Origins of town to be recreated
The moment in Middle Age history that gave Stone its name will be recreated as part of the first official pilgirimage along the Two Saints Way, a new walking route that links Chester and Lichfield.
Stone owes its origins to the actions of Wulfhere, king of the ancient kingdom of Mercia in the seventh century. He killed his sons – Wulfad and Rufin – for their religious beliefs and their burial site in the town was marked by stones, which gave the town its name. The story is told on the iron railings at the top of the High Street.
At 9am on Friday 30th March, people taking part in the first Two Saints Way pilgrimage will bring stones to St Michael & St Wulfad’s Church. The previous evening, at 7.30pm, there will be a talk at St Michael’s Church, with Stone Historical Society, about Two Saints Way.
During the Middle Ages, pilgrims walked between the shrines of St Werburgh at Chester and the shrine of St Chad at Lichfield, stopping in Stone along the way. Now 21st century pilgrims will be walking again along the pilgrimage route which has been recreated as the Two Saints Way.
The route has been devised by keen long-distance walker David Pott from Stone and partners in the project include both the cathedrals, Stoke Minster, British Waterways, Staffordshire University and the local tourist boards.
The route has now been approved and an inaugural pilgrimage called “Forward to the Ancient Future” will take place between March 25th and April 1st, starting at Chester Cathedral and ending in Lichfield.
There will be a core team of 12 walkers, but others are expected to join the journey for days and half days.
David Pott, who also organises the Advent Window project with wife Pam, said: “Forward to the Ancient Future is a favourite phrase of mine that seems to encapsulate a lot about the Two Saints Way project. We are wanting to connect with the past in a meaningful way that will connect with our culture today. I have chosen it as the title for our inaugural pilgrimage because I hope that as we walk from Chester to Lichfield we will both gain wisdom from the past but also connect that wisdom for our own life journeys today.”
Log on to the Two Saints Way website for lots more information.