THERE were fun and frolics in Ashley Cross as the annual Grooves on the Green Festival got under way this weekend.

This year's festival was specially tailored as a family-friendly event with plenty of activities for children alongside music from the likes of Gary Stringer, who toured the world with West Country rock band Reef and wrote the band’s stone soul anthem ‘Place Your Hands’.

He took to the main stage on Sunday afternoon, along with highly-rated Devon singer songwriter Amy Newton and the Baker Brothers funk collective.

Among the activities on offer were zorbing, face painting, henna tattoos, a set of musical vibrating massage beds particularly aimed at youngsters with special needs and various games and attractions.

Poole Rugby Club gave visitors a lesson in tackling and handling skills, and there was a silent disco and silent yoga.

Organiser Jan Crump, of nearby bar Le Bateau, said: "It has been amazing, we have increased our children's entertainment and activities this year and it has become a really big family event.

"Both days have been really busy with more than 3,000 people attending and there has been a great atmosphere.

"And we think we have raised quite a lot money for our chosen charity, Diverse Abilities Plus. They do a great job and look after my son, who has special needs, and we have raised over £15,000 for hem in the last few years."

Also new for this year were a VIP area, the Groove Garden, set before the stage and hosted by Saxe Coburg, and a magic mirror allowing visitors to get a momento of the event.

There was food and drink from Chicken & Blues, a hog roast, Bratwurst sausages, lamb, venison and beef burgers, wood-fired pizza and a varied array of snacks from Just Fries.

The music line up also featured top local party band BoMo Swing, Si Genaro, whose appearances on BBC’s The Voice earned him a cult following, ska favourites The Guns of Navarone and the Mother Ukers with their ukulele versions of pop and rock classics.