Walsingham has been a place of pilgrimage for centuries and
I hope that you will enjoy finding out about "England's Nazareth".
A cyber visit is fine - and this website will give
you a taste of the flavour of the Anglican Shrine - built to
house the statue of Our Lady of Walsingham.
is a short introduction to the life and work of the Shrine
on this page (see below.) However, if
you wish to know more of the history of the Shrine -
beginning with the dramatic vision of the Lady Richeldis
nearly a thousand years ago - go to
The Story So
Perhaps you would like to find out more about
pilgrimage to Walsingham in the 21st century - then follow the links to and from
To discover the times of services in the Shrine Church
and the Holy House simply
But to come to Walsingham
in person, to walk the Holy Mile, to sense the holiness and
prayerfulness of the Holy House and the Shrine Church is what
Walsingham is really all about. Do come. You will be most welcome.
If you've never been to north Norfolk before, the
section of the site will tell you all you need to know about
getting here and what to see and do on arrival.
Walsingham is for everyone - every person, every age, every
outlook, every need. Please ask the staff who are always pleased
to help. In partnership with them, I wish you a happy and holy
pilgrimage and offer you our prayers, as we ask for yours.
The Rt Rev'd Lindsay Urwin OGS
of the Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham
Archbishop of York - Dr John Sentamu - is to be the preacher
at this year's National Pilgrimage on Monday 27th May 2013.
The Archbishop of Canterbury - Dr Justin Welby - is hoping
to visit the 2013 Walsingham Youth Pilgrimage in August.
For information and news about what's happening at the
Shrine - go to
THE SHRINE OF OUR LADY OF WALSINGHAM
WHAT'S IT ALL ABOUT?
The Anglican (Church of England) Shrine
occupies an island site in the village of Little Walsingham,
five miles from the north Norfolk coast. Close to the ruins
of the original medieval Priory (destroyed in 1538), the
present-day Shrine was gradually created from 1931 from
derelict farm buildings and cottages with a brand new Shrine
Church in the south-east corner of the site. Within the
Shrine Church is the "Holy House" a 'recreation' of the
house in Nazareth where Mary received the news from the
angel Gabriel that she was to be the mother of Our Lord,
Jesus. Within the Holy House, above the altar, is the niche
where the statue of Our Lady of Walsingham sits surrounded
by candles and votive lights (see picture
below). The statue of Our Lady of Walsingham is
much-loved. It is important to understand that the statue is
focus for devotion - a visual aid - and not something to be
worshipped in itself. Down through the years Christians have sought
the prayers of Mary to support them in their pilgrimage through
life. At times in the history of the church there has been
controversy about devotion to Mary but in these ecumenical days
there are few who would deny a right respect and love to the Mother
have made the journey to Walsingham from all over Britain -
and the world - since the 11th century, not long after the
Lady Richeldis had her vision of Our Lady in 1061. However,
Henry VIII ordered the Shrine to be destroyed in 1538 as
part of the English Reformation and it was not until 1922
that the then Vicar of Walsingham decided to undertake the
restoration of the Shrine. You can find out more about the
history of the Shrine at
The Story So
Today the Shrine complex welcomes over
10,000 residential pilgrims each year (nearly 200 pilgrims
can be accommodated at any one time.) Meals are provided
round the clock in the Pilgrim Refectory and the Norton
Café Bar. In addition, a further 300,000 visitors come to
Walsingham each year. A new Visitor Centre is currently
under construction to help them enjoy their visit. There is
also a Shrine Shop in the centre of the village and offices
for the Membership, Accommodation and Education departments.
many people their first visit to Walsingham is centred
around the National Pilgrimage which takes place on the
Spring Bank Holiday each year. This is a wonderful outdoor
event with the famous procession of Our Lady from the ruined
priory grounds, through the village to the Shrine.
But at the heart of the Shrine lies the
Church and Holy House. Here pilgrims and visitors join in
the daily worship or say their prayers asking for Our Lady's
help. The daily
service of Sprinkling at the Well (Easter to October;
weekends during winter) is attended by
thousands throughout the year. Water from the ancient well
Church is used to sign a cross on the forehead, given as a
drink and poured over outstretched hands as a sign of God's
healing. Without interruption since 1931, Shrine Prayers - a
short service during which pilgrims intercession requests
are read out - has taken place in the church. Many
pilgrims and visitors are content simply to say their own
prayers; many like to enjoy the peace and beauty of the
Shrine gardens. For Walsingham is Holy Ground.
You can find out much more about all these
aspects of the Shrine's work by exploring this website.
offers ONLINE SHOPPING!
Our Shrine Shop is an integral part of the Shrine, focusing
on the needs of the pilgrims. Browse through our range of Ceramics,
Books, Jewellery, Cards, Silverware and much more - and then
Goods are available online or by mail order as well as
by personal visit to the shop, see
THE FUTURE -
For information about any of the above please
go to The Future
- How You Can Help Us/ Gifts/Legacies. The Shrine
Development Office can give advice on suitable donations and
gifts and the simple procedures involved in leaving a
The Milner Wing, Common Place, Walsingham NR22 6BP;
What is it? Pictured above? No it's not
an invasion of aliens - all is revealed at
The Future - Gifts.