A wellbeing weekend being held by Brightlingsea WinterFest on Saturday and Sunday, February 15 and 16, will bring some welcome brightness into the town which has been badly hit by Storm Ciara.
The free weekend of activities that are good for the mind and body will be taking place at the Fresh Fitness studio in Tower Street, Brightlingsea as part of the month-long annual WinterFest.
Alix Sheppard, co-founder of Brightlingsea WinterFest said: “We are very pleased to be linking up with Lucy Reid at her beautiful Fresh Fitness studio for what will be a fantastic weekend devoted to wellbeing.
“Many people do feel a bit intimidated by going to a gym and on Saturday there will be a chance for everyone to take part in drop-in taster sessions, including zumba and pilates, in a friendly and relaxed environment.
“Sunday will be more of a relaxing holistic day with activities that are good for the mind, body and soul and a series of talks on mental wellbeing, emotional self care, nutrition and child health. The sessions are all free of charge and cakes will be on sale in aid of WinterFest causes.
“We are also delighted to be welcoming back the WinterFest arts and crafts weekend organised by local artist Julie Taylor-Lange. There is a great range of arts and crafts to try, from pottery to chain mail. More details about how to book are on the WinterFest website.
“WinterFest has had an incredibly good start this year and we are looking forward to the rest of the month's events. It is heartening to see how it helps bring people together, especially in the light of the awful battering Brightlingsea has suffered in the recent storms.
“The community spirit is strong in Brightlingsea and WinterFest has become a symbol of hope in the town.”
Since it began in 2015 WinterFest has flourished, with events happening throughout February.
It aims to raise spirits, promote wellbeing and foster a sense of community, combating depression and isolation.
Attractions include music of all kinds, arts and crafts workshops and spoken word. The wellbeing weekend at Fresh Fitness in Brightlingsea, taking place on Saturday and Sunday from 11am to 3pm, is a new addition to the programme this year. Another innovation for WinterFest 2020 is The Great Big Pancake Party happening on Shrove Tuesday.
Brightlingsea Creative Writers' group will be at Brightlingsea Library on Saturday February 15 at 11am giving recitals from their new anthology and highlighting the link between creative writing and wellbeing. On Friday February 21, Brightlingsea-based shanty group The Motley Crew will be singing in the Swan pub from 7.45, followed by a two-day arts and crafts event over the weekend of the 22nd and 23rd at Brightlingsea Sailing Club. There will also be the chance to see a host of local performers while browsing the bookshelves at the Music in the Library event on the 22nd.
Most WinterFest events are free and bucket collections are made at the various venues involved in the festival.
Eighty per cent of funds raised will go into the WinterFest Wellbeing Fund which gives grants to people in Brightlingsea to help improve their mental, physical or social wellbeing. Twenty per cent of the proceeds will go to the mental health charity Mid and North East Essex Mind.