CELLIST Julian Lloyd Webber's concert at Malvern Theatres on Friday will be his last.

The musician today made the shock announcement that he has been forced to stop playing for medical reasons.

Lloyd Webber revealed that a herniated disc in his neck has reduced the power in his right arm, ending his musical career.

He said: “I am devastated. There were so many exciting plans that cannot now come to fruition. I have had an immensely fulfilling career and feel privileged to have worked with so many great musicians and orchestras but now I have to move on.

"I have no intention of enduring a forced retirement though. I would like to use the knowledge I have gained through my life as a musician and an educator to give back as much as I can to the music profession which has given me so much over the years.

"I have just completed two new recordings which will be released later this year but after May 2, my cello will fall silent. I now need time to reflect and to consider this sudden and distressing life-changing situation and there will be no further comment at this time."

Malvern Theatres still has some tickets left for Friday's concert, when Lloyd Webber will play with the English Chamber Orchestra.