AN EAST Lancashire songwriter is hoping to build on her success in a national competition.

Major record producers who work with artists such as Sting, Elton John and Paul McCartney, voted three of Church woman Mavis Kelly’s pieces through to a prestigious semi-final.

Six of her entries were also highly commended by judges and she missed out on the final by a single point in the recent UK Songwriting Contest.

The contest, which attracts worldwide attention, saw lyricist Mavis triumph in spite of over six thousand international entries.

Though 70-year-old Mavis has in the past gained music publishing contracts and co-written with composers from across the UK, she considers the result to be the pinnacle of her career.

The former Woodnook Secondary pupil is hoping to build on this recent success through her MySpace page and is already planning to battle for a place in the final next year.The mum-of-two said she and her songwriting partner, composer Simon Riding from Clitheroe, were delighted with the result.

She said: “It was really exciting and though it was disappointing not to reach the final, the fact we got so close was amazing given the standard of the competition.

“To have such high level producers commend the songs was just fantastic too. To miss out on the final by just one point was quite encouraging and I am going to do my best to go all the way next year. I also have the best help in my partner Simon, he’s a very talented composer.”

The former British Northrop office worker has always been interested in music and ran a popular Beatles Fan Club when she worked for the Blackburn loommakers in the sixties.

Mavis, whose maiden name is Hartley, has always written short stories but she switched to penning catchy lyrics once she became a busy working mum.

Judges who commended the songs included Sting’s producer Kipper Eldridge and legendary producer Stuart Epps who has worked closely with Elton John, Robbie Williams and Oasis.

Also on the panel was producer Richard Niles a producer and composer who has worked with Paul McCartney, Kylie Minogue, Take That and Mariah Carey.

The semi-finalist songs Boulevard of Broken Dreams, I Bite the Bullet and Tell Me can be heard at