When Welsh mezzo soprano Katherine Jenkins took on the role of presenter for Songs of Praise she found herself becoming pen pals with a monk, joining in a spiritual hike and performing in front of the Queen.

This summer, she is coming to Bowood House for the Boundless Summer Proms.

After 15 years appearing as guest singer on the famous television series she joined the team on BBC's Songs of Praise and says it is a lovely addition to her singing.

Katherine said: "The series tries to incorporate the whole of the UK, so in one episode I was feeling at one with nature and communing with God on a spiritual hike, on another I spent a day with a monk, who did become my pen pal, and we had the Queen on one programme. I always feel honoured when I am asked to perform for her, I sang at her 90th birthday at Windsor Castle. I am a royalist, my Nana was a big fan.''

The singer moves effortlessly from classical to pop, breaking down elitist barriers and enticing fans from both sides of the musical fence. Six out of seven of her studio albums have reached number one in the UK classical charts and her album Second Nature reached number 16 in the UK Album Charts and won Album of the Year in the 2005 BRIT awards. Her album Rejoice had songs written for her by Take That's Gary Barlow and it shot into the pop album chart at number three, beating the Spice Girls.

Katherine will be performing at the Boundless Summer Proms on Sunday July 22 at Bowood House in Calne and she says that these open air concerts are her favourite.

She said: "It is a privilege to perform in that kind of setting. It is lovely to see people relaxed, enjoying a picnic, sipping wine and listening to a live orchestra. In a concert hall some people feel they should dress a certain way whereas at outdoor concerts anything goes.''

She says that the Proms in the Park-style concert at Bowood will reflect that more casual style, with something for everyone in the programme, including arias, songs from the shows, and the flag waving Land of Hope and Glory and Jerusalem, along with her hit Time To Say Goodbye, and You'll Never Walk Alone from the musical Carousel. She will be accompanied by the The National Symphony Orchestra with special guest John Owen-Jones and conductor Andrew Inglis.

Last year the singer swapped her concert halls for the West End stage starring alongside Alfie Boe in the latest production of Rodgers and Hammerstein's Carousel at the English National Opera in the role of Julie Jordan.

"There were so many firsts for me doing that, it was such a different discipline and I had to have coaching in acting, dancing and I had to learn the American accent,'' said Katherine. "You have to choose the right show because it is eight shows a week but I really enjoyed it and would do it again.''

She has made numerous trips to Iraq, Afghanistan, Kosovo, Cyprus and Northern Ireland to entertain the troops and feels strongly that despite the danger it is important to bring a little bit of home to them.

"We are out there only for a few days, I meet people who are out there for nine months at a time so I think it is the least I can do. It gives them that break in routine, they can talk to their families about it.''

Katherine is married to film maker Andrew Levitas and in 2015 they had their first baby Aaliyah and she is now expecting a little boy.

"It's great having a baby. When I had Aaliyah I would take her to the studio. She is my inspiration. I always thought that when I had children I would take time off but having a girl made me want to be a role model and show her working mums can do it. Although sometimes it's exhausting travelling home late at night to be in time to give her breakfast, but I just want to spend time with her. We should be able to follow our passions and have children.'' For more details and to buy tickets starting at £30 visit www.boundlesssummer.co.uk - Flicky Harrison

A Boundless Summer

  • Jools Holland & his Rhythm and Blues Orchestra featuring Gilson Lavis, with special guest Chris Difford and guest vocalists Ruby Turner, Louise Marshall & Rosie Mae, will be performing at Bowood House on Saturday 21st July, and on Sunday 22nd July, guests will be treated to Boundless Summer Proms with Katherine Jenkins with The National Symphony Orchestra.
  • Bowood House is set in 2,000 acres of Capability Brown, Grade I listed parkland. It has been home to the Lansdowne family since 1754. Guests are allowed to bring their own picnics and alcohol to the concerts, and there will also be refreshments on-site, including pre-orderable picnic hampers.
  • Boundless is a club dedicated to civil-service and public-sector workers - active and retired - looking to get more out of life for less. Members pay a small fee per year, and are given access to exclusive days out, holidays, ideas and offers. www.boundlesssummer.co.uk