I've made a custom walker to use with wp_list_pages to modify the output to have thumbnails show. The goal is to have a list show up in a page template, which lists all children with their children.

The walker I have below seems to work for getting the thumbnail and page title but doesn't get the url of the page. Do I need to somehow use a getprefixed function instead of just esc_attr?

            class bio_walker extends Walker_Nav_Menu

            function start_el(&$output, $item, $depth, $args)

            $output .= "<li id='menu-item-$item->ID' class='bio-list'>";

            $attributes  = "class='highlight-$item->ID'";

            ! empty( $item->attr_title )
                and $attributes .= ' title="'  . esc_attr( $item->attr_title ) .'"';
            ! empty( $item->target )
                and $attributes .= ' target="' . esc_attr( $item->target     ) .'"';
            ! empty( $item->xfn )
                and $attributes .= ' rel="'    . esc_attr( $item->xfn        ) .'"';
            ! empty( $item->url )
                and $attributes .= ' href="'   . esc_attr( $item->url        ) .'"';

            $pageid = get_post_meta ( $item->ID, '_menu_item_object_id', true);
            $thumbnail = get_the_post_thumbnail( $item->ID, 'bio-thumb', true);

            $title = get_the_title($item->ID);

            $spanclass = "class='span-$item->ID bio-list-span'";

            $item_output = $args->before
                . "<a $attributes>"
                . $thumbnail
                . "<span $spanclass>"
                . $title
                . $pageid
                . "</span>"
                . '</a> ';

            $output .= apply_filters(
            ,   $item_output
            ,   $item
            ,   $depth
            ,   $args

2 Answers 2


figured it out - in case anyone else stumbles upon this with a similar question:

The proper walker to extend is Walker_Page, not Walker_Nav_Menu.

Walker_page is located in /wp-includes/post-template.php (line 978).


Try to link the menu to the location (on WP dashboard > appearance > Menus) which you're linking the walker to.

I.e if you have:

  'walker' => new custom_walker(),
  'theme_location' => 'primary',

Go ahead and link the menu you want to work with on WP Dashboard to the 'primary' location, so the walker can effectively access the $item object.

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