Science and Wellbeing

Flanked by Robert Lenkiewicz’s incredible mural (considered his masterpiece), the Round Room is an unforgettable venue. For a second year it’s set to become our Science lab for the weekend, a centre for futuristic thought and scientific wonder. Try your hand at experiments, sit in on a life-changing lecture or take part in a lively debate – there’s something for everyone.

In the Round Room this year, you can adopt a piece of space junk and communicate with it via Twitter in Project Adrift, a combination of art and science which throws light upon the 27,000 individual pieces of debris currently being tracked as they orbit above us.

From space junk to sea junk, the festival’s creative and cultural partner, the University of Plymouth will join with campaigners Surfers Against Sewage to present The Killer in our Seas, looking at ways of solving the enormous problem of the plastic which makes up 75% of all marine debris.

Bestselling author and Port Eliot favourite, Simon Garfield, will convert the Round Room into a clock and explain what makes us tick. He’ll puzzle over the reasons why time seems to slow down during an accident and how timekeeping came to dominate our lives.

Back to sound, this July marks the 60th anniversary of the first meeting of Paul McCartney and John Lennon. Come Together: The Sonification of Lennon-McCartney uses a scientific database to plot the lyrics of 156 songs by McCartney and 131 songs by Lennon, to produce a classical duet that shows how each musician’s happiness developed throughout their friendship via soprano line and tenor.

Dr Dean Burnett, a neuroscientist whose Guardian Science blog, ‘Brain Flapping’, has been viewed over 13 million times in the last three years, will be delving into the mysteries of our mischievous grey matter.

Also presented in collaboration with the University of Plymouth: Harnessing the Waves explores how wave power could provide our energy in the future; Blast into Science is a riotous, eruptive entry into the world of science, perfect for families and the place to head if you’re fascinated by volcanoes, robots and all manner of explosions; while Atkins’ Gigantic Panorama presents the strange world of Victorian science and technology – steam-powered path to peace and prosperity through science.

Phew! After all that thinking, you’ll need some pampering. In our secret garden amongst the Pampas grass, you’ll find Lark’s Haven, the festival’s wellness enclosure, hidden by ancient trees and secluded by scented shrubs.

Jamie Catto, founding member of Faithless and 1 Giant Leap, invites you to laugh your head off and become aware of how much more space there is for mischief and playfulness in the world, in Transforming Shadows, a one-off workshop designed to heal blocked emotions and escape old habits.

Step into the world of Morning Gloryville with Samantha Moyo, a morning dance party aiming to uplift, energise, make you laugh and well-and-truly set you up for a day at the festival.

Sharing insights into the minds and preoccupations of world leaders, international speaker and writer, Mac Macartney, will coax you into Courageous Action for a better world, seeking to inspire the emergence of the leader in each of us.

Pilates sessions for complete beginners and experienced flexible types will invite you to improve your fitness and wellbeing; Alan Lowen’s The Art of Being® will set out a path of self-realisation, life fulfilment and spiritual awakening; and the Alexander Technique will teach you to do whatever you do efficiently and confidently and without pain, tension and stress.

The range of luxury therapies includes Bespoke Spa Massage, Reflexology, Energy Healing, Herbal Remedies and Shamanic Tuning; and you can look to the future by booking in for a Tarot session.

A Shamanic Journey Sound Bath will aim to leave you feeling empowered and upbeat; Somatics will show you how to move with flexibility, co-ordination and ease and make you more than familiar with ‘pandiculations’; and Shakti Bodies is a combination of Shakti Dance and Kundalini Yoga which requires no experience in yoga or dance.

And you won’t find a festival with a more exhaustive line-up of yoga – aerial, stand-up paddleboard (SUP), disco and yin yoga to name a mere handful.

Those are just a few of our highlights – be sure to the full science and wellbeing line-ups.