NEW ideas and new technologies will be the keynote in the first Malvern Festival of Innovation, which takes place next month.

The festival is the work of Key IQ, a local firm which recently created the Wyche Innovation Centre in Walwyn Road, Upper Colwall.

The festival, organised in association with Malvern Hills District Council and supported by numerous sponsors, including QinetiQ, is to promote innovation in technology and business.

It aims to help cuttingedge companies showcase their products and services and offer a platform for companies that assist innovation to explain their initiative.

High-profile speakers include Luke Johnson, chairman of Risk Capital Ventures and StartUp Britain and former chairman of Channel Four; Andrew Humphries, of the Global Entrepreneur Programme at UK Trade and Investment and London’s Tech City; Paul Farrer, an accomplished television and film music composer who lives in West Malvern; and Professor Peter Dobson, of the Begbroke Science Park at Oxford University.

The festival, at Malvern Theatres on Thursday and Friday, November 8-9, will include meetings about cyber security, digital media, sustainability and the environment, among other topics.

There will also be an exhibition, to which more than 40 organisations have signed up, with more in the pipeline.

Festival founder Dr Adrian Burden said: “The festival will be a platform to learn about some of the latest ideas in areas where rapid innovation is happening.

“Innovation is a deliberately broad theme which spans all technical disciplines and social-economic themes.

“The event will be a melting pot where insight and perspective from one area can spark an idea in someone involved in a totally different activity.”

Among local businesses taking part are Malvern Instruments, Morgan, Rotaire Dryline and Rift Technology.

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