'A  wonderful oasis of calm'

Yoga & Yoga Therapy: 

'Gilly is a wonderful Yoga teacher! She is highly experienced and offers a welcoming, supportive environment for any level of Yoga enthusiast.  We are a Mum and Daughter with completely different levels of yoga fitness and yet we are quite able to attend the same yoga class. Gilly has the ability to help everyone adapt each position to their own individual level and always remembers who needs a little bit of extra help or who has a problem with a knee or a wrist or a back. For me, one thing that makes Gilly stand out amongst other yoga teachers is her good sound knowledge of human anatomy.  This is invaluable when teaching someone who has any form of injury - my partner had several weeks of yoga with Gilly to help with a back problem, without Gilly’s knowledge he could have done more damage than good and over a period of time Gilly designed a program of positions for him to follow which built his strength up gradually and safely.'
                                                                                              Justine and Pat Hayhurst

'We started our yoga practice with Gilly 18 months ago and in every positive way it has absolutely changed our lives.'                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                                   Christine & Michael Heppell

'I came to the Avani School of Yoga for private tuition following some health problems that made class work elsewhere sometimes a bit difficult for me. I have to say it was the best move ever as Gilly has provided perfect asanas for me and complemented this with  inspirational extras like chakra focusing and sound healing. I think she is an exceptional teacher in bringing yoga back towards mind body union... Northumberland is so fortunate to have such an enlightened school.' 
                                                                                                                               Dr Elaine Perry 
'I was new to yoga when I first met Gilly 18 months ago.  Through her caring, supportive and giving teachings I now feel like a confident yogi.  Gilly has guided me patiently through my personal journey of enlightenment into the body, mind and spirit.  Yoga has taught me how to relax my mind, breathe deeply and find a balance within myself I have never been able to find before.  Avani yoga studio is much more than learning yoga poses and having a flexible body, it has been a truly life changing experience for me, and Gilly has helped me find my “light” again.'
  Christine Nugent   
'As a children's nurse with a back problem that had kept me from working for 4 months I came to Gilly  hoping for some improvement. My expectations have been far exceeded and I am delighted to be well enough to return to my busy ward.  I saw Gilly individually at first and have now joined a group and Gilly has been incredibly supportive and encouraging throughout.  My strength and flexibility are hugely improved, I feel toned and more energetic. I am taking far fewer pain killers and feel much better able to relax. I feel more connected to my physical and spiritual self and am thoroughly enjoying the practice.  
Gilly has enabled me to manage my back in a positive way and has given me the tools to continue to improve.  I have put off the spinal surgery I have been offered for the meantime.  I would recommend her yoga teaching to anyone, and will be encouraging all my nursing colleagues to try it! I cannot thank you enough Gilly! 
Jo Raglan 

'We were, to a person, enormously grateful for Gilly’s work with us – and week on week foster carers returned with examples of how they had used the exercises to reduce their own stress reactions, to aid rest and to manage difficult situations. In their own words...

“I feel really privileged to have been part of this group working with Gilly – I go home feeling really content”  Sara

“ Last weeks’ session seemed to last right through from Wednesday until Sunday – I was sleeping better and I can feel I’m more chilled. Sunday we had a bit of a set-back and I went into the bedroom and spent some time doing the breathing. My heart stopped hammering and I just felt better about things – it helped clear my head. Now I’m really looking forward to my next ‘top-up’”  Rachel

“ I know myself when I’m stressed I tend to withdraw. Now I still withdraw – but I do the breathing and some of the movements and you know what, I can go back out there and I’m just cooler, more confident. Thank-you so much Gilly.”  Mary 

'...Gilly also demonstrated how, within the bounds of safe care, some techniques that could safely be used with traumatised children, something one carer found enormously helpful with a young person who finds settling to sleep very difficult due to her traumatic past.  The work Gilly has done has received such positive and heart-felt feed-back,  the decision was made immediately to invite her to return and continue working with us – and luckily for us, she can!  I am really looking forward to continuing to work alongside Gilly and would recommend her without a moments’ hesitation to anyone interested in a gentle, kind and thoughtful introduction to yoga therapy." 
Susanne McGarry, Psychotherapist, Foster Care Associates

'A space set in the beautiful countryside of Northumberland, somewhat hidden and inextricable from nature and its natural healing energy... combining [Gilly's] yogic style with the earth, the elements and the seasons to bring the yoga practice in harmony with the natural world... reconnecting us to our breath, our bodies, our presence and our pulse in the universe, the matrix of which we are all a part... thank you for the love and the work that reconnects.'
                                                                                                                                    Zoey Gibb

'For me, the school is a wonderful oasis of calm. That I’ve also seen real improvements to my long standing back problem as a direct result of the work with Gilly is a massive extra benefit.' 
                                                                                                                                                    Will Dracup

'Gilly is a skilled and experienced facilitator of Council, leading the group with the utmost care and sensitivity. Under Gilly's guidance, I found the practice of council felt natural, easy and accessible. A deep and fulfilling experience containing much healing, both on a personal, societal and planetary level. Council is a non-hierarchical practice, but nevertheless requires facilitation and instruction. Gilly's blend of gentle wisdom, supportive presence and clear boundaries is spot on.'  RB

'I completed the ‘Introduction to Council’ course in June 2020 and would really recommend it.  This practice involves speaking and deeply listening from your heart.  Although it is not therapy, it is therapeutic and it provides a safe platform where you can talk and listen without judgement or comment.  I really felt heard and supported by the group. This practice was new to me, but it is something I can apply to my everyday life and business.  I’m not good in groups, but found this to be comfortable, at a steady pace and the teachings are so enlightening.  Gilly is a great tutor and I feel that I have learnt so much from her.  Because of my experience of this course, I enrolled on the facilitator training, which I am finding fascinating.  This way of being has become a way of life to me - it has certainly made me look at my connections with others in a different way and I feel calmer and look at each aspect of my life with gratitude.' GT

'Gilly has, for me, a magic combination of skills in leading Council circles.  She is at one and the same time, enormously profound in her self-giving and in the gentle challenging questions she invites us to consider, whilst also being incredibly clear and strong in the method and means of holding the circle.  This means that as a member of her Council I felt safe from the start about sharing from my deep place with people I did not previously know.  Gilly has a quiet loving wisdom that obviously emerges from her practice of silence which opens her heart and enables us to do the same.' TW

'I couldn’t have asked for more from this course. It’s difficult to put into words the freedom I feel from opening all my senses to what Nature has to give. Thank you, Gilly, for offering this wonderful path.'  SD

'The Medicine of Council has created a much needed haven for learning to listen more fully to others, to nature and to myself. All learning to date has been over zoom and thanks to the expert facilitation and planning, I have easily connected with the course content and other course participants. During a year of isolation and challenge, this course has been a gift of connection, exploration, creativity and love.'  LF

'Having completed the Introduction to Council course I decided to train as a facilitator through the Medicine of Council. This course has been everything and more than I could have wished for. It has deepened my practice of heart-centred listening and speaking which has opened pathways for significant personal development. The gentle, supportive, honest approach offered for developing my skills as a facilitator have been invaluable. Every session has challenged my thinking. I feel completely open to hearing others without the need to judge either them or myself. The creative aspects of the course have been wonderful, allowing every part of who I am to come more fully into being. These insights have, for me, increasingly built a solid foundation of trust in my own intuition. I would highly recommend this course to anyone who is motivated by a fulfilling life which can touch others and make for a better world. Thank you Gilly, Simone and Nikki for sharing your love and wisdom. What you offer has enhanced my life.'  SD