A new music promoter has taken over running the Banbury Blues, Roots, and Acoustic Music Festival on Saturday, March 3, at The Mill Arts Centre, Banbury.

Colin ‘Crazy Cactus’ Wills has retired after 24 events, and Tim Porter, who runs music shows in Shipston-on-Stour and the Gloucester Rhythm & Blues Festival, has taken over.

A new feature for the 25th festival will be in The Long Room, which is dedicated to showcasing talented local musicians who are now working nationally.

Beth Porter, cellist with folk star Eliza Carthy’s band, will be fronting her own band, Beth Porter and The Availables. Oliver Darling, who did a stint in keyboard player Mike Sanchez’s band, Laurence Jones, and the Barney Porter Trio, will also be performing.

The festival has an eclectic mix of blues-influenced musicians including headliner the Larry Miller Band, harmonica player Will Wilde, who was on the Paul Jones Rhythm and Blues BBC Radio 2 show in January, The Big Blues Tribe, Eddie and Frank Thomas (USA), The Reverend Robert (USA), and Babajack.

There will be afternoon and evening performances.

Mr Porter said: “I’m looking forward to running my first festival at The Mill, especially as it will be the 25th Blues Festival, and I’m delighted to have the support of so many brilliant musicians.”

For full details call Mr Porter on 01608 685332.