Project aims


What did it truly mean to embark on a pilgrimage?

What were the reasons for making such an arduous journey? Who went on pilgrimage? How did pilgrims plan their route? What sort of provisions and supplies did they take with them? How did they entertain themselves? How did they react when they reached their destination? Were they fundamentally changed by their experiences, and how?

Project Pilgrimage aims to bring the lost experiences of mediaeval pilgrims to life once again. A week-long walk will take us from the famed Scottish religious seat of St Andrews to Lindisfarne Holy Island, the scene of the daring evacuation St Cuthbert’s relics in the face of the Viking raid of 793. This website will act as your gateway to experiencing pilgrimage in a manner personal to you, documenting the physical, spiritual and logistical experiences of modern-day pilgrims through the media of radio podcasts and photographs. The walk will take us via the Cistercian Abbey of Inchcolm Island and St Cuthbert’s traditional home of Melrose Abbey, as well as many other places associated with mediaeval pilgrimage in northern Britain. Discussion and blogging of our mental and physical experiences will be mixed with analysis of historical examples, readings of the literature of the heyday period of Cuthbert’s saint-cult, and descriptions of the sights and sounds of our journey.