On Saturday morning I was in the midst of dappled green light in a beautiful wood, listening to dance music through headphones, whilst watching my youngest son play in the stream with two new friends.
Trill Summer Festival, 1-5 August 2012, is the best little festival for families I’ve ever been to. For the kids there’s bushcraft, raft-building, high-wire climbing and lake-swimming. For crafty folks, there’s willow weaving, felt making, chocolate cooking, postcard printing, paint spinning and lantern making.
Little ones enjoyed face painting, kids’ massage, campfire story-telling, a Troll Treasure Hunt and rides on the pony and trap.
For muscially minded, there were impromptu acoustic music sessions, drumming classes, singing in harmonies, a ceilidh, and a silent disco – the bit where you get to wear headphones and dance in the woods.
There’s also the most amazing yoga platform in the trees. I can only describe the experience of practising here as like being in a 3D bubble of green translucence – to the sound of birdsong, steam trickles and, sometimes – this being England, rain on the canvas canopy above your head.
And whenever you feel hungry, there is truly delicious home-cooked and home-grown food on sale in the cafe: feasts of vegetables and salads, sprinkled with edible flowers and sometimes accompanied by home-cured venison or local cheese.
On Saturday night we paraded through the woods carrying our home-made lanterns and gathered round the lake to watch as a fire sculpture took light.
It’s all the brainchild of Romy Fraser, who founded Neal’s Yard Remedies in 1981. She and her team have established the 300-acre organic farm and educational centre here at Trill Farm close to the Jurasic Coast in Devon.
As well as being a working farm and vegetable garden, the Trill Trust runs all sorts of courses throughout the year. I’m hoping to take a yoga retreat there in 2013 – and I will definitely be back for their next summer festival.