AN event celebrating the wealth of creative and enterprising talent in Malvern is making a much-anticipated return.

The second annual Malvern Festival of Innovation will be taking place at Malvern Theatres and Malvern College between Thursday and Saturday, November 7-9.

Organised by Key IQ, the local firm behind the Wyche Innovation Centre in Walwyn Road, this year’s festival has been expanded to three days after hundreds of people flocked to last year’s inaugural two-day event.

The festival aims to help cutting- edge companies showcase their products and services and offer a platform for firms that champion innovation.

Several high-profile keynote speakers will be appearing, including Graeme Hackland of the Lotus Formula One team, and there will be discussions of topical subjects including cyber security, sustainability, engineering and manufacturing and technology for tourism.

Workshop-based sessions will be on offer to help individuals and small companies take their products to market and their will also be a Dragons’ Den-style opportunity for entrepreneurs to pitch their ideas to a panel of business and finance experts.

Other new additions for this year’s festival include a schools fringe event and a dedicated family show featuring TV presenters Prof Mark Miodownik and Dr Jonathan Hare.

A competition is also being run for animators and video producers to design an opening sequence for the festival to accompany a new signature tune penned by Malvern composer composer Paul Farrer – the man behind a host of well-known TV themes including The Weakest LInk.

While already a big event on the local calendar, founder Adrian Burden is delighted to see the festival now winning recognition on a wider scale.

He is particularly pleased that train operator First Great Western has agreed to name its early morning train service out of London Paddington The Innovation Express throughout the duration of the festival.

“This is great news as it helps to extend our reach into London and brings some national recognition for the festival,” he said.

For more information about the Malvern Festival of Innovation visit festivalinnovation.