Going Around and Connecting Dots

Landscape Monuments and Pilgrimage Tourism in Celtic Britain


  • Jonathan M. Wooding University of Sydney




monuments, pilgrimage, saints, landscapes, liturgy


Pilgrimage tourism is a growing phenomenon in Britain. Across the last few decades it has inspired the construction of pilgrimage trails—frequently named after saints—in the region identified as “Celtic Britain”. Many of these trails link together well-documented artefacts, such as landscape monuments and church buildings, which act as waypoints or stations, along routes inspired by narrative models of pilgrimage. There is considerable interest in studying the reception of such data through their use in trails. Questions of historicity arise from claims made for the nature of early medieval Christianity. Although deconstructing these claims could seem to be mainly an academic priority, it may also contribute to diversifying the visitor experience over the longer term. The use of scholarly data in pilgrimage trails can also serve as a measure of the impact of religious history research upon economic and parochial life.


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Author Biography

Jonathan M. Wooding, University of Sydney

Jonathan M. Wooding is a retired Professor of Celtic Studies at the University of Sydney in Australia. His research interests span religious history and Celtic Studies, with a focus on church heritage, monasticism, and literary narratives of pilgrimage. He has worked as an advisor to a number of projects in religious tourism and pilgrimage in Wales. In 2011 he was appointed a patron of Churches Tourism Network Wales.


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How to Cite

Wooding, J. M. . (2021). Going Around and Connecting Dots: Landscape Monuments and Pilgrimage Tourism in Celtic Britain. Fieldwork in Religion, 16(2), 193–209. https://doi.org/10.1558/firn.21202