THERE will be dancing among the flower beds and singing beside the vegetables patches once more this summer when a popular East Oxford festival returns.

Children dressed in colourful outfits, mouth-watering food, live music from talented local musicians and stallholders from dozens of good causes will join thousands of visitors at the Elder Stubbs Festival.

The quirky community celebration returns to the Elder Stubbs Allotments on August 17 for its 29th jam-packed family day out.

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Organised jointly by group Restore and the Elder Stubbs Charity Allotments, the festival is designed to raise awareness of mental health and encourages visitors to meander through its assortment of activities and attractions, always including space for people to relax.

See our pictures and video from last year's Elder Stubbs Festival

Restore is an Oxfordshire mental health charity, working with people with mental ill health across the county.

Every year Restore members decide the theme of the festival and this time it will be the vibrant sunshine hues of yellow that brighten the Rymers Lane community space.

At the 2018 event it was all about the rainforest, with children dressing up as colourful rainforest animals in a fancy dress parade led by dance group Sol Samba and a rainforest-themed cafe.

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Previous imaginative themes have been more literary in nature and have included Peter Pan and Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.

Last year the diverse range of activities at the festival included everything from live cooking demonstrations with chef Sophie Grigson to pony rides for children.

The event each year attracts both old and new revellers drawn in by the sights and sounds coming from the normally peaceful allotments.

Lesley Dewhurst, chief executive of Restore, said “We’re over the moon that the Elder Stubbs Festival is returning for another year.

"The festival is a great way to tackle stigma, encourage anyone who needs it to access recovery, and support our service users to put on a fantastic show!"

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She added: “Last year we supported 967 people with coaching and mental health recovery, and we want our community to know that recovery can be a reality for anybody who needs it.

"Last year we supported 93 members to find or stay in paid work, and 37 people to begin volunteering—recovery really can lead to positive changes.”

Money raised by the family day will go towards helping Restore promote mental wellbeing and recovery.

The charity is looking for sponsorship for the festival from local businesses.

Anyone interested in sponsoring this year’s Elder Stubbs Festival can email