Holistic Ways: Enhance your mind, body and spirit with alternative and complimentary therapies at Edinburgh event

A festival specialising in alternative and complimentary therapies will return to Edinburgh for its sixth consecutive year this weekend.

Holistic Ways aims to leave visitors feeling “uplifted and refreshed” and will take place this Sunday.

Speaking exclusively to EN4 News, Adrian Boiteux, one of the founders of Holistic Ways, said the festival stands out in the industry because of the unique content of each event they offer.

(Photo provided by Holistic Ways)

“The exhibitors that we bring to the event include leading holistic, complementary and alternative therapists and a wonderful selection of health, well-being and mind-body-spirit retailers,” Adrian said.

Adrian, his wife and his father were some of the founding members of Holistic Ways back in 2012 after recognising a lack of exposure for alternative, complementary and holistic therapies.

They now host events throughout the year in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen and Dundee.

The festival is taking place this Sunday from 11am until 5pm at the Edinburgh Corn Exchange, and over 40 exhibitioners will be attending, offering hypnotherapy, reflexology and deep tissue massages.

Taster sessions are available in order to provide visitors with the chance to experience the potential benefits of holistic therapies, which includes physical pain relief, improved sleeping patterns and reduced anxiety levels.

(Credit: EN4 News)

Bob and Helen Macintosh, founders of Krystalight, a retailer specialising in crystals and other holistic products, told EN4 News how important festivals such as Holistic Ways are.

“These events are extremely valuable as they give people the chance to discover – and most importantly, experience – many different disciplines, therapies and products all under one roof,” they said.

“We must never underestimate the value of human interaction, of meeting people face to face.”

The exposure that these events offer retailers and practitioners is vital to their growth.

“We find that not only does it drive traffic to our website, but people will contact us to discuss and receive advice on their specific requirements.

“In fact, we actively encourage this to ensure that customers do not impulse buy any product that may not be the most suitable for their needs.”

The festival will also feature music performances and dancers to showcase up and coming talent in Edinburgh.

Therapist Alan McIntyre, who will be in attendance on Sunday, specialises in Chinese Therapeutic Massage and believes that people must realise that no method will perform miracles in one session.

He said: “The only way to really feel profound long-term benefits from a treatment is to add it to your life as a continual help for your long-term health and wellbeing.

“Chinese Tuina medical massage is often an important M.O.T. for our client’s life’s stress relief, aches and pains.”

It is expected that Sunday’s festival will welcome between 350 and 450 people.

Following Sunday’s event, the next Holistic Ways festival will be held in Glasgow at the Trades Hall on March 21 and 22. Head over to their website to find out more information.

Edinburgh Art Fair 2019

Photo Credit: Arte in Europa

The Edinburgh Art Fair is set to celebrate its 15th anniversary this week.

The fair will take place between November 21 and 24 at the Edinburgh Corn Exchange, where it has been based since 2005.

It will showcase the work of over 500 artists from across the world, hosting a wide array of different artworks such as paintings, ceramics and glassware, and it’s all by up-and-coming contemporary artists.

There will be art for every type of person, whether it is your first time at the Art Fair or if you are returning once again, and gallerists will be on hand to talk to you about the pieces.

Edinburgh Art Fair exists so people of all backgrounds can partake in the experience. The pieces included in the exhibition come with different price tags in order to make it more accessible to a wider range of people. Artwork will be on sale from £100 all the way up to £50,000, so there should be something for most people.

Some of the exhibitors due to be at the fair include Alpha Art, Bourne Art, and Axis Art.

Tickets for the fair cost £4 for a standard day ticket, and if you are looking for a group ticket for more than 10 people, it will cost you £3 per person – but only when you buy online. If you are a student or unemployed, then you can buy a ticket at the door for £2.

Edinburgh Corn Exchange can be found off Chesser Avenue on New Market Road. EH14 1RJ.

Scottish Vegan Festival back for another year at the Edinburgh Corn Exchange

 

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The Edinburgh Corn Exchange was packed with activity on Saturday. Photo by Olivia Hill.

The Corn Exchange was full to the brim on October 20 as visitors flocked to the many stalls available at this year’s Scottish Vegan Festival.

The festival has been successfully running for the last two years and is the ideal event for vegans or those eager to learn more about veganism. Organised by Farplace Animal Rescue, an animal sanctuary and campaigns group, the Scottish Vegan Festival hosts a series of stalls including many hot and cold vegan eats, cosmetics, clothing and animal rights charities.

There are currently around 600,000 vegans across the UK and as the number of vegans increased by 350% in the last decade in Scotland alone, it seems to be a trend that will continue to rise in popularity. Whatever reason it may be — for, ethical, dietary or weight loss — there is a growing interest in how and why people should adopt a plant-based diet.

This rise in the number of people taking on a vegan diet means there is an increase in demand for vegan options, not just at restaurants, but in other public places such as schools and hospitals. ‘Go Vegan Scotland’, a group of volunteers who spend their time away from work trying to encourage others to see the benefits of veganism, was at the Scottish Vegan Festival campaigning for the introduction of legislation which would guarantee plant-based options on every public sector menu.

Barbara Bolton, a volunteer for Go Vegan Scotland, spoke about how the group approaches conversations about veganism with those who may be interested in or unsure of adopting a plant-based diet.

”We have information stalls where people approach us, ask us what they want to know about veganism and we try to have conversations with them to bring out what they think about other animals and whether or not they are truly comfortable with killing them when we don’t have to,” she said.

”Every time we buy a product that has come from an animal, whether it’s from their body or we have taken their eggs or their milk, what lies behind that is animal exploitation. So we tease out from people whether or not they’re genuinely comfortable that they’re spending their money, paying people to use and kill other animals for them.”

Barbara also emphasised that it’s important to approach veganism in a certain way in order to stick to it:

”If you think of veganism as a diet or a lifestyle, then you may find it challenging but when you understand what veganism really is, when you understand veganism is simply living in a way that respects other animals’ right to exist and that it’s about not exploiting and killing animals, then it will become much easier.”

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Lots of vegan treats were available on display including these Halloween inspired doughnuts. Photo by Olivia Hill.

The festival also provides small businesses with an opportunity to showcase their products in a suitable environment.

Emma Lean, from new independent clothing company ‘East Coast 88‘, said the festival was a great place to introduce people to their products:

”All of our t-shirts are organic, they’re all printed using water-based inks and they’re all  Fair Wear Foundation certified as well which means the people who have made them have been paid a living wage, they’re in a safe environment and they’ve got workers rights as well.”

”We wanted to get our name out there and we wanted to meet people who would be interested in buying the t-shirts. So we started coming along and I think this is our 3rd festival so far and it’s been the best one. The atmosphere here has been really nice, it’s really cool.”

The festival was heaving with ticket holders who had come along to try delicious vegan eats and buy the latest vegan-friendly clothes and cosmetics. But there were also a number of animal rights charities present, including OneKind, Scotland’s largest animal campaign group.

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OneKind sells vegan-friendly t-shirts to help fund their campaigns. Photo by Olivia Hill.

OneKind has held a number of successful campaigns including Scotland’s ban on the use of wild animals in travelling circuses. Sarah Mackenzie, the events and volunteers officer, discussed its latest campaign.

”The campaign we’re running today is to stop the growth of the salmon industry in terms of salmon farming in Scotland. At the moment the welfare issues within the industry are unacceptable and we’re asking the Government to put a stop to the plans for growth before these issues are dealt with.”

There is a significant problem with sea lice (parasites that feed on the scales and flesh of the salmon) on Scottish salmon farms and mortality rates are extremely high; 11 million salmon died last year alone. If you would like to learn more about this campaign, click here.

The Scottish Vegan Festival will be back on April 7 and October 20, 2019. To keep up to date with the latest news, take a look at their website here.

 

 

Edinburgh Young Drivers event strengthens safety message

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A written-off car at the Young Drivers Event

A crash survivor, who sustained life-threatening injuries in a car accident 17 years ago, will share her experience with local young motorists at a road safety education event this week.

The Streets Ahead Edinburgh Young Drivers event is back at the Corn Exchange for its sixth year running and will be hosted by Forth 1 DJ Grant Thomson, teaching sixth year students from various schools how to drive safer on the roads.

The popular event, which is sponsored by Digby Brown Solicitors, is jointly run by all partners in the Streets Ahead Edinburgh, including City of Edinburgh Council, Police Scotland, NHS Lothian, among other major local services.

Guest speaker Laura Torrence has been in a wheelchair since 1999 when she was in a serious car crash at the age of 16, who now works as a peer support advisor with charity Spinal Injuries Scotland.

As well as talks from experts, students attending the four-day event will have an opportunity to try out a selection of fun, interactive activities that stress the importance of cautious driving, including drunk goggles and a breathalyser.

The wreckage of a crashed car and a hard-hitting play called Friends Disunited performed by Baldy Bane Theatre Company will also help drive home safety messages.

Councillor Adam McVey, Transport Vice Convener, said: “There’s no doubt it’s an exciting time in a young person’s life when they first get behind the wheel as a newly qualified driver. However the statistics on road casualties and deaths among young people make for very sobering reading.

“Our Young Drivers events drive home some very hard-hitting messages in a fun and engaging way. Pupils and teachers who have attended in previous years have found the sessions extremely helpful and thought-provoking and I’m sure those coming along this year will get a lot out of it too.”

Facts from Road Safety Scotland state that road traffic is the biggest killer of young people in Scotland, and that an average of 54 accidents a week in the country involve a young driver between 17 and 25.

Laura Torrance said: “This is the prime age to target, especially as I was their age when I had my accident. We want to get it through to them that this is not a joke – this is serious stuff, this is your life we’re talking about. Driving can be really fun – I still enjoy driving myself – but it’s really important to make sure you drive safely and wear your seatbelt.”

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