KITE flyers from around the world will be taking part in this year's international kite festival in Wirral - the biggest international event of its kind in the UK this year.

The festival, which takes place on Saturday, June 30 and Sunday July 1, will feature flyers from as far away as Japan, China, Bali, New Zealand, Australia and the United States.

Flyers from closer to home will also be taking part in the Kites over the Mersey Festival.

Carl and James Robertshaw - world champion stunt flyers from Cheshire, Graham Lockwood, known for flying three kites simultaneously and the Wigsley Wings Display Team will all be entertaining the visitors.

Andrew Beattie, already well known for his large show kites, will become even more famous when he ties the knot during the festival with fellow flyer Kathleen.

Malcolm Goodman, the kite enthusiast who has arranged for the international flyers to attend the festival, said: "The Dips at New Brighton provide a marvellous setting for the kite festival as it has excellent windy conditions and is a natural arena for a large event of this nature.

"Visitors will get the chance to see a huge variety of kites including a centipede, William Tell with a train of apples, Viking ship and many hand-crafted art kites of all shapes and sizes.

"The Wirral kite festival has grown enormously over the past few years and we're all looking forward to returning this June."

As well as kite flying, there will be kite workshops for children and, if they bring their teddy bear along, they can enter him into the teddy drop when he will be parachuted into the main arena from a static kite.

It is expected that over 20,000 people will visit the festival over the weekend. Admission and parking are free.

For more information on the kite festival, please phone Chris Higgins from Wirral Council's Tourism Team on 0151 691 8269.