Vivobarefoot x BPT – Earthed Pilgrim Retreat

Fri 3 May, 4PM – Tue 7 May, 2PM at Broughton Sanctuary

Become who you are supposed to be. Stay in the rewilded majesty of Broughton Sanctuary Estate, and transform yourself in some of the most dramatic lands in Britain: Pendle Hill and the Yorkshire Dales.

Earthing the Retreat
We are proud to announce a partnership with Vivobarefoot to launch the first fully-conductive Earthed Vivobarefoot shoe: “The Pilgrim”. With your ticket you will get a free pair of these new shoes to walk in. The Vivobarefoot Pilgrim shoe, as well as being a Wide, Thin & Flexible barefoot design bringing you closer to the earth and natural movement, will provide a further ‘Earthing’ by conducting your body’s electrons straight into the ground. Several health benefits are associated with grounding, such as stress reduction, anti-inflammatory, sleep improvement and gut health.

A series of pilgrimages will be held in May to celebrate the launch of this exciting next step for Vivobarefoot, starting with this exclusive event in Broughton Sanctuary.

About Broughton Sanctuary
Recently voted one of the top 30 ‘cool’ destinations in the world by National Geographic Traveller, Broughton Sanctuary is the UK’s leading transformational 3000-acre retreat centre. Home to one of Britain’s most exciting and extensive nature recovery projects, the pristinely-restored Historic House dates back to 1597 and is complemented by Avalon, a purpose-built biophilic, state-of-the-art Wellbeing Centre.

At Broughton you will recharge and reconnect in blissful nature, enjoy nutritious food and experiences ranging from a Labyrinth, a Fire Temple Celebration, a Floatation Tank, Yoga, and Woodland Dining. Discover Wild Wellbeing from Star Gazing, Ice Bathing, Wild Swimming, Woodland Saunas, Hot Tubs and more. The bedrooms are sumptuous. From this Sanctuary we will venture out each day to discover ourselves.

The Pilgrimage Experiences
We are a charity and our mission is to promote pilgrimage in Britain by helping to develop and publicise new and old paths as well as the practice of pilgrimage itself. We also suggest to pilgrims to ‘bring your own beliefs’. Our team seeks to make this retreat a gently transformative and heartwarming experience that is sure to move you along to the next stage of your own path.

One of your pilgrim guides, Dr Guy Hayward, is the Director of the British Pilgrimage Trust (hereafter ‘BPT’), which he co-founded in 2014 to promote ‘bring your own beliefs’ pilgrimage in Britain. He has been interviewed about modern pilgrimage for Netflix, BBC1 and BBC2 TV’s ‘Pilgrimage’ and Channel 4’s ‘Britain’s Ancient Tracks’, contributes to BBC Radio 4 and has written for the Guardian and Spectator. Guy completed a PhD at Cambridge on how singing forms community, founded and is half of musical comedy double act Bounder & Cad. He will sing sacred and folk songs of the surrounding land as part of his guiding.

Guy will be joined by fellow BPT pilgrim Dawn Champion, a historian and keen naturalist with a deep love of the British landscape. Dawn studied history, archaeology and architecture before working for English Heritage and then the Wildlife Trusts. She volunteers for several charities that promote connection with the magic of nature. And other guides to be announced…


Broughton Hall and Yorkshire Dales


Door of Transformation


Fire Temple

Friday 3rd May – Broughton Sanctuary – Arrive and eat dinner before setting your intention at the Door of Transformation, followed by gathering round the fire at the Fire Temple, sharing songs and stories.


Pendle Hill

Saturday 4th May – Pendle Hill, 5 miles; After a delicious breakfast, we will transfer to Pendle Hill to ascend the summit, where George Fox had a vision that inspired the founding of the Quaker movement (a spiritual path of simplicity, frugality and adventure that in turn inspired the Clark family cobblers that led to Vivobarefoot). Drink here from the deliciously refreshing holy wellspring from which he drank. Walk across the long ridge of this majestic hill, and experience a Quaker Circle to help clarify the vision that you need for your life. Then descend the valley of Boar Clough, where silence reigns and the nature spirits are in full force. Then rest in the extreme calm of the Upper Ogden Reservoir. Pass through woodland and dale before ending at Newchurch-in-Pendle, with which the Pendle Witches were associated (and there is a local witches’ shop too!).

After returning to Broughton, we’ll refresh by taking an ice bath with a view before warming up in a woodland sauna, then dinner and nightcap time.


Ice Bath


Malham Cove Limestone Pavement

Sunday 5th May – Malham Cove, 10 miles; Start at the ancient St Oswald’s church in Arncliffe, nestled in the Littondale Valley, before walking the ‘Monk’s Road’ along an awe-inspiring valley to Malham Tarn lake, a national nature reserve. Meditate on what monk-like simplicity you can bring into your own life, and forage for wayside herbs.

Cresting the limestone pavement of Malham Cove, we come to a huge curving amphitheatre of rock created by a glacial waterfall, before a tour of the Hill Top Farm, a beacon of sustainable farming. Heading along the Pennine Way, encounter an elemental crashing waterfall in the dramatic Gordale Scar gorge, then to the folklore-drenched waterfall of Janet’s Foss (perhaps taking a quick dip too). Follow the river valley cut into the limestone down to Aire Head, the source of the River Aire, a tributary of which flows through the Broughton Estate.

This is our longest-distance day, and so the Avalon state-of-the-art biophilic Thermal Suite with low-chemical clear swimming pool, steam room, sauna and hydromassage pool at the end will be even more welcome, and then we will look to the stars, guided by Broughton’s resident expert.


Avalon Pool


Avalon Steam Room


Gordale Scar


Bolton Priory in Wharfedale Valley

Monday 6th May – Bolton Priory, 6 miles; Starting at Appletreewick, a beautiful village with a Mock Beggar Hall in the immaculate and quintessential Wharfedale valley tread the gentle Dales Way down the River Wharfe via the ruined Barden Tower, taking the stepping stones across the river to Bolton Priory ruins. Resting in the majesty of the inner space of Bolton Abbey, we will offer up in gratitude all that we have learnt.

In the evening we will dine in the Cosmic Wood at Broughton, and have a bit of a party.


Cosmic Wood Dinner


33 Generations Hill

Tuesday 7th May – Ancestor’s Pilgrimage, 2 miles: This early morning half-day pilgrimage will weave all the elements together. From the Fire Temple, walk silently through the enchanted Cosmic Wood to the Ancestors’ portal with our burning torches. Ascend the Ancestors’ 33 Generations Hill, and walk the spiral of stones, each stone representing one of your ancestors to end at the fire in the centre. We then eat lunch together at Utopia restaurant and disperse at 2pm, with an optional visit to nearby Salts Mill until 5pm, or the option of staying for an extra night (for more information contact Joanne Barratt at Broughton Sanctuary).

This is a ‘Bring your own Beliefs’ pilgrimage, and will include: – New ways of meeting old pilgrim places (bring your own beliefs…) – songs on the path – opportunities for silence and musical rapture – engaging history and mythology.

During the retreat you will experience:

Avalon Pool Suite

  • Swim in a 20m clear swimming pool looking out onto the adjacent woodland
  • Nourish and relax the body in a Hydro-Massage Pool
  • Cleanse the body in an Organic Shaped Sauna and Steam Room
  • Allow peace and tranquillity to infuse your being in the Floatation Tank

Woodland Sauna, Ice Bathing and Wild Swimming Experience

  • Enjoy a rejuvenating experience in the wood fired sauna, set amongst the trees in a magical woodland
  • The heat will slow your mind, gently washing away stress and toxins.
  • Combined with ice bathing in converted barrels and wild swimming, this is a most invigorating experience to soothe mind, body and soul.
  • Connect with nature, nourish creativity, and have some great fun!

Fire Temple Celebration

  • Set within a picturesque woodland, this sheltered wooden structure is perfect for an evening of sharing and celebration!

Sample Hall Bedroom


Broughton Hall Library


Boar Clough


What does the ticket price include? All food, accommodation, the wild wellness experiences and guiding on pilgrimage are included, as well as a free pair of Vivobarefoot Grounding shoes.

Can I camp instead of staying in a room? If you would like to camp, please be in touch with Broughton Sanctuary directly.

What do I bring? Appropriate clothes and shoes; Swimwear; Waterproofs or Umbrella; Waterbottle.

How do I get to the start?
Skipton train station is 10 mins taxi away. Car parking at Broughton Sanctuary.

Who can come? Anyone over 18 (or under 18 with parental guidance, bearing in mind the walking distance).

Is this religious? All and no-faiths are equally welcome. We operate a “Bring Your Own Beliefs” policy. We ask that all participating pilgrims tolerate one another, whatever their beliefs.

Will I be asked to share my feelings with the group? We like to keep things light and breezy, so there will be no group emotional sharing moments. If you want to share your feelings in personal conversation when walking with others that is up to you, but certainly not compulsory.

Are there fitness limitations? Pilgrimage is moderately intense. If you struggle to walk all day, this type of pilgrimage may be an unsuitable activity for you right now. There are always plenty of escape points en route. But we will walk slowly, and start early, and 6-10 miles a day are manageable distances for the majority of people, and the terrain can be rocky in places but is not too steep. Unfortunately this pilgrimage is not suited for mobility-impaired people or those requiring wheelchair access.

Can I bring my dog? Sadly not – we can’t accommodate dogs on our guided pilgrimages. However, if you have a registered assistance dog, they are welcome.

What does my money go towards?The British Pilgrimage Trust is a charity, and profits raised from this limited space event will enable the team at British Pilgrimage Trust to make it possible for everyone, of all means, to make pilgrimage themselves. For more details about our charitable activities, please click here. We will also distribute some of the profits to local organisations from whom we have benefitted along the path.

If you would like to make an additional donation to support British Pilgrimage Trust’s work, click here.

We hope to see you on the path.


Gordale Scar Waterfall

No Comments Yet


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.