Bishop of Oxford inaugurates a Thames Pilgrim Way

Thursday 18 September has long been in the calendar as Scotland’s Referendum Day.

But is also the start the much-planned 104 mile Thames Pilgrim Way walk being undertaken by the soon to retire Bishop of Oxford.

Over ten days there will be a lot of people walking downstream with the Bishop through the Oxford Diocese.

Bishop John Pritchard starts out from remote Radcot Bridge on Thursday morning. Here the water is flowing into the Oxford Diocese from the Gloucester Diocese.

Radcot has the river’s oldest bridge. It dates from 1393 and is the work of monks from Normandy.

The intention is that the Thames Path within the diocese should be followed in the future by others aware of the historic parishes they pass through.

The first church seen is tiny Shifford Church on a spot where King Alfred is said to have held a very early version of an English parliament.

On pilgrimage’s the last day, Sunday 28 September, the party will reach Wraysbury parish which has deep associations with Magna Carta agreed on the Runnymede riverside in 1215.

The Rt Revd Paul Williams, Area Bishop of Kensington, will greet the walkers at the London boundary.

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