The St Magnus Way project to create a virtual experience and improve accessibility on the physical route has won a £2,500 award from the Calor Rural Community Fund.
Earlier this month, the project was announced as one of the finalists in the £2,500 category. This was after already raising a total of £2,274 throughout a six-week crowdfunding campaign to create a virtual Way for would-be pilgrims unable to walk the, at times, challenging route in person and improve accessibility on the path itself.
The St Magnus Way was able to reach the final due to the tremendous support of the local community and their friends from further afield.
Alasdair Flett on behalf of The St Magnus Way project team said:
“A massive thank you to all who persevered with the somewhat convoluted format of the combined crowdfunding/grant application initiative.
“These past few months have proved the existence of a mass of enthusiasm for the Way. It was great to see how much people valued the St Magnus Way, especially at a time when completing the route in its entirety was impossible during lockdown.
“Coinciding with the campaign’s end, however, was the reopening of tourism and, with few attractions open to visitors, outdoor pursuits became the main draw for the small number venturing to Orkney.
“Winning one of the six £2,500 awards allows us to explore a full range of options in developing a lasting and valuable resource for the St Magnus Way.
“We will be looking into using aerial drone footage, 360-degree imagery and our rich library of pre-existing resources to build a digital experience that captures the essence of the pilgrimage for those who cannot currently walk the Way due to barriers of distance and accessibility.
The team are keen to have pilgrims involved in how the virtual experience is developed in order to improve the resource.
“We want pilgrims to have a say in how we develop the virtual experience and are keen to hear the views of a wide variety of people so that we can build the best resource possible. Please watch this space for further updates and information on consultation.”
Link: St Magnus Way
Related story: St Magnus Way: A Literary Pilgrimage
Here’s the announcement of all the winners on Facebook