims responded to Aid and Meld Simons invitation to Alton, where civilisation meets the watercress line.. Actually the hall was quite warm and the Saturday walk quite dry and a good time was had by all. The nearest pub, rain prevented us exploring further, didn’t seem too keen on our singing, but that didn’t stop us! The gathering was used to gain volunteers to lead each of the days walks on next summers pilgrimage. Those responsible are:

Brighton to Henfield

Louise Ingelbrecht & Brenda Dillon

Henfield to Billingshurst

Mike and Mark Sharp

Billingshurst to Haslemere

Maurice Hickman

Haslemere to Alton

Pete Dare

Alton to Basing

Meld and Mike Simons

Basing to Kingsclere

Tom and Jackie Jeffers

Kingsclere to Kintbüry

Alan and Eileen Fox

Kintbury to Marlborough

Patrick Reeve

Marlborough to Devizes

Fr Bill Haynes and Snoopy

Devizes to Westbury

Stephen O’Shea

Westbury to Bath

Aid Simons


Not available online


Fern Nicholas is now Mrs John White, and Fern and John are now living in the New Forest at Ashford House, Ashford Road, Fordingbridge, Hampshire. Dominic Webb married Julie Thomson, who some may know from the Brighton 18+ Club, in September 1985. Shuna Grafen, known to pilgrims as Suzanne, is now Mrs Vernon Joynson. The couple married in the Irish Church in Islington on the 31st August 1985. They now live in Islington and Shuna is a staff nurse at the Middlesex Hospital.


David and Thea Bull (née MacKnight) (Pilgrimage One) had a baby daughter Abigail on November 7th 1985. They are now living at 5, De Gray Close, Spences Lane, Lewes, telephone 474816. Charles and Margaret King (née Brockman) had a baby boy in early September, Dominic, a brother to Simon. Paul and Sheila Simons (née Philip-Smith), who initiated drink stops in the heat wave year of 1976, had a baby boy, Christopher in June 1985.


Father Bill Haynes is organising a spring holiday to Belgium, Holland and Luxembourg, centred mainly in the Ardennes, the hills of Southern Belgium. Transport is by mini-bus and accommodation is in cheap hotels. There are a couple of vacancies with the happy group that are going. Cost inclusive of transport, ferries, accommodation, mini-bus hire and insurance is £100. Most meals are not included in this. The dates are Sunday 20th to Friday 26th April. Write to him  for fuller information or even send a £20 deposit.


Jane Rex is now a fully commissioned officer in the Prin­cess Mary’s Royal Air Force Nursing Service. Having completed her initial training at Cranwell, she is now stationed as a midwife at RAF Hospital Ely. Jane walked to Ely and beyond on the Walsingham Pilgrimage in 1977 so I am sure she enjoys the familiar sight of the spire of Ely Cathedral! Tony Tilley (van driver on Buckfast 2) has been having lots of hospital tests and cancer of the liver, lymph system and bone marrow has been diagnosed. He has just begun chemotherapy. Do remember to pray for his good health. Gary O’Brien has been doing assault courses for the handicapped Children’s Pilgrimage Trust. What have you been doing? Do send in your news for the next pilgrimage newsletter.