He once visited the islands on holiday - leading to speculation he was looking to buy a home.

Now legendary Led Zeppelin lead singer and lyricist Robert Plant is to be one of the headliners for the 25th anniversary of an Outer Hebrides' music festival.

Saving Grace, featuring Plant and fellow vocalist Suzi Dian, will take to the stage on July 16, the Thursday of the Hebridean Celtic Festival.

The acoustic collaboration, which also includes Oli Jefferson (percussion), Tony Kelsey (mandolin, baritone and acoustic guitars) and Matt Worley (banjo, acoustic and baritone guitars, and cuatro), played their first gig just over a year ago.

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Their sound has been described as bluesy and folk-inspired, which packs a punch ranging "from a whisper to a scream".

Plant said of performing at HebCelt: "I have a deep and charged connection with those faraway islands and look forward to returning to the beautiful machair and to bring a different slant to my longstanding game."

In 2015 Plant was spotted on the Isle of Harris carrying property brochures leading to speculation amongst locals that he wall on the lookout for a house there.

The rocker chatted at a cafe on Harris, with punk icon and Buzzcocks drummer John Maher, who at the time had lived there for 13 years.

Plant, 71, is regarded as one of the greatest singers in the history of rock and roll during which time he has influenced musicians such as Freddie Mercury, Axl Rose, and Chris Cornell.

Led Zeppelin were hailed by fans as the greatest rock band in the world producing eight studio albums including from their debut self-titled debut in 1969 through to Physical Graffiti in 1975 and In Through The Out Door in 1979.

Only their first album, failed to top the albums charts.

In 1980 the band disbanded following the death of drummer John Bonham at the age of 32.

In 2006, Heavy Metal magazine Hit Parader named Plant the Greatest Metal Vocalist of All Time and in 2009, Plant was voted "the greatest voice in rock" in a poll conducted by Planet Rock and in 2011.

In Rolling Stone, which described the band as "the heaviest band of all time" readers ranked Plant the greatest of all lead singers.

When they were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1995, it was said that they were as influential during the 1970s as The Beatles had been during the 1960s.

Before Led Zeppelin hit the public consciousness, Robert Plant’s Band of Joy played the Top Storey Club in Edinburgh, on the site of what became the St James Centre. The show marked the closure of Radio Scotland pirate station.

Led Zeppelin’s first gig north of the border was to have been at the Edinburgh Usher Hall on February 7, 1970 but was cancelled after Robert Plant suffered facial injuries when his Jaguar car spun off the road after a concert in Birmingham by the American band Spirit.

It was rescheduled ten days later with English prog-rockers Barclay James Harvest supporting.

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Among the influences cited by Plant were Scots folk psychedelics The Incredible String Band. Plant said: “Some of the best times I’ve ever had was at a String Band show just being carried away by the whole experience.”

The rocker has always held Scots guitarist Bert Jansch in high regard. He said: “Probably my greatest influence on acoustic guitar is Bert Jansch, who was a real dream-weaver. He was incredibly original…his first album had a great effect on me.”

According to one rich list, Plant was worth £105 million in 2018.

Saving Grace will join Texas, Seasick Steve, Tide Lines and Julie Fowlis as some of the star names on the bill.

Lewis farmer Colin Macleod, who shares the same international booking agent with Robert Plant, has also been signed up for the festival after getting international recognition for his debut album Bloodlines.

HebCelt director Caroline Maclennan said: "Robert Plant is a legendary name in the music scene and it is so exciting that he and the other highly accomplished musicians in Saving Grace will be joining us for such a significant event.

“Our 25th anniversary festival is a very special occasion and the programme reflects that."

 HebCelt will be held from 15-18 July in Lewis and Harris.

Headliners during its quarter of a century have included Runrig, Van Morrison, Deacon Blue, The Fratellis, The Levellers and KT Tunstall.

It has grown from a small event attracting less than 1,000 fans to regularly attracting16,000 while providing significant economic and cultural benefits for its host area.

The festival, a not-for-profit charitable event firmly rooted within its community and managed and produced by volunteers, is thought to have generated more than £30 million for the local economy.