Mary ‘Queen of Shops’ Portas is flexing her creative craft as she takes on the role of judge for the annual Painswick Artburst open competition.

With over one hundred submissions in the bag, Mary will be presiding over who will take home the monetary prizes of up to £500.

This year’s competition criteria is along the theme of ‘Character of the Cotswolds’.

All entries will be displayed in the St Mary’s Church rooms throughout the festival, with Mary to announce the winners on the opening day of the 10-day art festival on Saturday, August 17.

The annual art festival is a glorious celebration of the collective works of Gloucestershire residents with much of the village given over to host the various open studios, talks and workshops throughout the event.

For the first time, a series of masterclasses will take place throughout festival.

Greg Thatcher who travels to the village from his native US each summer to study the beguiling yew trees of St Mary’s churchyard will be hosting a drawing class.

Josie Brown will be sharing her expertise in gilding on August 25, while Danny Rolph will be exploring abstract art on August 17.

Also imparting her skills will be Beth Jenkins who will be holding a lino cut workshop on August 18 (pictured).

A spokesperson for the festival said, “We are expecting over 2500 visitors to the village during the festival which we hope will bring many new customers to our artists and the village. Do support us if you can.”

Artburst Painswick comprising art exhibitions, workshops and classic car display, takes place from Saturday, August 17 to Monday 26

For more info and the Artburst trail walking route, visit: