Eco Comment – Of Walking on Thin Ice: A film about walking, family, connections, climate and a better future.

12 April 2024

There are many reasons people decide to take or make a walk. Possibly at it’s simplest it is to go from A to B. The decision to walk might be for financial or health reasons. It might be for personal and/or spiritual gain. Historically, walks were undertaken for pilgrimage or as acts of protest. The film that is being shown in the cathedral next Wednesday is about a walk that was undertaken to demonstrate the strength of feeling about the future of the natural world and the decision makers who were meeting in Glasgow for COP26.

The walk is described as ‘a people’s walk carrying a message of love, hope, grief, fear and connection with the natural world to leaders deciding on the future of our climate’.

Filmmaker Benjamin Wigley walked with the group, who became known as ‘Caministas’, filming their experiences and capturing the sense of pilgrimage on this emotional and purposeful journey. More than a thousand walkers, aged from 8 to eighty plus joined the Camino for a few hours, a day or more, or completing the entire route to Glasgow.

The walk was 500 miles in length from London to Glasgow. It lasted eight weeks, 56 days and more than 56 host organisations, over a thousand walkers and thirty rolls of 16mm celluloid film.

Some of you might remember a group of walkers from Spain coming to Wakefield on 15th October 2021. They were a 12 strong group who had made the decision to walk from Spain to Glasgow. They were greeted by a climate action rally outside Wakefield Cathedral organised by Just Transition Wakefield and a crowd gathered to hear speeches from walkers, school children and union officials. The walkers explained how they had faced challenges during the journey. Their support vehicle had broken down 4 times, they’d walked up to 21 miles a day with no rest days but they had been welcomed by local groups along the way. People had come out of their houses to greet them. They had been overwhelmed by the number of people who cared about the issues and the planet. This had inspired the walkers and given them hope for their march.

For the school children from Lawefield Primary School and Stanley Grove Primary School in particular it will be a day that they will remember for a long time. Climate anxiety is a real thing and these young people experienced activism in real time. They met and had the opportunity to speak with others who were being proactive. This wasn’t just something on the news or computer screen. This was a group of real people showing everyone they met that they and others cared about the decisions being made on our behalf by the politicians and world leaders.

Whilst the film being shown on Wednesday at 7pm is on a screen it is about another group of real people who cared about our future. We will have an opportunity to speak to each other about the film and how we can be proactive about looking after our world. Meeting others who share similar interests and have similar goals is reassuring. We are not alone. Together we can make a difference. If you would like to come to the screening it’s possible to buy a ticket here for £1 and tea and coffee will be served before the film which starts at 7pm.

Just Transition Wakefield and Wakefield Cathedral look forward to welcoming you to the event.

Susan Morgan
Eco Group

Want to know more about the Eco Group?

Wakefield Cathedral’s Eco Group brings together members of the congregation, volunteers and staff to work towards making the cathedral a greener place to work and worship.

The Eco Group achieves its goals through a variety of activities, including partnerships with local community groups.

We invite anyone and everyone to reach out if they are interested in joining the eco group, or simply finding out more about what we do.

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