Network Norwich and Norfolk > Resources > Events > Solitude and Pilgrimage retreat in Norwich

Julian eventSolitude and Pilgrimage retreat in Norwich

There is a rare opportunity to better acquaint yourself with two remarkable East Anglian women writers – Julian of Norwich and Margery Kempe of Lynn - on a two day retreat on October 12 – 13. 


Norfolk was home to two world-class women in the 14th century. Margery Kempe, from Lynn, and Julian of Norwich could not have been more unlike each other. Margery was a mother of 14 children, an extreme extrovert, a frequent attendee in court for alleged misdemeanours, and an inveterate traveller with trips to the Levant and Europe, to say nothing of her travels around England – including to meet with Julian. In contrast, Julian as an Anchoress, lived a life of prayer and contemplation within the confines of her cell, just next to where this retreat is being held.
However, they can both lay claim to historic literary accomplishments which reveal their personalities with striking freshness and detail – Julian was the first woman to write a book in England, while Margery is considered to have written the first autobiography. They both longed to know God within. They both had a vivid interior life, and tell us how this engaged their physical sight and sense of smell. They were both concerned to avoid potentially serious consequences as women who strayed into the male territory of teaching about the God that they had each encountered. Their lives and works both have a lot to teach us.

The Rt Revd Stephen Platten will facilitate the event. Stephen was Dean of Norwich from 1995 – 2003. After that he was the last diocesan Bishop of Wakefield, and now is Chaplain to St Martin-within-Ludgate in London.


The Retreat will contain a mixture of presentations, plenary discussions for group questioning and exploration of the themes raised, readings from The Book of Margery Kempe and the Revelations of Divine Love by Julian of Norwich, one-to-one conversations over refreshments, led silence for reflection, simple liturgy, and times to read for yourself.

Click here to view the brochure, which contains the full programme.

Event details

Solitude & Pilgrimage; Two paths on the Christian journey
Friday afternoon, 12th October & Saturday 13th October 2018 St Julian’s Church, St Julian’s Alley, Norwich, NR1 1QT
The cost for the full event is £40. Alternatively you can book the Friday only (£25) or Saturday only (£20)

Book your place, find a map, and get more information visit

Do you appreciate our service and stories?

The Network Norwich & Norfolk website has been published for over 13 years now and we have an established team of professional journalists covering the activities, organisations and churches which make up the county’s Christian community. Our whole purpose is to support that community by daily providing accurate, unbiased stories and features.

To pay for that service, we rely on our partner organisations, advertisers and readers to, in turn, support us financially. We want to keep the website free for everyone to access and continue to be able to pay for writers to produce the content you can enjoy every day.

We would like to ask you to consider supporting our work and suggest you might want to make a small regular donation of just £1 a week and become one of our 100 Friends, or a larger one-off or annual amount.

Because we are part of a registered charity we can reclaim Gift Aid on your donations if you are a tax-payer.

Click here to fill out a standing order form and to add an extra 25% for free via Gift Aid

Click below to donate instantly via a credit or debit card or Paypal

 Recommended reading 
Not rated. Write the first review or comment
Site Search

 Norfolk services........ 


Twitter-button  facebookbutton


Sign up for our
free e-newsletter

Send us your latest local news and events