A FESTIVAL fanatic who quit a high-powered legal career to become a yoga teacher is preparing to hold her third annual music and yoga festival in South Oxfordshire.

Rachel Cox, who lives in Wheatley, held her first Om & Bass festival at Braziers Park near Wallingford in 2015 for 200 people.

This year she is expecting four times that number to flock to the feel-good festival from June 23 to 25.

The former Headington School pupil said anyone could enjoy the event whether they treat it as a spiritual journey or just slow-motion exercise.

She said: "It's a pretty unusual festival for lots of reasons – mostly because there is so much free stuff.

"Tickets cost £95 for the weekend and children go for free but I get a lot of people on benefits or low income or struggling families asking for low-price tickets or offering to volunteer, and we can always find a way.

"Yoga has become massive with middle class people and I'm trying to redress the balance slightly, so the festival is very multicultural with martial arts and dance from Africa and India."

Miss Cox, 35, who lives at the Oxford Yoga Retreat in Wheatley, started her career headed in a very different direction.

After leaving school she joined a so-called 'magic circle' law firm in London – Allen & Overy – one of the top eight legal firms in the country.

It was there that she first started practicing yoga with the company's in-house teacher.

She was then poached for what she thought was a better job with more money at another firm, but in the new environment was quickly overcome by stress.

Remembering her yoga teaching, she decided to quit the city altogether and follow a calmer path teaching the ancient meditative exercise.

She moved back to Oxford and started teaching under the banner Wild Human.

Her speciality at Om & Bass is yoga combined with music, hence the festival's name – a play on the dance music genre drum n' bass.

She said: "The yoga we teach is for all levels and all ages and at the festival there are back-to-back classes.

"Physical yoga is just like doing extremely slow meditative exercise, but it's far more challenging than it appears – people always say 'I didn't expect to work up a sweat doing that'."

Regarding the spiritual side of the practice she said: "It depends what your belief system is: if you're atheist it's just exercises that make you calmer, but if you are religious or spiritual you can believe it is a journey inside yourself."

The music at Om & Bass is mostly relaxing reggae and soothing soul, including sets from Oxfordshire bands such as Storyteller.

Find out more and buy tickets at wildhuman.co.uk