STARS of poetry, film and the natural world have contributed to an environmental festival which is making its return this month.

The countdown to the return of Wye Valley River Festival is nearly over, with the launch event taking place on Friday, May 27, at Tintern Abbey.

The Wye Valley River Festival is an arts organisation, led by artists and communities creating work with the environment at its heart. 

The abbey will host sound installations featuring interactive sound-making experiences, including an immersive soundscape designed by Sir David Attenborough’s sound recordist Chris Watson, along with recordings by actors including Dame Emma Thompson and bilingual poetry by Rhys Trimble.

In addition to the soundscapes, the festival's very own 'pedalling purveyors of merriment', the Bikesplorers - a cycling theatre troupe - will set off through the valley.

The first Wye Valley River Festival was created and developed in partnership by the Wye Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB), Desperate Men, and Phillippa Haynes.

The biennial festival grew from strength to strength, delivering live programmes in 2014, 2016 and 2018, and a digital programme in 2020.

Organisers said: "Alongside the biennial festival, the WVRF now supports co-created cultural activity year-round.

"These exciting new initiatives are led by ‘Creative Community Champions’ in partnership with local people and organisations.

"We bring local people, environmentalists, and talented artists together in an internationally important landscape, for a creative exploration of what is possible."

This year's festival takes place from May 27 until June 5, and more information is available at