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Mini Pilgrimage – Final Details and Diary

We now have a diary page for the mini pilgrimage at http://thepilgrims.org.uk/2022/mini.php

This page includes the itinerary (on the right hand side) and, at the foot of each day, within the “Walk Stats”, you will find a link to download the GPX file if you want to follow the route on your GPS device or compatible phone.

The diary is still empty (apart from some test photos!) and will remain so until participating pilgrims post content. If you are participating, that means YOU! There are 3 ways to submit content:

  1. Using Twitter, tweet a photo and a descriptive text (keep it short!) and mention @Pilgrimage2012.
  2. Go to http://thepilgrims.org.uk/addphoto.php and follow the instructions. You’ll need a password which will be shared verbally.
  3. Send an e-mail to deardiary at thepilgrims.org.uk with a photo attached and the caption in the subject line. Photos submitted this way may not appear in the diary until later in the day.

For those not participating, the diary should start to be populated once we gather on Friday evening / start walking on Saturday.

2022 Pilgrimage Booking Information

Here you will find the direct links to the publicity material and booking forms for this year’s pilgrimages that David introduced in his recent post..

St Thomas’ Pilgrimage
Swansea to Hereford
13th-28th August 2022

Background: Much to be thankful for

Poster

Booking Form

Medical Form

3-Day Mini Pilgrimage
29th April – 2nd May 2022

Considering joining the pilgrimage next summer? There’ll be another taster pilgrimage in Spring 2022.

Outline Route Information

Poster

Booking Form

Medical Form

Jane Potter RIP

We are saddened to report the death of Jane Potter, wife of Mark who has walked with us in recent years and sister of pilgrims Clare Gamble, Mary Yeomans and Imelda Simons. Jane was a “pop-in” pilgrim especially since Mark started walking with us, and would have met many pilgrims over the years.


Jane was diagnosed with advanced cancer in December last, but died in March from an infection following surgery to remove the cancer.


Jane’s funeral, a Requiem Mass, will be on Tues 3rd May at 10.00am at St Dunstan’s Church, Shaftesbury Road, Woking GU22 7DT. Family flowers only. A Tribute / donations page will be set up for The Fountain Centre or Survive-Miva via Woking Funeral Service. Only coloured ties at the funeral, as Jane did not like black ones! The Mass will be live-streamed for those unable to travel. See https://st-Dunstans.org


We send our prayers and condolences to Jane’s family, not forgetting son Christopher. May she rest in peace.

New Mapping of Old Pilgrimages

Some years ago we started pulling together information on our past pilgrimages and sharing it online. Part of this was to answer a question about where we had visited most often (Arundel Cathedral was the obvious answer). That gave us a list of all the “waypoints” with their grid references, so why not display them on a map?

We created a mapping page, adding the historic pilgrimages to it and then adding each new pilgrimages after the event, but technology moved on and our solution recently stopped working. Rather than try another sticking plaster on the old code I decided to look at a whole new way of managing the data and generating the maps.

You don’t need to know all the gory technical details (but I’ll add them add the end for the geeks), but you can see the results at http://thepilgrims.org.uk/newmapping/index.html

When the page opens you should see England and Wales with a lot of black dots (places we’ve visited) and coloured lines (the routes we’ve walked). As you zoom in the black dots will split , ultimately into individual locations, and as you zoom out they merge again.

At the top left of the map there are buttons to zoom in and out and a measuring tool (though you can zoom with the mouse wheel or your fingers, depending on your device). Top right there’s a button: it might look like a sandwich but it represents layers and allows you to choose what you see on the map. By default all pilgrimages are shown with the stops (black dots) on top.

Clicking on a black dot should display information on the location and the year(s) we visited it. Clicking on a route line should show the name of the pilgrimage and a link to its diary (and maybe which day it was). However, we’ve found clicking to get info a bit hit-and-miss – it probably works best if you deselect most of the pilgrimages and concentrate on those that are relevant..

You’ll notice the early pilgrimages (1975 to 2006) join the dots with straight lines, but from 2007 we’ve used the detailed routes. A good example is the penultimate day of the two St David’s Pilgrimages between Nolton Haven and Solva: the 2010 route follows the coast but the 1992 route walks on water across the bay!

We’ve also found that some of the grid references (often done by eye from a paper map) are a bit off (Some aren’t even on the detailed route!). I’m fixing some of them in slow time. If you find any real howlers let me know and I’ll prioritise those.

Finally, I found an interesting use for the maps this weekend: I’d been out for a cycle ride on the south side of the South Downs, stopping (as is my habit) at churches I passed. Comparing with the pilgrimage maps I found that 4 of these we’d visited on the pilgrimage: Chalton (1982), Blendworth (1982 and 1989), Up Marden (1989) and East Marden (1989) and could compare the photos in our diaries with the current day, but mostly feel a connection to the pilgrimage.

Hope some of you find this of interest.

The technical stuff:

  • Data managed in QGIS
  • Published to web using qgis2web plugin
  • Routes manipulated in Anquet’s Outdoor Map Navigator
  • http://gpx.studio/ used to iron out inconsistencies in GPX files
  • GPSUtility used to divide long tracks into individual days
  • Original waypoint list in Excel, lat/lon added in PHP and saved to MySQL (the old solution), then exported back to Excel again

Pilgrimage Reunion 2021

Following the “pilgrimage of day walks” this year, we are celebrating with a one-day reunion in Caterham on Saturday 30th October 2021.

Please join us for the A&B Ecumenical Walking Pilgrimage Reunion Walk. We will start at the Church of the Sacred Heart, Essendene Road, Caterham CR3 5PA where there is a car park. Please gather at 9.30 am for a 10 am prompt start. We will follow a circular walk around the outside of Caterham including the London Loop, the Downlands Circular Walk and the North Downs Way. We will stop for a pub lunch between 12 and 1 pm at The Harrow Inn, 235 Stanstead Road Chaldon CR3 6AJ. We will return to the Church of the Sacred Heart for a Reunion Service at 5 pm. We will go for a meal afterwards at The New Caterham Arms, 83A Coulsdon Road, Caterham CR3 5NF at 6 pm 

If you plan to come to the reunion, please e-mail organiser John Doyle on reunion21@thepilgrims.org.uk and let him know:

  • That you’re coming
  • What you’d like to order for lunch at the Harrow from this menu
  • Whether you intend to stay for the evening meal at The New Caterham Arms

The deadline for food orders at The Harrow is Tuesday 26th October.

Also please download this booking form, fill it in, and attach it to the email that you send to John.

The ‘Old Way’ Pilgrimage – Bookings Open

Southampton to Rye 14th – 28th August 2021

Rather than our usual format with accommodation included, this year’s pilgrimage will constitute a series of day walks along the “Old Way” which runs from Southampton to Canterbury.

We plan to start from Southampton and walk as far as Rye. We hope to complete the remainder of the route to Canterbury on another occasion.

Each day will start and finish with prayers. There are 2/3 prayer stops each day and as usual we are looking for Pilgrims to volunteer to take Prayer Stops.

There will be a registration form to complete and a small fee of £5 per day, £20 for one week or £30 for the two weeks.

A medical form will need to be completed by everyone taking part, even if it is just for a day.

Each Pilgrim will have to arrange their own accommodation and travel. Some are staying with friends and family, some in B&Bs or camping and some are doing day trips. For those driving each day we hope to arrange that some cars will be parked at the end of the route and some at the beginning so that pilgrims can be ferried back to the beginning at the end of the day to collect cars or to be dropped off at stations. When car sharing masks must be worn and we kindly ask everyone to take a lateral flow test before the first day of walking and then every three days.  
There are plenty of stations, buses and taxis along the route and of course pub and café stops will be planned.

I do hope that as many of you as possible will be able to join us. For those who feel it is too far to travel please let Chris know if you are able to get together with others to organise your own walks.

Click here to complete online booking form

Michael Fuller RIP

Mary Fuller has asked us to let pilgrims know that her husband Michael has died.  He died peacefully in his sleep on Thursday morning,  17th December after a long illness  (He had oesophagal cancer).  Mary asks for prayers from the pilgrims.

Mary herself is unwell and doubly in our prayers at this time.

Tom Jeffers RIP

We learnt yesterday of the death of Tom Jeffers. “Tom died peacefully in hospital on Friday having contracted Covid 19. His advancing dementia and reduced mobility made him vulnerable.

Tom and his wife Jackie first walked with us on the Papal Pilgrimage to Wembley in May 1982, and were integral and inspirational members of the group throughout the 1980s and into the 90s.

Tom, a teacher at Christ’s Hospital near Horsham, was very involved in the music of the pilgrimage, and enthusiastically encouraged the younger pilgrim to get involved.

Tom and Jackie joined the pilgrimage again in 2000 near Bracknell, on our way to Lichfield. Tom was awaiting a hip replacement and unable to walk so cycled from stop to stop. At the redundanct church of All Saints at Shurlock Row, Tom led a memorable prayer stop on the theme of “rebuilding”, ending with a rousing rendition of “God the Builder” (as in “Bob the builder”).

Here are some other photos with Tom…

Arriving in Dover 1990
Front marking
Tom’s guided tour of Oxford 1989
An open air prayer stop, 1988
Van packed! Devizes 1986
Showing Fr Reg the route, 1986.

We send our condolences to Jackie and the family. May Tom rest in peace, I’m sure the angels will be singing in welcome (and if not Tom will get them organised).

On this day…

On this day 45 years ago,  Easter Monday, 31st March 1975, 32 intrepid walkers met at Arundel Cathedral, and started a 14 day trek to “beat the bounds” of Arundel and Brighton Diocese. For the most part they were strangers to one another at the outset, but they would become firm friends as they endured the 240 mile walk, the snowy weather, and the hard floors at night. 

Masterminded by the late Fr Bill Haynes, the pilgrimage became an annual event, albeit moved to August so the challenge was heat or rain not snow. We’ve faced other hardships along the way – stolen boots, half-demolished accommodation, obstructed footpaths, injuries and illness, even deaths. But, with prayer and mutual support, we’ve pulled through, and come out stronger.

Only in 2001, when Foot and Mouth Disease closed the UK countryside, have we not been able to make our pilgrimage. With the current corona virus pandemic, our mini-pilgrimage has been put back to 2021, and the summer pilgrimage hangs in the balance.

As the pandemic affects the whole world, we invoke the pilgrimage spirit of prayer and mutual support – for those we know, and those we don’t yet know, those we journey with and those we pass (at a safe distance) on the way. We will come out the other side, and we’ll come out stronger, but for now we must keep the faith and stay strong.

Change of Mass time Arundel Cathedral Friday May 8th

MINI PILGRIMAGE UPDATE We have just been informed that on Friday May 8th Arundel Cathedral Mass will be at the revised time of 09.00 (not 10.00 as stated on the booking form).  This change has been made by the Cathedral due to VE Day Celebrations in Arundel commencing 10.00.  Pilgrims not arriving Thursday evening are advised to be in Arundel very early on Friday morning as the town will be busy.  Pilgrim Registration has been brought forward to the earlier time of 08.15-08.45 in Arundel Cathedral Centre.