ICONIC singer-songwriter Van Morrison and electropop artist Dido are to share top-billing on the opening night of this summer’s Cornbury Festival.

The names are the first to be released for the three-day event which takes place at Great Tew park, near Chipping Norton, from July 10-12. The stars will play the festival’s Friday night.

The Northern Irish troubador – nicknamed Van the Man – is no stranger to west Oxfordshire, having played Cornbury in 2013 and Blenheim Palace in 2004 and 2015.

He is expected to perform a set of his hits, which could include crowd-pleasers Brown Eyed Girl, Have I Told You Lately and Moondance.

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Ivor Novello Award-winning singer Dido – real name Dido Florian Cloud de Bounevialle O’Malley Armstrong – became a star with the release of her 1999 debut album No Angel, which included the songs Here with Me and Thank You, which was sampled by the rapper Eminem in his hit single Stan.

Banbury Cake:

In a break with tradition, festival organisers are releasing the names of headline acts one day at a time.

Promoter Hugh Phillimore said: “We’re very excited to be announcing two huge stars from the beginning. Van’s my Desert Island artist and it’s a huge privilege for Cornbury to be one of Dido’s few summer appearances.

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“This year we’re doing things a bit differently keeping a few surprises up our sleeve by announcing our other artists one day at a time over the next few months.”

Cornbury has played host to some legendary artists since its first edition in 2004, with Paul Simon, Robert Plant, Amy Winehouse, Bryan Adams, Blondie, The Beach Boys and Bryan Ferry all gracing its stages.

Friday day tickets and weekend tickets are on sale from 9am today from cornburyfestival.com