HAVING not been to a festival for nearly two years they are now coming thick and fast with this weekend being the Purbeck Valley Folk Festival which is always one of my favourites.

There are a number of reasons for this including the fact that it is close to home, it’s always a very relaxed crowd and of course the music.

I am not someone who would normally listen to folk music but every year I come here and discover loads of bands that are new to me and make a mental note to check out when I get home.

This weekend is not just about the music though, there are plenty of other activities going on with different areas dedicated to healing, crafts, storytelling, poetry, circus skills and the option to go on a guided walk taking in the local area including Corfe Castle.

I arrived on Thursday evening and had a quick wander around, this didn’t take long as not all of the site is open on the first night. The queue at the bar was pretty long so I stuck with tea and managed to catch bits of sets from Katy Hooper, the Swamp Stomp String Band and a couple of others before setting off home for the night.

On my return the entire site was now open and the festival was in full swing. There are opportunities to visit the Circus of Science and see Einstein take on Frankenstein’s Monster, take in some comedy in the Duck Tent or just move from stage to stage taking in the variety of music on offer.

This being the UK the weather was as unpredictable as ever with it being bright and sunny when I left home only for the mist and rain to settle in later in the evening.

Still there is plenty of room in the barns and tents to accommodate everyone and the music to lift the spirits.

The highlight of the festival for me so far has to be Tankus The Henge, with their upbeat tunes and energetic delivery they set the evening alight and won many new fans.

They were then followed by Elephant Sessions, another firm favourite on the festival scene.

As I write this it is early Sunday morning with a full day of activity still to look forward to at this great little festival.

I plan on catching The Wareham Wailers, The Bomo Swing, a bit of comedy and then end the day with the Monster Ceilidh.

Well that’s the plan but who knows what will catch my eye as I wander the site!