The Atkinson: Festival of Wellbeing

The Atkinson: Festival of Wellbeing

Keep active, sociable and creative is the take-home message from a five-day-long wellbeing festival at The Atkinson, being held to coincide with World Mental Health Day (Friday 10 October).


Over five days Monday 6-Friday 10 October, there will be dozens of free activities and events for both the public and healthcare professionals.


On Monday 6 October drop-in arts and crafts sessions will provide the opportunity to chat to others whilst you flex your creative muscles. Aimed at older people and those at risk of social isolation, these activities are tasters of classes available throughout the year. Artist-led informal sessions include ceramics and painting (11am-3pm).


A taster session for The Atkinson’s free Think Differently, Cope Differently course, based on the Five ways to Wellbeing, will also run on the first day of the festival (2pm).


The principles and techniques of Mindfulness are explored on Tuesday, which is a day aimed at both healthcare professionals and anyone with an interest in arts, health and complimentary therapies. A drop in practical session from 10.30am-12noon will introduce the basics of mindfulness, with opportunities for participation. Although intended for those working in healthcare, the session is open to the public.


In the afternoon, there will be a presentation and discussion on the principles and impact of creativity on health. A ‘show and tell’ networking opportunity will allow healthcare organisations to share good practise and promote their work. Contributions include speakers from Merseycare’s Recovery College, Creative Alternatives, SAFE Productions and Collective Encounters.


Zumba, Tai Chi, chair-based exercise, cycling and walking are all in the mix for Wednesday, a day dedicated to the importance of physical activity. There’s plenty to keep you on your toes, with a guided walk from The Atkinson to Queens Gardens in the morning, Tai Chi at 11am and a Zumba class at 1pm.


‘Good Food Good Mood’ healthy eating promotions and free samples will be available in the Bakery Café all week and a cycle parade display featuring old bicycles, film and photography also runs 11am-3pm.

Thursday’s focus is on dementia. Eight-hundred thousand people in the UK have dementia and the figure is set to top a million by 2021. Rates of diagnosis are rising each year and it is widely acknowledged to be one of the UK’s greatest health challenges.


Amongst the activities planned for Thursday are a pop up 1950s living room, which is designed to encourage positive reminiscences in older people with dementia. Backed by Deborah Meaden and Peter Jones from Dragons Den, Rem Pods are becoming an increasingly common fixture in care homes and NHS gerontology services around the UK.


Learn how you can help people with the condition at two Dementia Friends training sessions (11am-12noon and 2.30-3.30pm) and find out more about what’s going on for a person with dementia from Dr Lisa Williams, a consultant in gerontology and psychiatry (1-2pm). Take time out for 10 minutes relaxation with mini-massage and reflexology sessions available 1-3pm and enjoy a rousing performance from the Southport Alzheimers Society’s Singing for the Brain group.


Philip Wroe, community partnerships manager for The Atkinson said: “During the late 18th century, Southport was conceived as a seaside resort specifically for convalescence and healing, so it is only fitting that wellbeing is integral to everything we do at The Atkinson.


“Sefton’s award winning arts on prescription service Creative Alternatives is now based at The Atkinson and we’re increasingly operating as a wellbeing hub that offers programmes and activities, advice, information and signposting to support healthier lifestyles.


“The aim of the four day festival, in the run up to World Mental Health Day, is to increase awareness of our offer to service users, their families and carers and also to healthcare professionals”.


For more information please visit or call the Box Office on 01704 533333.




Festival of Wellbeing

Monday 6 – Friday 10 October


The Atkinson
Lord Street




In person: Visit The Atkinson box office on Lord Street

For tickets: visit the website call Box Office on 01704 533333


Notes to Editors

For more information, interviews, images or review tickets, please contact Emma Lloyd at The Atkinson on 0151 934 2129 |

About The Atkinson

The Atkinson is Southport’s beautiful new home for music, theatre, art, poetry, literature and history, right in the middle of Lord Street in Southport. Significant investment has been made in refurbishing the stunning 19th century buildings, to create a really welcoming multi art-form venue with a strong contemporary feel.

The Atkinson offers an exciting and varied destination for families, cultural tourists and arts enthusiasts alike, with a full day and night time offer. Wile the day away visiting the new shop, that sells gifts and contemporary crafts from regional makers and then relax in the Bakery, choosing from a selection of artisan bread sandwiches, cakes and sharing platters. You can even take little bit of The Atkinson home with you from the delicatessen. Wonder through the major exhibitions and see performances from some of the UK’s foremost musicians, actors, performers and companies, films, family activities and much more.

In October 2014 The Atkinson becomes something even more exciting for visitors, with the opening of the museum which will tell the story of Southport and Sefton as well as the area’s dramatic maritime history. It will also be the new home for the Goodison Egyptology Collection, a remarkable collection of archaeology that has not seen for over 40 years.





Posted on 11 September 2014 under General news

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