Via Francigena - Being Human

The Via Francigena features in UK’s Being Human Festival

As part of the UK-wide festival entitled ‘Being Human’, the University of Kent has organised a 12 mile walk on the pilgrimage route The Via Francigena.  Participants will begin their experience of the historic route at the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Canterbury Cathedral.  Exiting the walled city, the Francigena goes past the Abbey of St. Augustine and St. Martin’s church, the first Christian church in the English-speaking world.  The route takes in the Kent villages of Patrixbourne, Womenswold, and lastly Shepherdswell, where the walk will conclude. 

The Being Human Festival is led by the School of Advanced Study at the University of London, and is being run in partnership with the Arts & Humanities Research Council and the British Academy.  Its aim is to engage the public with humanities research that is taking place throughout the UK.  The overall theme for this year is the human experience of hope and fear, which ties in particularly well to the experience of pilgrims through the ages who have journeyed along the Via Francigena from Canterbury to Rome.  The walk, led by PhD student Julia Peters, from the department of Classics and Archaeology at the University of Kent, offers participants an opportunity to reflect on the experience of pilgrims setting off for unknown lands where their fate rested on the generosity of both man and nature as they covered 1200 miles typically on foot.  

This free event will take place on Sunday, 20 November and will begin at the gates of the Canterbury Cathedral at 9 am and finish at 3pm. 

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