* IT HAS always had a reputation for style, but this year’s Henley Festival can now be expected to be Absolutely Fabulous.

The highlight of the Thames-side event will be a gala Saturday night James Bond-themed evening featuring the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. And hosting the extravaganza is the ever-stylish Joanna Lumley.

While she made her name as good time girl Patsy in Ab Fab, Johanna is the perfect hostess for a night dedicated to 007, having starred in the sixth instalment of the Bond franchise, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, alongside George Lazenby.

The Shaken & Stirred concert, on July 13, will include music from such classics as Diamonds Are Forever, Goldfinger, Live and Let Die and Skyfall, and performances from Kristina Rihanoff and Robin Windsor of BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing and a clutch of stars from hit West End musicals, all helping to celebrate the 50th anniversary of our favourite spy.

“The very words ‘James Bond’ bring a rush of excitement to my heart,” says Joanna. “Even though it was 45 years ago, and even though I really only had two lines in the film, I am as proud of being a Bond Girl as of anything else in my career. I can’t wait for this spectacular Bond Night on the river.”

The Henley festival runs from July 10-14. Other headline acts include The Beach Boys, Jamie Cullum, Madness and Paloma Faith. Tickets are at henley-festival.co.uk

* KNOW any good songs about the Vale of White Horse? If so folk duo Spiers and Boden are keen to hear from you.

For their current Backyard Songs tour the founders of Bellowhead are playing 30 small gigs in intimate venues – and they want local people to provide them with local songs for their sets.

On April 16, the pair play a show at the Thomas Hughes Memorial Hall in Uffington, and have appealed to villagers with knowledge of folk songs from the surrounding area to offer suggestions for a bit of local colour.

Song ideas can be contributed via their website backyardsongs.com “You can add your comments and suggestions of what local material you’d like to see us play at the gig,” says John Spiers, who, lives in Wootton, near Abingdon.

“If you’ve got a link to an audio or video clip then that would also be fantastic. It could be a song from the village or surrounding area, or one that mentions the village. “It could be a dance tune from nearby or even a story or play from the area. The more the merrier!”