In five days Caro Woods will start an 800 mile journey on horseback from the Holy Island of Lindisfarne in Northumberland, to St. Michael’s Mount in Cornwall to raise money for the Riding for the Disabled Association. Caro explains that as well as being a fund raising it is a journey of Pilgrimage:
By linking these two Holy Islands, I hope to create a spiritual thread between them, and in the process, possibly reconnect with an ancient pilgrim route. I plan to ride a horse from the Holy Island of Lindisfarne in Northumberland, near the Scottish border, to St Michael’s Mount in Cornwall. A journey spanning the breadth of England, creating a spiritual thread uniting the far NE shore to the SW corner of this country and linking two Holy Islands in the process. In travelling between these sacred places one not only refreshes one’s own spirit but assists in the work of reviving the latent spirit of the earth.
It will also unite the church dedicated to St Mary on Lindisfarne with the church on St. Michael’s Mount, so-called after the vision of St. Michael first appeared on top of the Mount to a group of fisherman in the bay below, in 495 AD. Before I knew about this connection between the churches on these Holy Islands, these two Saints already held a special meaning for me. The Mary / Michael Pilgrim route is a spiritual ley line that links Carn Les Boel in Cornwall with Hopton in Norfolk, and one that I have walked various Western sections of at different times in 2014 (as well as the St Michael’s Way in Cornwall which forms the Cornish section of the Santiago de Compostela Pilgrim Route). The spiritual energy of these two Saints are quite different and distinctive in their own ways, the ‘Mary’ energy being a more gentle and benign version of the ‘Michael’ energy. Both have become important elements of this journey. We shall join the M/M Pilgrim Route when we reach Glastonbury where we shall trace its curving, serpent path back to St Michael’s Mount, our destination in Cornwall.
This journey on horseback will be a personal pilgrimage. In this, my 60th year, each days’ ride will be a celebration of each year of my life. The aim is to create a body of work which explores the nature of long distance travel with a horse, as a form of meditation, reflection and personal transformation, as well as raising funds towards the important and valuable work of the RDA.