A FESTIVAL entirely dedicated to health and wellbeing took place in the Chalke Valley at the weekend.

The inaugural VERVE wellness festival fused together nature, fitness and the great outdoors in the beautiful surroundings of Church Bottom, Broad Chalke.

Around 500 visitors were able to take part in a range of activities including running, circuit training, Pilates, yoga and sound bathing. There were also a number of talks on subjects ranging from gut health and nutrition to sex and relationships.

The festival – being the first of its kind in the area – was the brainchild of neighbours Anna Hayward and Charlotte Cummings, from Ebbesbourne Wake. The pair were “thrilled to bits” with the success of the weekend.

Anna said: “It had such a relaxed and friendly vibe. Everyone said they had a great time and that they loved the classes, talks, food and drink.”

The VERVE festival also offered a children’s programme with bushhcraft, yoga, storytelling and a family fun run.

Visitors were asked to bring their refillable bottles and the environmentally-conscious organisers teamed up with the Good Plate Company to create a zero waste policy.

Fire pits were lit on the Saturday evening as guests enjoyed music from DJ Emma.

Plans are already afoot to repeat VERVE next year. Anna said: “We’re just trying to decide on a date.”