It may be known for its agricultural college, its archaeological discoveries and its sleepy ways, but in 1977 it attracted attention for very different reasons – nudity, dancing and “group celebrations”.

40 years ago, residents of Sparsholt were reportedly “disgusted” with the activities of members of The Yogi Boogie Society, an obscure sect who rocked the peaceful Hampshire village in July 1977.

Approximately a dozen members of the group danced, meditated and played together outside for three days – much to the anger of the residents.

The majority of the activities were staged behind closed doors in the hall, which the sect had hired it for the weekend, With the shutters closed, some danced naked, some semi-naked to conga drums for “meditation” purposes.

David Stockwell, secretary of Sparsholt Community Council, which runs the village hall told the Echo: “We did not know the purpose for which it was let.”

Many of the villagers weren’t happy with the brief hippie invasion – one telling the Echo: “I was disgusted when I heard what was going on.

After the event, the group’s leader, psychotherapist Michael Lee Green told the Daily Echo: “We are getting people together so they can express their inner self through group celebrations. There are no drugs here. We just turn ourselves on.

“We have a good time getting to know ourselves. At the end we shall be much more aware of our bodies.

“It gets really hot at these events so that is why we meditate with no clothes on – and we have our eyes closed anyway.”

Followers of the society paid £29, around £165 in today’s money, for the Yogi Boogie weekend, which included accommodation, food and according to Mr Green –“a lot of fun”.

The society was originally formed in California, and it’s members said their aim was “the dissemination of life-giving karma through groups, love, work, play, yoga, music, food and sun.”

“I have been in the village for 40 years and nothing like this has happened before.”

One resident said a complaint was lodged to the police because the group were making so much noise.