BBC Two’s Pilgrimage returns this the Spring with a new 3-part series in which seven well known personalities of differing faiths and beliefs journey from Ireland to Northern Ireland and Scotland.
The celebrity pilgrims are interior designer and TV personality, Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen, who describes himself as a non-conforming pagan; England cricketing legend, Monty Panesar – a practising Sikh; actress, Louisa Clein, who is Jewish; TV personality Nick Hewer – an agnostic with Catholic roots; social media influencer, Scarlett Moffatt – a Christian; comedian, Shazia Mirza – a Muslim; and Paralympian, Will Bayley – a lapsed Christian.
Over fifteen days, the seven follow in the footsteps of the sixth century Irish monk, Saint Columba, seeking out his legacy as a key figure in early British Christianity who helped spread the faith from Ireland to Scotland and beyond.
Following ancient pilgrimages and heritage walking trails, the celebrity pilgrims begin their journey in the town of Donegal in the Republic of Ireland, then travel through Northern Ireland and over the sea by boat to western Scotland.
From there, they head up towards the Highlands before exploring the Hebridean Isle of Lewis and Harris.
They go to Stornaway and then to the Calanais Stones before arriving at their destination, Iona, a tiny island in the Inner Hebrides and the site of Saint Columba’s most revered monastery.
Covering more than 1600km, they visit places of worship, from pagan stones to an early Christian cave and a contemporary mosque and Sikh temple. This journey will test the pilgrims not just spiritually but physically too.
Daisy Scalchi, BBC Commissioning Editor, Religion & Ethics, says: “We are thrilled to see the wonderful Pilgrimage return for Spring 2022.
“This is an exceptional cast bringing a wide variety of perspectives to some of life’s big questions, at a time when conversations around meaning and values are more important than ever.”