English Leg:

York to Canterbury

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1. York - Wakefield.jpg

Section 1:

York to Wakefield

35 miles 3 days. (Along the Paulinus Way). 

  • York to Bilborough Top (9 miles)

  • Bilborough Top to Garforth St Mary’s via Tadcaster St Mary’s (13.5 miles)

  • Garforth St Mary’s to Wakefield Cathedral (12.5 miles)


 

It is appropriate that the St Sigfrid's Way begins on the Paulinus Way since like Sigfrid, St Paulinus was a great evangelist.

 

A member of the mission sent to Britain in the early seventh century by Pope Gregory the Great, Paulinus was instrumental in the conversion to Christianity of King Edwin of Northumbria, baptising the king and many of his followers at York in 627.  


At Tadcaster, like York, a Roman foundation, now renowned for its breweries, St Sigfrid's Way leaves the Paulinus Way to pass through the ancient British kingdom of Elmet and the South Yorkshire coalfield area to reach Wakefield Cathedral, one of the three Cathedrals of the Diocese of Leeds.

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Section 2:

Wakefield to Stocksbridge

23.5 miles 2 days.

  • Wakefield Cathedral to Barnsley Parish Church (St Mary’s) (12 miles)

  • Barnsley St Mary’s to Stocksbridge St Matthias (11.5 miles)

 

Wakefield Cathedral’s labyrinth was installed in 2013.  In medieval times people unable to undertake actual pilgrimages might instead walk a labyrinth to gain some of the benefits of pilgrimage.


The production of linen and glass were prime business activities in Barnsley in the 18th and 19th centuries but coal-mining in the adjacent area became increasingly important in the 19th and 20th centuries. 
St Mary’s Church, Barnsley  is the destination point of this stage for the first day of this stage of the pilgrimage but the domed, art-deco St Paul’s is only a short distance off the pilgrimage route and worth visiting. 


Stocksbridge is a renowned steel-making town. The Church of St Matthias was built at the expense of Samuel Fox, a steel magnate, and consecrated in 1890.  It was closed in 2018.

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St Sigfrids Way UK Leg 01.jpg
3a. Stocksbridge - Eyam.jpg

Section 3:

​Stocksbridge to Eyam

25 miles. 2 days

  • Stocksbridge St Matthias to Sheffield Cathedral (12.5 miles)

  • Sheffield Cathedral to Eyam Parish Church (St Lawrence) (12.5 miles)

There’s controversy over where exactly in the ranking of the UK’s largest conurbations Sheffield lies, but it’s certainly within the top ten.

 

The Cathedral has been where it is now for about a thousand years. The journey to Eyam, which is situated in the Peak District National Park, is from the seriously urban to the seriously rural.

 

It also takes the pilgrim out of the Province of York and into the Province of Canterbury.

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Section 4:

Eyam to Ashbourne

32.5 miles 3 days. (Peak Pilgrimage)

  • Eyam St Lawrence to Bakewell Parish Church (All Saints) (10 miles)

  • Bakewell All Saints to Hartington Hall (9.5 miles)

  • Hartington Hall to Ashbourne Parish Church (St Oswald)  (13 miles)

In the Great Plague outbreak of 1665/66 the Eyam community took the decision to go into quarantine, its members staying in place and not fleeing the disease, so that other communities should not be affected.

 

Very many in the village died as the result of this decision. 
​​

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To open the map in Google Maps click here

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Lichfield Cathedral.jpg

Section 5:

​Ashbourne to Lichfield

33 miles. 3 days 

(Limestone Way, Staffordshire Path)

  • ​Ashbourne St Oswald to Rocester Parish Church (St Michael) (8 miles)

  • Rocester St Michael to Abbots Bromley Parish Church (St Nicholas) (12.5 miles)

  • Abbots Bromley St Nicholas to Lichfield Cathedral (12.5 miles)

Coming off the Pennines, the route makes for Rocester and then Uttoxeter. In Uttoxeter Market Place in 1784 the great lexicographer Samuel Johnson stood bareheaded in the rain for some hours in reparation for his refusing to work on his father’s market bookstall. ‘Johnson’s Penance’ is commemorated every year in the town with a special ceremony.


Johnson was born in Lichfield and will have worshipped at the Cathedral there.  The present building is largely 13th century and is unique among English cathedrals in having three spires.

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Section 6:

Lichfield to Birmingham

20.5 miles. 2 days.

  • Lichfield Cathedral to Sutton Coldfield, Holy Trinity Church (11.5 miles)

  • Sutton Coldfield, Holy Trinity to St Anne’s Roman Catholic Church, Birmingham, via St Chad’s Cathedral and St Philip’s Cathedral (9 miles)

The route runs through countryside, then outer Birmingham and into the heart of the United Kingdom’s industrial revolution.  Birmingham’s dynamism and creativity were central to the nation’s development in its high industrial phase over the eighteenth, nineteenth and twentieth centuries, as is indicated in the massive growth of the city’s population from 1500 in 1700 to 74,000 in 100 to over 1 million in 1950.


St Chad’s Cathedral is the end / start point of the Newman Pilgrimage route between Oxford and Birmingham, which the St Sigfrid route follows to Banbury, Deddington and Over Worton, before taking an alternative route into Oxford from that of the Newman Pilgrimage. 

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Birmingham.jpg

To open the map in Google Maps click here

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St Sigfrids Way UK Leg 07.jpg
7. Birmingham - Stratford.jpg

To open the map in Google Maps click here

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Section 7:

Birmingham to Stratford

44.5 miles 4 days.

(Newman Pilgrimage)

  • ​​St. Annes, Birmingham to Hopwood Westmead Hotel via Birmingham Oratory and the Oratorian Retreat House at Rednal (12 miles)

  • Hopwood Westmead Hotel to Hockley Heath Church (St Thomas) (10 miles)

  • Hockley Heath St Thomas to Preston Bagot Church (All Saints) (11.5 miles)

  • Preston Bagot All Saints to Stratford, Holy Trinity Church (10 miles)

The Birmingham Oratorian Community was founded by St John Henry Newman in 1849.


Newman died at the Oratorian Retreat House at Rednal and is buried in the cemetery there. From Rednal the St Sigfrid and Newman routes take the North Worcester Path and the Stratford Canal to Baddesley Clinton Manor, a Roman Catholic house of long-standing since pre-Reformation times and the nearby St Francis RC Church, previously the chapel of a Roman Catholic conventual community.  Newman visited both house and community.  Then back from Baddesley Clinton to the Stratford Canal and Shakespeare’s birthplace. 

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Section 8:

Stratford to Banbury

26.5 miles 2 days

  • ​Stratford Holy Trinity Church to Halford Parish Church (St Mary’s) (10.5 miles)

  • Halford St Mary to Banbury Parish Church (St Mary) (16 miles)

The route follows the River Stour south from Stratford and then turns east and south up the Cotswold scarp face, along the Ironstone Benefice Pilgrimage Route and into Banbury.  ​

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8. Stratford - Banbury.jpg

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St Sigfrids Way UK Leg 09.jpg

To open the map in Google Maps click here

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Section 9:

Banbury to Oxford

34 miles 3 days

(Deddington Deanery Pilgrimage)

  • Banbury St Mary to Deddington Parish Church (St Peter and St Paul) (9.5 miles)

  • Deddington St Peter and St Paul to Woodstock Parish Church (St Mary Magdalene) (12 miles)

  • Woodstock Mary Magdalene to Hampton Gay then Oxford, University Church and Christ Church Cathedral. (12.5 miles)

In 1824 Newman gave his first sermon in Over Worton, near Deddington, and the next year his first public address in Deddington itself. He may have visited Deddington on other occasions, possibly to hear the celebrated Evangelical preacher, John Hughes. 

 

From Over Worton the route continues to Woodstock and Blenheim Palace and then to the Oxford canal and into Oxford. 

 

Newman was (Anglican) vicar of the University Church of St Mary’s from 1828 to 1843.  In 1845 he was received in to the Roman Catholic Church at Littlemore. The memorial in the University Church to the martyrs of the English Reformation, both Protestant and Catholic, installed in 2008, is a moving marker at about the halfway stage of this ecumenical pilgrimage of a rapprochement between Anglicans and Roman Catholics. 

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Section 10:

Oxford to Egham

83.5 miles 7 days.

(Thames Path Pilgrimage)

  • Christ Church Oxford to Abingdon St Helen’s (10 miles)

  • Abingdon St Helen’s to Dorchester Abbey (9.5 miles)

  • Dorchester Abbey to Goring St Thomas (12 miles)

  • Goring St Thomas to Reading Greyfriars (12 miles)

  • Reading Greyfriars to Henley Parish Church (St Mary’s) (10 miles)

  • Henley St Mary to Marlow Parish Church (All Saints) (9 miles)

  • Marlow All Saints to Maidenhead Parish Church (St Mary’s) (8 miles)

  • Maidenhead St Mary’s to Egham (St John the Baptist's Parish Church) (13 miles)

The Thames Pilgrimage Path was inaugurated in 2014. It follows the Thames as it flows through Oxford diocese.  Dorchester Abbey contains the shrine of St Birinus who evangelised Wessex in the seventh century.

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St Sigfrids Way UK Leg 11.jpg
11a. Runnymede - Southwark.jpg

Section 11:

Egham to Southwark Cathedral

42 miles 4 days

(Thames Path)

  • Egham Parish Church to Walton-on-Thames (St Mary’s Church) (9.5 miles)

  • St Mary’s Church to Ham (St Andrew’s Church) (9.5 miles)

  • St Andrew’s Church, Ham to Putney (Putney Parish Church), (10.5 miles)

  • Putney Parish Church to Southwark Cathedral, via Westminster Abbey and St Paul’s Cathedral. (12.5 miles)

At Runnymede (near Egham) in 1215 King John gave his assent to the Magna Carta, often regarded as a foundational document for the recognition of the legal rights of individuals in respect of the government.  The route continues mostly along the Thames Path through west London until Westminster.

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Section 12:

Southwark Cathedral to Canterbury

83.5 miles 8 days

(Augustine Camino) 

  • Southwark Cathedral to East Greenwich, Christ Church (7.5 miles)

  • East Greenwich, Christ Church to Erith, Christ Church (12.5 miles)

  • Erith, Christ Church to Northfleet, St Botolph’s Church (9 miles)

  • Northfleet St Botolph’s to Rochester Cathedral (10 miles)

  • Rochester Cathedral to Detling, Church of St Martin of Tours (13 miles)

  • Detling St Martin’s to Charing, Church of St Peter and St Paul (12.5 miles)

  • Charing St Peter and St Paul to Godmersham, St Lawrence the Martyr Church (10 miles)

  • Godmersham St Lawrence to Canterbury Cathedral (9 miles)

Chaucer’s Canterbury pilgrims began their journey at the Tabard Inn, the site of which lies a few minutes’ walk south of Southwark Cathedral.  St Sigfrid's Way initially follows the Thames rather more closely than Chaucer’s fictional pilgrims would have.  At Rochester Cathedral, St Paulinus, first encountered on this journey at York, is buried.

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12. Southwark - Canterbury.jpg

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St Sigfrids Way UK Leg 13.jpg
13. Canterbury - Ramsgate.jpg

Section 13:

Canterbury to Ramsgate

22 miles. 2 days

​​

  • ​Canterbury to Preston (9 miles)

  • Preston to Ramsgate (13 miles)

Canterbury Cathedral became the prime pilgrim destination in England after the killing there of Archbishop Thomas Becket by knights of King Henry II in 1170. 

 

The Church of St Augustine in Ramsgate was built by Augustus Pugin, the great architect of the 19th century Gothic revival, to commemorate the arrival in Thanet in 597 of Augustine, who would become the first Archbishop of Canterbury.  Pugin is buried in the Church.

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Swedish Leg:

Göteborg

to Växjö

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Göteborg – Lödöse


Lödöse – Vänersborg


Vänersborg - Grästorp
 
Grästorp – Lidköping
 
Lidköping – Husaby
 
Husaby – Skara

Skara – Varnhem
 
Varnhem – Falköping


Falköping – Jönköping

Jönköping – Nydala


Nydala – Växjö

3 days (31 miles / 50 km)

3 days (31 miles / 50 km)
 
2 days (18.5 miles / 30 km)
 
2 days (25 miles / 40 km)
 
1 day (12.5 miles / 20 km)
 
1 day (15.5 miles / 25 km)

1 day (9 miles / 15 km)
 
2 days (18.5 miles / 30 km)
 
5 days (50 miles / 80 km)

4 days (43.5 miles / 70 km)
 
4 days (43.5 miles / 70 km)

The Swedish route is roughly 257 miles / 414 km

To open the map in Google Maps click here

To download the KML file (for use in apps like Google Earth), click here

Further information on the Swedish leg can be found by clicking the following button. The site can be translated into English by pressing the button "översätt" in the top right hand corner.

Inaugural Pilgrimage 2021

 

We will be departing from York Minster on Monday 17th May, walking through May and June, and arriving into Ramsgate on Friday 9th July. We will continue in Sweden from Gothenburg on Wednesday 28th July and arriving at our final destination of Växjö on Saturday 28th August.