Anne McIntyre

Anne combines Western Herbalism with Ayurvedic principles. She has a busy clinic in the Cotswolds as well as lecturing around the world and writing a number of books and online courses.

Anne has been involved in the organisation of HerbFest for many years and is delighted to be holding the conference at Dartingon Hall in Devon again this year.


Simon Mills

Simon Mills is a Cambridge graduate in medical sciences who has been a herbal practitioner in Exeter since 1977. In that time he has led the main organizations for herbal medicine in the UK and served on Government and House of Lords committees. Since 1997 he has been Secretary of ESCOP, the lead herbal scientific network in Europe, that produces defining monographs on herbal medicines for the European Medicines Agency. He has written award-winning seminal herbal medicine textbooks, notably with Kerry Bone the two editions of Principles and Practice of Phytotherapy and the Essential Book of Herbal Safety. He has long been involved in academic work, having co-founded the world’s first University centre for complementary health in Exeter (1987), the first integrated health course at a UK medical school at the Peninsula Medical School in Exeter (2000) and the first Master’s degree programme in herbal medicine in the USA (2001). He has published in many peer-reviewed academic journals including full clinical trials with herbal medicines. Simon is now Herbal Strategist at Pukka Herbs helping to build an exciting new education and research programme. He has a passion for translating the wisdom of world health care traditions into accessible and effective natural approaches for today’s troubles.


1 - Who needs probiotics? – a herbal approach for a vigorous microbiome

2 - Plants and the brain – exciting new leads on fatigue syndromes, dementia, and mental health

Dr Chris Etheridge MRSC, BSc (Hons) Phyto, BSc (Hons) Chem, CChem, DoIC, ARCS

Chris holds a first class honours BSc and a PhD in Medicinal Chemistry from Imperial College, London. He was a Lecturer and Research Fellow in Gene Therapy at Imperial’s Department of Chemistry and at the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics at St Mary’s Hospital from 1995-2002, where he taught on the undergraduate and postgraduate courses. He has published a diverse range of research in areas including synthetic, medicinal and biological chemistry, biochemistry, nutrition and herbal medicine. After this, Chris completed his professional training on the four-year Herbal Medicine degree programme at the College of Phytotherapy, East Sussex, where he graduated in 2006 with a first class honours BSc. His dissertation on quality control in herbal medicine was subsequently published. Chris currently works fulltime as medical herbalist and runs two busy practices in Central London and Epping. Chris is President of the College of Practitioners of Phytotherapy (CPP) (, Chair of the British Herbal Medicine Association (BHMA) ( and is currently acting Co-Chair of the European Herbal Traditional Medicines Practitioners Association (EHTPA) (  Chris is a guest lecturer at the University of Westminster (, the Centre for Nutrition Education (CNELM) (, the Institute of Optimum Nutrition (ION) (, the Northern College of Acupuncture ( and The Haven ( He is a writer for the charity Action for ME’s magazine ( and scientific advisor for Advanced Orthomolecular Research (, Potter’s Herbals (, the UK Tea and Infusions Association (, Twinings tea (, the Health Supplements Information Service (, Neolife (, Puressentiel ( and the charities Yes to Life ( and Kids Integrated Cancer Treatment.

1 - Support strategies for breast and prostate cancer using herbal medicine

2 - Constructing an effective case history for cancer patients: what questions to ask and how to maximise the therapeutic relationship


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Caroline Evans

Caroline Evans is a Herbalist, Naturopath, Nutrition consultant, Iridologist and aromatherapist. Some 15 years ago she embarked on a life changing journey to Cyprus where on a wing and a prayer she set up what became a working herb garden, a "sacred" space, herb shop, apothecary, farmers market and successful business. A mover and shaker in the herb world in Cyprus, Caroline was awarded for her environmental and community projects; she was instrumental in initiating positive change island wide in regards to environmental awareness; acting as a herbal business model and support for entrepreneurs; as an educator on responsible herb use; a natural birth campaigner; permaculture designer; as well as a promoter of buying local and suporting organic farmers. Now a mother of two, she has recently relocated back to the UK where she runs an online clinic and is a regular speaker. She now reaches a wider audience in order to teach and empower people on the sacred and essential connection of plants, community and health.


1 - Traditional use of Mediterranean herbs; A labour of love in Cyprus

2  - Pure alchemy; a live essential oil distillation

Michael McIntyre

Michael McIntyre has worked as a herbalist and acupuncturist for over 30 years and teaches both at home and abroad.  In 1987 he and Giovanni Maciocia launched the first UK school of Chinese herbal medicine where, with Mazin Al Khafaji, he was Principal until 2000.  Michael is well known for his work in developing the profession of herbal medicine and is currently Chair of the European Herbal and Traditional Medicine Practitioners Association. He is has been awarded an honorary doctorate by Middlesex University where for the last five years he has held a visiting professorship. Michael is also a former President, Fellow and Life member of the National Institute of Medical Herbalists, a life member of the Register of Chinese Herbal Medicine, an honorary member of the College of Practitioners of Phytotherapy and a member of the College of Medicine. He is the author of several books and articles on herbal medicine and has been the subject of two TV documentaries on herbal medicine made by the BBC and Channel 4.

1- Therapeutic strategies for treating the skin.

2 - Inflammation: an overview and treatment strategies.

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Sarah Jane Head

Sarah Jane Head has been a passionate herbwife since 1995. She grows over one hundred different medicinal plants in two gardens, forty-five miles apart in the West Midlands and the Cotswolds. She has been sharing her love of herbs since 2004, running workshops for adults and children and then a herbal apprenticeship and, since 2010, an annual festival. Between 2008 and 2012, she contributed a series entitled “Bringing the hedgerow into the kitchen” for the Herb Society website and wrote a number of articles for the HS magazine, Herbs. She has also published two herb books, ‘Playing with herbs: a beginner’s guide to Herbcraft’ and ‘Sanctuary Healing: energetic uses of plants and trees’ and two poetry books, ‘Springfield Sanctuary Poems and Songs’ and ‘Poems for difficult times’. Sarah’s career began in the NHS, monitoring services from the patient’s viewpoint and then the medico-legal system where she specialised in training in Coping with bereavement and loss. She is an experienced solution focused therapist, energy healer and piano teacher.

1 - Creative writing - recording your relationship with your herbal allies through poetry and prose.

2 - Working with lesser known plants in your kitchen or garden - herb Robert, sweet Cecily, bugle, crampbark, Solomon's seal (growing, harvesting, making medicines, using)

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Martin John

Martin is a Registered Practitioner of Chinese Medicine working within the Frome and N.E. Somerset area. He qualified with a double degree level (BHSc) in both Acupuncture and Herbal Medicine from the Southern School of Natural Therapies in Melbourne, Australia. Following practice in Australia as a member of the Chinese Medicine Registration Board (CMRB) of Victoria, he relocated back to the UK to continue his career. He currently sits on the council of the Register of Chinese Herbal Medicine (RCHM), which regulates Chinese Medicine Herbalists in the UK.

As part of his training, Martin has served clinical internships with Tran Nga of Eastern Medicine, Melbourne and Steven Clavey, a world-renowned specialist in the field of fertility and gynaecology in Chinese Medicine. He has also worked in Community Drug & Alcohol Rehabilitation and in support organisations for patients living with HIV whilst in Australia.

As an herbalist, he operates his own dispensary and uses herbs for most of his patients to address the many internal medicine issues that patients present with. His recent adoption of MPD (Medical Pulse Diagnosis), a highly refined system analyzing the pulse, under the tutelage of Robert Doane, is an exciting new addition to his diagnostic toolkit. His particular interest in digestive disorders stems from both personal experience and that of family members who received little benefit from conventional methods of treatment. His knowledge base combines the traditional theories with a modern application of herbs to deal with disorders such as IBS, SIBO, Leaky Gut Syndrome, Dysbiosis, IBD and other functional digestive disorders.

1 - Key concepts about digestion and the microbiome in Chinese Medicine

2 - Strategies for addressing bacterial overgrowths with Chinese Herbal Medicine

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Michael Isted


Michael Isted is a trained phytotherapist (BSc Hons), aromatherapist and nutritionist who started up his company The Herball in 2013. Michael set up The Herball as a portal to promote and celebrate the many ways in which we can integrate plants and plant preparations to invigorate and enrich our lives. Michael distils in traditional copper and extracts plants with C02, he also works closely with a number of small independent organic growers and plant workers in the UK, Europe & India to source, produce and sell authentic, artisanal plant-based products, such as infusions, hydrosols, spices, extracts, and oils. Michael frequently runs workshops across the globe teaching plant therapeutics while also consulting, creating and formulating botanical drinks for brands, cafes, bars, restaurants and spas. He is also currently in the process of launching new Herball concepts across Europe, North America and the Middle East. Michael has also just written and published ‘The Herball’s Guide to Botanical Drinks a book which reflects a very modern take on an ancient practice, revealing the history and processes of making botanical drinks with herbs & plant extracts.

1 - Creative workshop - 21st Century Herbal Medicine & Contemporary Alchemy

2 - Creative workshop - Contemporary Application of Plants and Plant Extracts

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Natalie Mady

Natalie Mady is a London-based community gardener and permaculturist. Her projects aim to creatively connect people in urban areas with the natural world. She is founder and director of Hackney Herbal - a social enterprise that promotes wellbeing through herbs. Through this, her work is centred around sharing knowledge about growing and using herbs in an accessible and supportive way. She coordinates projects that work in partnership with a number of Hackney-based mental health charities drawing on the therapeutic aspects of working with plants and nature. This aims to provide a preventative intervention to the onset of poor mental health as well as a pathway to recovery for those already suffering. She is passionate about supporting people to incorporate herbs into all aspects of their lifestyle and is particularly interested in models of peer support for community based herbal learning. Since 2015, Natalie has developed Hackney Herbal into a successful social enterprise where profits from selling herbal teas and running educational workshops and events can be reinvested into delivering free herb-inspired wellbeing initiatives across Hackney. She is also a trustee of The Herb Society.

1 - Permaculture and Herbs - Creating an abundant and resilient herb garden using permaculture principles

2 - Herb walk and talk - Tips and tricks for growing a variety of herbs at home

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Fred Gillam

Fred and his partner Natascha host the annual UK Medicinal Mushrooms Conference and run a busy voluntary community dispensary using medicinal mushrooms and herbs to promote health and wellbeing. Fred recently authored a large article on Native Medicinal Mushrooms in the ‘The Herbalist’. He is the author of “Poisonous Plants in Great Britain” and has presented a series of papers on medical ethnobotany to the Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institution. His business, 'The Wild Side of Life', born from a passion for empowering others to forage for plants and mushrooms for food and medicine, won Best Foraging Education Provider of The Year in the 2017 Food and Drink Awards. He has been featured collecting mushrooms with Gino D'Acampo on ITV's 'Countrywise' and on BBC Radio 2 with Jeremy Vine talking about poisonous plants. Fred has recently completed a course with John Hopkins University on designing and interpreting clinical trials and the 'Gut Check: Exploring Your Microbiome' programme with the University of Colorado, Boulder.

1 -Talk: Mushrooms, Molecules and the Microbiome - understanding the way we work with mushrooms and herbs

2 - Workshop: Making a Dual Extraction Broad Spectrum Extract from Medicinal Mushrooms

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Steve Taylor

Steve's journey with herbal medicine began when he was travelling in the Ecuadorian Amazon and experienced the successful treatment of a severe gut infection with a herbal remedy when conventional medicine had failed. The herbs used had been gathered by a local woman from the Rainforest. It fed a desire in him to both explore how such knowledge can be acquired and how to become an effective plant healer himself. He then studied Herbal Medicine at the College of Phytotherapy and set up a high street practice which he ran for 18 years. His interest in the use of herbs in folk traditions led him to the Romany healer Jasper Lee, who introduced him to storytelling as a medium through which Ancient wisdom is passed on in Oral Cultures. He went on to study Plant Spirit Medicine with Eliot Cowan, and to attend the Lakota Sundance ceremony in South Dakota by invitation of the Sundance Keeper Florence Bluethunder. However it was when attending a traditional Xhosa Ceremony in South Africa that he was told through traditional divination that he had a calling to train as an African Sangoma, Which took ten years of visits to Africa to complete. He was a founder member of the Ethnomedica project, which gathered memories from people who lived when the use of plants in the home was still common. Inspired by information gathered, he researched treating leg ulcers with fresh herbal poultices, finally presenting his completed research at the N.I.M.H. Conference in 2018. Steve continues to explore storytelling in the wisdom traditions of Europe, and uses stories as a teaching tool in workshops on herbal medicine and healing, while continuing to practice as a herbalist in West Sussex, U.K.


1.      Story telling; Fairies, plants, magic and healing.

2.      Story telling; Druids, trees, herbal origins.

Emma Lawrence

Emma is a registered yoga teacher (RYT) with Yoga Alliance.  'Prior to moving to the Cotswolds four years ago, I lived in London where my interest in yoga was born after two herniated discs within 18 months. As a professional dancer for many years, I found that yoga was the key in helping my body stay supple, strong, fluid and helping my mind stay centred. So I decided to take my love for yoga a step up and retrained professionally as a 'Seasonal Yoga' teacher.  The 'Seasonal Yoga' that I specialise in is based on the Vinyassa practices of Seasonal Flow. On a practical level it means that in the winter (when it is cold and daylight is short) we practice different postures and flows and utilising different yoga techniques than you would in the summer when we enjoy longer daylight hours and stronger energy flows.  My aim is to teach practical, beneficial and relaxing yoga that works with the season of summer.  You will then be able to use the wonderful and time honoured techniques of Yoga and ensure that you get the most out of the warmer months. 

During our time at Dartington, I will focus on asanas (postures), pranayama (breathing techniques) and meditation. I look forward to meeting you and enabling you to get the most out of seasonal yoga.'