PREPARATIONS are well under way for this year's Mappfest music festival at Malvern Link common.

The festival, to be held over two days in June, has a new chairman, Julie-Anne Goode, taking over from festival founder Andy Mapp, who has retired from the post for health reasons.

She said: "We aim to put on a wonderful weekend of entertainment for the whole family and raise funds. We have had a phenomenal number of bands and musicians apply to play, 756 in fact. We are working hard to go through every application and believe me there is some incredible talent. We are so grateful for every application, we have had musicians and bands apply from as far as Australia and Turkey. It is fantastic.

"This year we are raising money for the festival by doing a sponsored walk in fancy dress on Saturday, February 24, around Great Malvern, and the following week one of our committee members, Jonathan Smith, has been sponsored to walk miles across the Malvern Hills. We have plans for a barn dance and quiz night and some evening entertainment fundraising events.

"One of the more exciting things that we have done is the committee and 20 other musicians went into a studio and created a CD that will be released with a video in the next three weeks. It was a wonderful turn out of people that gave up their time and used their talents to help us create something special. That day was a wonderful day and just showed how much efforts people put into Mappfest.

"In 2017 we raised an amazing £5,600 for our three worthy causes: Acorn’s Children’s Hospice, St Richard’s Hospice and Malvern Community Action.

"The charities we are supporting this year are Headway, and St. Richard’s Hospice, Malvern Community Action and Charlotte and Craig’s Saving Hearts Foundation. Each one of these causes are so very important and we want to be able to raise as much as we can to help with each."

This year’s festival will be on Saturday and Sunday, June 16 and 17. There are still spaces for stalls, and anyone interested can find out more at