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Thousands of pilgrims flock to annual day of worship at ‘England’s Nazareth’

PUBLISHED: 15:53 08 July 2018 | UPDATED: 16:01 08 July 2018

Rajasingam Sharveswaran, second from right, and his family were at the Tamil pilgrimage day in Walsingham. Picture: STUART ANDERSON

Rajasingam Sharveswaran, second from right, and his family were at the Tamil pilgrimage day in Walsingham. Picture: STUART ANDERSON

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Thousands of Tamils have flocked to the Shrine of the Virgin Mary at Walsingham in the largest pilgrimage of its kind the holy site has seen in some time.

A scene from Tamil pilgrimage day in Walsingham. Picture: STUART ANDERSONA scene from Tamil pilgrimage day in Walsingham. Picture: STUART ANDERSON

Around 15,000 people, many Tamils who live in the UK but others who have come from Sri Lanka and India for the occasion, visited the site’s second annual Tamil pilgrimage on Sunday.

Although most visitors were Catholics, the pilgrimage draws a number of Hindus who also revere the Virgin Mary.

Family groups stood for up to five hours to buy votive candles, before filing through the 14th century Slipper Chapel, and then on to an outdoor area where mass was held throughout the day at the Chapel of Reconciliation.

Among the visitors was Rajasingam Sharveswaran, from London, who comes to the north Norfolk village - known as England’s Nazareth - every year from his home in London.

A scene from the Tamil pilgrimage day in Walsingham. Picture: STUART ANDERSONA scene from the Tamil pilgrimage day in Walsingham. Picture: STUART ANDERSON

He said: “We come up every year to pray. I like it.”

A scene from the Tamil pilgrimage day in Walsingham. Picture: STUART ANDERSONA scene from the Tamil pilgrimage day in Walsingham. Picture: STUART ANDERSON

Tharma Shanmudampillai, second from right, and his family were at the Tamil pilgrimage day in Walsingham. Picture: STUART ANDERSONTharma Shanmudampillai, second from right, and his family were at the Tamil pilgrimage day in Walsingham. Picture: STUART ANDERSON

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