FATBOY Slim has given a musical masterclass to people with severe mental health conditions to learn the art of being a DJ.

Norman Cook was the special guest at a workshop which saw six people come together to learn music skills.

The group shared the joy of music in the beautiful surroundings of Rockwater on Hove seafront.

Brighton-based DJ Audio Anonymous/Atomic Drop also took part in the event, organised as part of Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust’s arts and health programme Make Your Mark.

Natalie Rowlands, senior occupational therapist at the trust and lead organiser for the event, said: “We are absolutely delighted to be working with Fatboy Slim and Audio Anonymous/Atomic Drop to challenge some of this stigma and bring the sheer joy of music to people.

"It was truly amazing to see the joy on participants' faces during this workshop.

"One individual told me that it had been a pivotal moment in her life, it was the beginning of a new chapter for her and something she will never forget."

“While there is growing understanding about the role the arts and creativity can play in recovery for people with common mental health problems, much less is known about this for people with severe mental illness, who can often face the greatest stigma around their illness and as a result far fewer opportunities to be creative.”

The event aimed to bring people together through music, giving people a unique opportunity that they would not normally have access to, and providing them with inspiration and a creative outlet.

The DJ music workshop is the first in a series of four workshops, funded by NHS charity Heads On and delivered in partnership by the charity and Sussex Partnership.

Rachael Duke, head of charity at Heads On, said: "We're delighted to be supporting the music workshops, opening up greater access and putting people with severe mental illness at the forefront of creativity; celebrating the extraordinary contribution that participation in the arts can make to recovery. 

“For far too long people with severe mental illness have faced stigma and exclusion in all aspects of life and we are thrilled that Fatboy Slim and Audio Anonymous/Atomic Drop have joined us in challenging this."