Sacred 950-year-old relic comes to town

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A SACRED relic dating back 950 years will be carried through Berkhamsted on Friday.

Police will escort churchmen carrying Our Lady of Walsingham on their shoulders from Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Park Street to Berkhamsted School’s chapel in Castle Street.

Catholics and Anglicans believe that in 1061 noblewoman Richeldis de Faverches saw a vision of Mary, who asked her to build a replica of the house where Angel Gabriel announced the birth of Jesus.

There will be a High Street candlelit procession for the statue and St Peter’s Church choir will sing hymns about Mary.

It will visit the town before going to St Albans Abbey, as part of four trips it will be taken on this year.

Father Michael Bowie, from St Peter’s Church, said: “This is the first time something like this has happened here. It is unique.”

The High Street will be closed between Park Street and Castle Street from 7pm to 7.30pm for traffic going to Hemel Hempstead.