SpaFest reveals speaker line-up and plans for exciting new project

SpaFest will take place at the Gwel an Mor resort in Cornwall from September 12-14, 2023


By Wendy Golledge

27 July 2023

The organisers of SpaFest have revealed the speaker line up for this year’s event, and also shared details of an exciting new Inner Goddess calendar project to help people living with cancer.

Kicking off SpaFest 2023, Aqua Sana group spa manager Kay Pennington will share a heartfelt session entitled ‘Standing In My Light’.

Pennington will be sharing her leadership thoughts including honest insights into her personal journey of resilience and how ‘showing up’, even during the toughest of times, makes a difference.

People, planet and health

The experiential event for spa and wellness professionals will continue its focus on people, planet and health with a key note speech from Surfers Against Sewage founder and former sustainability director of the Eden Project, Chris Hines MBE – which he says stands for ‘Moaning Bloody Environmentalist!’

He will be looking at how the wellness sector can collaborate to create change.

GAIA founder Diane Nettleton in the 'tea and therapy' tent at SpaFest 2022

Reconnection with wellbeing

The founder of Pukka Teas, Tim Westwell, will chair a panel discussion on the changing landscape of health and wellness, along with the founders of wellbeing retreat Cabilla Cornwall and Clare Fortescue from the Boconnoc Estate.

Sue Harmsworth, MBE will be hosting a discussion on integrative wellbeing and its role within health and cancer care.

“SpaFest places its focus on the individual. It’s not about being spoken to but about being engaged and about looking after ourselves, so we can look after others,” says founder Amanda Winwood.

“It offers industry professionals time to step back and look at the impact we have as people in the wellness industry. Just as importantly, it also offers attendees time to look inside themselves and take a chance reconnect with nature.”

Jamie Edwards will be leading SpaFest 2023 with his ‘Trained Brain’ leadership programme on September 12

Wellbeing workshops

This year’s workshops will include gong bathing with Jill Russell. Pippa Best, the founder of Sea Soul Blessings, will be offering forest bathing and sea meditation at Portreath Beach and in the ancient Tehidy Woods.

Sound artist Justin Wiggan will share his explorations into the sounds made by plants. He will reveal a sound and light scape created exclusively for Made for Life and the Made for Life Foundation.

Additional workshops are being led by Amy Bates of Beauty Rebellion; Avril Greenaway of Cleaner Seas and Lizzi Larbastier of Blue Mind.

There will be insights into self care and the ‘real conversation’ from Jen Warren, director of clinical nursing at Compton Care, oncology surgeon Polly King RCHT and Scented Saviours’ Laura Broady.

Woman sat in wild flowers
Julia Leckey, CEO at Thinking Fearlessly, features in the Inner Goddess calendar

Supporting the Made for Life Foundation

SpaFest is a key fundraiser for the Made for Life Foundation (registered charity 1138846), founded in 2010 by Winwood to provide holistic support for people with and recovering from cancer.

New for this year, Winwood will launch the exclusive Made for Life Inner Goddess calendar at SpaFest.

It features key industry figures who have experienced or are living with cancer, plus those who work to help people with the disease.

All profits from calendar sales will go into the Made for Life Foundation and the SATCC, founded by Sue Harmsworth MBE, in a strong new partnership between the two charities.

Jointly, their role is to promote and ensure a standard of acceptable accredited training, appropriate for those therapists, salons and spas treating those who are living with cancer.

From left: Amanda Winwood, Laura Broady, Teresa O'Farrell and European Spa's Wendy Golledge at the Inner Goddess calendar shoot at Coworth Park

Inner Goddess calendar

Shot at the Dorchester Collection’s Coworth Park in July, Winwood says of the project: “I wanted to create something to celebrate all this industry does for people living with cancer and the people who give so much.

“Each month of the year features someone who has been touched by cancer in some way, or is striving to make life better for those living with cancer, all celebrating their inner goddess.”

The calendar costs £15 and is available to pre-order here.


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Tickets for SpaFest

Tickets for the SpaFest event (excluding accommodation) cost £375 excluding VAT.


This includes the full three-day programme with Jamie Edwards – 10% of every ticket sale will be donated to the SATCC and Made for Life Foundation.


The price includes access to programming across all three days, as well as the welcome dinner, SpaFest celebration with leading Cornish band, The Stowes hosting a ceilidh and a final farewell lunch.


The registration fee also includes all refreshment breaks as well as two lunches, two dinners and a gift bag.

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