The Walsingham Way is a community and ecumenical partnership enabled by Norwich Cathedral, part of their contribution to the European Green Pilgrimage Network. The heart of the project is a safe to walk pilgrim path – on green lanes and footpaths – from Norwich to Walsingham. A route we were able to waymark in the spring of 2021.
Established in 1061, the Holy House and Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham was to become medieval England’s premier pilgrim destination, drawing pilgrims from far and wide. Many on their way to Walsingham passed through Norwich, second only in population and importance to London
Suppressed at the Reformation, the Holy House, Shrine and pilgrimages were re-established in 20th Century. Today, the imperative of developing low carbon tourism and renewed interest in walking pilgrimages combine to makes the Walsingham Way a project for our time.
Once England’s second city, Norwich was said to have had ‘a pub for every day of the year and a church for every week‘. Today, with fewer pubs and churches, the night time economy and church life remain vibrant; and historic church buildings remain part of the cityscape.
Pilgrims can extend their Walsingham Way experience by a further 38 miles, if they set out from Great Yarmouth on the Wherryman’s Way. Alternatively, the Great Yarmouth to Norwich leg can be walked as a pilgrim route in its own right – tracing Christianity’s journey from 7th Century mission stations by the seaside, to the modern cathedral city Mother Julian called home.
We hope to add more routes to our collection; including a King’s Lynn to Walsingham leg to create a continuous route across the heart of Norfolk.