THE search is once again on to find Worcestershire's most impressive female business well as other worthy women

Three special county females are being sought to take the coveted title: Worcestershire Women of the Year 2005.

The competition, now in its 15th year, is run by the county charity, St Richard's Hospice.

Women nominees must live or work in the county and have excelled in one of the following categories:

n Business award - A woman who has set up her own successful business or is able to demonstrate a major contribution to the company she works for. She must have outstanding entrepreneurial skills, and a high regard for training and development within the organisation.

n Achievement award - A woman who is a high achiever in her chosen filed and whose contribution has made a significant impact on the local community. For example, education, the professions, the arts, healthcare, or sport etc.

n Voluntary award - A woman who has made a significant voluntary contribution to the life of the local community by giving her time and effort freely.

"Since the first Worcestershire Women of the Year in 1996, the event has raised more than £210,000 for the work of St Richard's Hospice," said the charity's fundraising manager, Tricia Cavell.

"The aim of the 2005 event is to honour women who excel in their chosen sphere and to raise £45,000 to provide a fully-equipped room in our new hospice."

St Richard's Hospice was formed in 1984 caring for just a handful of patients with cancer. Last year alone, St Richard's cared for more than 1,400 patients and families.

A new state-of-the-art £5.25m hospice will be provide all the current services together with 15 specialist palliative care beds.

For more information call 01905 748108.