St James' Way is a 68.5 mile route devised by members of the CSJ, following a probable route taken by medieval pilgrims in Britain on their way to Santiago de Compostela.

Reading Abbey, which celebrated its 900th anniversary in June 2021, was at one point the resting place of the Hand of St James.  Whilst its authenticity as the severed hand of the martyred apostle is disputed, it is believed to be the relic brought back to England by the Empress Matilda in the 12th century.  In the Middle Ages, Reading was the centre of the cult of St James in England.  Pilgrims would have made their way here to venerate the relic, before likely making their way to the closest sea port, via the ancient capital city of Winchester, and catching a boat to the shores of Galicia, and following the modern day "Camino Inglés" to the city of Compostela where they could see the tomb of St James (Santiago in Spanish).

Click here for a PDF leaflet describing the sites of Reading for the Modern Pilgrim, produced by Reading UK.

For more information on the history of pilgrimage in Reading, visit the Visit Reading website.

From Reading, the route follows rivers and canals through Berkshire and Hampshire, taking in historic settlements such as Bramley, Upper Wield and Winchester, before joining with the Itchen Way and coming down through Eastleigh into Southampton.  

The CSJ's guidebook to St James' Way, written by our own volunteers, is available for purchase here

Click here for a press release featuring links to materials put together by the tourist arm of Reading Council: Reading UK, including a pilgrim map of the city, as well as a short film showing highlights from the first stage of the route: pressrelease-stjameswaywaymarking.pdf

It is now possible for pilgrims to combine a Camino in the UK (or their home country) with a Camino Inglés from A
 Coruña, collecting stamps in an accredited pilgrim passport as they go, to make up the minimum distance required to qualify for a Compostela certificate of pilgrimage from Santiago Pilgrim Office.  In effect, you can start your Camino Inglés from your own doorstep!  

The following map is taken from, which gives more information in the Camino Inglés and its linked pilgrim routes in the UK and Ireland.