PRINCE Charles pays a return visit to Malmesbury Abbey next week for a concert by the London Chamber Orchestra.

The patron of Music in Country Churches, which is organising a weekend of fundraising performances in the abbey, made a similar visit from his Highgrove home a few miles away three years ago.

Vicar Rev Neill Archer said: “We’ve had a pretty special year or two at the abbey with concerts from The Sixteen, Sir James Galway and Julian Lloyd Webber coming next month.

“But this very special set of concerts is a real gift of the highest international calibre to music lovers in North Wiltshire. To be able to welcome the Prince of Wales to the Abbey for the evening is a great honour.”

The orchestra takes the stage at 7.30pm on May 4 under the baton of Sir Neville Marriner, to play a programme of music by Mozart, Wieniawski, Saint-Saens and Beethoven.

Money raised will go towards the renovation of the east end ruins of the abbey.

The weekend starts with the Nash Ensemble at 7.30pm on May 3. Fortepiano player Caroline Cerasi plays for families at 11am on May 4, when tickets cost £8 and children will be admitted for the price of a programme.

Music in Country Churches brings classical music to rural churches of exceptional beauty and significance, at the same time raising money for their repair and maintenance.

Tickets ranging from £7 to £70 are available from the box office on 01603 628319.