FROM evergreen hip hop heroes to a group hailed as Britain’s best live band with the exception of The Who, the first raft of acts for Wiltshire’s largest music festival have been revealed.

An estimated 30,000 world music aficionados will converge on the Earl of Suffolk’s ancestral home, at Charlton Park near Malmesbury, for four days this summer, to hear sounds from around the globe as WOMAD (the World of Music Arts and Dance) celebrates its 33rd year.

Festival spoksman Giles Cooper said: “Last year’s sell-out gathering was a tougher-than-tough act to follow.

“But we’re delighted to reveal some of the serious big-hitting artists who will be setting their sat-navs for Wiltshire come late July.”

Hip-hoppers De La Soul, whose ground-breaking debut album 3 Feet High And Rising has become a classic of the genre, will make their first appearance at the festival, which runs from Thursday, July 23, to Sunday, July 26.

Grammy winning Tinariwen, who hail from the dusty deserts of northern Mali and performed at the opening ceremony of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, will be returning to WOMAD where they are huge favourites.

Lauded by the Independent as “with the exception of The Who, surely the best live act in the country”, Bellowhead will be bringing their extraordinary theatrics to the Wiltshire countryside.

Nearly 20 other acts – from Uganda to Honduras, New York to Brazil, Canberra to Tel Aviv and Osaka to Montreal – are among the first acts confirmed for WOMAD 2015.

The first WOMAD Festival took place at the Royal Bath and West Showground in Somerset following the seed of an idea from a posse of globally minded musos, headed by Peter Gabriel.

Since then it has evolved into a much loved annual soiree which encompasses art, culture, food, crafts and costume as well as music.

It has also resided at various festival sites around the UK before finding its “spiritual home” at Charlton Park.

Mr Cooper said: “Ever since the first gathering in 1982, WOMAD has been a byword for musical discovery, a place where a performance by a hitherto unknown artist may prove to be as enthralling as that by one of the headliners.

“This approach is upheld again this year, with your new favourite artist possibly among these Charlton Park performers.”