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To be a Pilgrim

25 June 2010

                             Children at Dunfermline Abbey

Primary school children from P4 – P7 will be given the opportunity to experience life  as a pilgrim, thanks to a new activity launched by Historic Scotland specifically for Dunfermline Abbey.

The pilot activity will enable children to understand religious beliefs and practices in early Medieval times, compare Medieval pilgrimage with modern day pilgrimage and learn about the Abbey’s place in Scottish history.  Cross curricular, the event  supports the study of social sciences, religious and moral education. It also provides a platform for pupils to go on and explore how pilgrimages form part of other religions that are still widely practised today.

During a range of activities, the children will have to carry sand as an act of penance, have a tour of the abbey with the Abbot, learn where food was cooked and served and sample some pilgrim’s fare.  They will also discover the architectural features of abbeys and the purposes of different areas.

Fiona Davidson, Education Officer, Historic Scotland said:  “Dunfermline was a very important religious and pilgrimage centre in Medieval times.  Through drama and role play, the children establish pilgrimage characters as they prepare to set off on their pilgrimage.  They undertake a pilgrimage walk from Pittencrieff park via St Catherine’s hospital, through the nave of the church and to St Margaret’s shrine.  They then explore the abbey and refectory in order to learn how the abbey supported pilgrims and why Dunfermline was such a key place of pilgrimage.”

For information:
The Medieval Pilgrims activity is available in September for any schools who wish to book. Please contact Historic Scotland's Education Unit on 0131 668 8610

Notes for Editors
  • Historic Scotland is an executive agency of the Scottish Government charged with safeguarding the nation’s historic environment. The agency is fully accountable to Scottish Ministers and through them to the Scottish Parliament.



For further information


Jennifer Johnston Watt
Communications and Media Officer
Communications and Media
0131 668 8070 or 07827 956 866
jennifer.johnstonwatt@scotland.gsi.gov.uk