Whether it’s to rediscover long-hidden history, for faith, fitness or just for fun, a new collection of walking pilgrimage routes in England and Wales can now be found online at

‘Hearts in Search of God’ is a three-year project to encourage people of all faiths and none to experience a pilgrimage walk in their own locality. The Ways start at each of the 22 Catholic Cathedrals in England and Wales and strike out through town and countryside to one or more the local shrines.

The website provides GPX files, prayers and other resources for the inner and outer journeys on the largely off-road paths and tracks. There are downloadable ‘Pilgrim Passports’ and certificates of completion.

The inspiration and name for the ‘Hearts in Search of God’ initiative comes from Pope Francis' words about pilgrims: ‘Whoever they may be — young or old, rich or poor, sick and troubled or curious tourists — let them find due welcome, because in every person there is a heart in search of God, at times without being fully aware of it.’

CONTACT:  Phil McCarthy [email protected]

PHOTOGRAPH: Phil McCarthy (in red with flat cap) joined pilgrims on the 2022 St Wilfrid’s Way between Leeds Cathedral and Ripon, via the mediaeval Shrine of Our Lady of the Crag, Knaresborough.