UNIVERSITY students are putting the final preparations in place for a new music festival to be held in the Ribble Valley next month.

Sharon Counsell, 31, from Clitheroe, and her friend Hope Barnes, 23, from Blackburn, have put together the two-day event which will be staged at the Three Rivers Country Park in West Bradford.

The second year hospitality and events students at Blackburn College will hold the ‘World Explosion Festival’ on May 3 and 4 in aid of the East Lancashire Hospice.

Among the acts already confirmed are Chatburn-based musician Andy Oliver, Burnley’s Panjenix and East Lancashire band Blowjangles. Oldham classic rock band Blackstar and Canadian April Moon have also been confirmed.

Mother-of-two Sharon said: “We are both really looking forward to it and we are more excited than nervous.

“The facilities at the park are great and it will be a great venue.

“We chose the East Lancashire Hospice because we have both had personal experiences with them and they do some fantastic work in the area.”

Hope added: “I hope that it’s going to be a great success.

“If everything goes well then we will definitely think about making it an annual event.

“The East Lancashire Hospice means a lot to us and it’s great to be supporting them.”

Alongside the musical offerings, the festival will also have many other events.

These include a hotdog eating competition, children’s colouring challenges and food stalls.

Tickets for the event cost £17 for adults and £40 for a family weekend pass.

The pair have also challenged themselves to a 100-mile bike ride on a stationary bike at DW Sports in Audley on April 30 to raise money for the hospice.

For more information, call Sharon on 07851 264271 or Hope on 07984 609573 or you can e-mail